Ch. 9: Fairy Tail (Pt: 2)
Ysmir joined the wizard guild Fairy Tale with open arms. Stunned at first, due to their eccentric actions, he's begun to adjust and started talking to people again after several weeks of solitude. At the moment, the Dragonborn is learning about the guild's past and its inner workings from one of the guilds waitresses, Mirajane. Mira is almost finished telling Ysmir about the S-class wizards and the second floor.
"-And that is why only S-class Wizards can take those kinds of jobs and are the only ones allowed on the second floor," she said with a smile. "I hope you got all that, Ysmir."
Ysmir nodded. "No problem," he said. "Second floor off limits until I'm 'S-class'." He didn't like how only certain members of the guild could enter the second floor while he couldn't. Besides being barred from the second floor, Ysmir's interest peaked when Mirajane told him about the S-class job postings and thoughts started to form on how he could get one for himself. Ysmir's hands twitched at the thought of getting money and loot from an extremely difficult quest.
Mira's smile broadened. "You're an eager one, aren't you," she said cheerily. "Good! You'll fit right on in with the rest of the guild." She paused for a moment, as if thinking, and pointed a finger towards the ceiling. "I almost forgot!" she ducked under the bar and started rummaging around.
Ysmir was still daydreaming about what an S-class quest could be when Mira ducked behind the bar. Curious, he bent over the bar and tried to see what she was doing. Unfortunately, all he could see is her white head bobbing up and down as she searched. He heard glass clinking and wood scraping against wood.
"Found it!" shouted Mira as she stood back up. With a smile on her face, she set a large stamp or press on the counter between them. "So Ysmir," she said cheerily, "where would you like your guild mark?"
Ysmir looked down at the stamp with its simple construction of a block with a wooden handle. Probably has some type of magical properties to it. He looked back up to Mira.
"Is everyone required to have one?" he asked.
Mira smiled. "Yep! It's what all the guilds do to identify their members. Some even say they bring good luck!" Mira's smile faded and she looked at Ysmir with curious eyes. "Have you never been a part of a guild before?" she asked.
Ysmir thought for a moment. "Yeah, I've been in a few guilds back home," hopefully she won't ask what kind of guild. It would be awkward if she found out he was in a Thief's guild or a brotherhood of assassins. "It's just that none of them had symbols that they put on their members. It's kind of interesting, now that I think about it."
"Guess so," said Mira thoughtfully. "In any case, where'd you like yours?"
Ysmir thought for a moment and looked down at his hands. He started undoing his right-hand gauntlet. Once it was free of the armor, Ysmir placed his forearm on the countertop, palm facing the ceiling. "How about here?" he asked, pointing to his wrist. It's one of the few places where scars haven't marred his skin.
Mira nodded. "Yep, that'll do. Now, what color?"
"Okay." Mira took the stamp in her hands and fiddled with it. There was a tiny flash of light and she set the mark on Ysmir's wrist. There was a second flash of light and Ysmir felt a strange tingling sensation, almost like a horde of ants crawling over his arm. When Mira lifted the stamp away, a black Fairy Tail symbol is imprinted on his wrist, just below the heel of his hand.
Ysmir lifted his hand off the counter and rolled his wrist around in circles, smiling in amusement as the symbol warped and stretched. He brought his free hand over and poked the symbol with a finger. It is dry and felt just like normal, but the tingling sensation remained.
"Hmm," Ysmir flexed his hand once more before starting to put the gauntlet back in place. He looked back up to Mira. "What now?"
"Well, you're officially a part of the guild now, so if you don't have any more questions, I guess you could meet with the other guild members," she smiled. "I'm sure they'd like to meet you."
A low rumble emanates from Ysmir's midsection before he could reply. He brought an armored hand up to his belly and flashed Mira a quick smile. "I think I'll get something to eat first." Mirajane nodded and Ysmir reached into his pack at his side and withdrew a roll of paper strips that he took from the Bull's guild. "Is this the money this country uses?"
"Yeah, they're called Jewels," said Mirajane helpfully. She gave him a questioning look. "How long have you been in Fiore, Ysmir?"
"A little over a week before I met Erza yesterday. I was lost in the forest for most of that time, so I haven't had a chance to learn about the important things, like money." replied Ysmir, hoping she would believe him and not ask any more questions.
Mira smiled. "So Magnolia must be the first city you've seen since you came to Fiore." Ysmir nodded reluctantly. "How does it compare to the cities back home?"
"It's… bigger." he answered. Too many questions, thought Ysmir, Time to change the subject. "So about that meal…"
"Oh right!" Mirajane took a pad of paper and a pen out of a pocket. "What can I get you?"
Mira nodded and wrote something down. "I'll be right back!" She walked down the bar. Ysmir watched her back for a moment.
"Nice girl," he said to himself, "might need to keep my distance if she keeps asking questions though." Maybe telling them the truth would work out, but then again, it might not. Through all of Ysmir's experiences, more often than not, things tend to go bad at the worst possible times.
He turned in his seat and looked around the room to observe those groups still milling about. Some are talking, and others are eating or drinking. Might be a good idea to go meet a few of them, but for now he needs to get something to eat, and maybe some time to think.
As he looked out over the crowd Ysmir noticed that a few members were looking at him. A few averted their eyes as soon as they noticed him looking back. One was a young woman with long brown hair and a deck of colorful cards lying on the table in front of her. She looked down at her cards when Ysmir turned in her direction. Another was the large man with a scar on his face; he seemed to be sizing Ysmir up. When Ysmir's piercing gaze lined up with his, the large man blinked and looked away. Ysmir smirked. Over the last few years of adventuring, he has been perfecting his stare so he can make even the sturdiest of warriors avert their gaze. And it probably helped that his eyes share similarities with the dragons.
Ysmir's lips formed a thin line. No, he thought grimly, no one needs to know.
He looked out over the 'Hall again. Glances and looks were common, even back in Skyrim before he defeated the Vampires, Miraak, and Alduin. Those looks were usually hostile, fearful, judging, or indifferent, emotions that the people of Skyrim seemed to favor above all others. The looks the guild members were giving him now seemed to be curious ones, well, except the scarred man. Hopefully he won't be a problem.
Light footsteps behind him interrupted Ysmir's thoughts. He turned around to see Mirajane returning with a tray filled with a plate of food and a large wooden cup. She set the tray down on the bar and flashed Ysmir a bright grin. Ysmir looked at the plate and smirked, he didn't know what he expected, but some things seem to be universal.
"Here you go, Ysmir! Today's special; beef stew and a side of baked potatoes." Along with the stew and potatoes, there is also a half a loaf of bread and a bright red apple sitting on the side of the tray.
Ysmir wet his lips and smiled. "Thank you, Mirajane."
After handing Mirajane a few slips of paper that she called Jewels, Ysmir grabbed the tray and turned to find a place to sit at one of the tables where he could eat in peace. Most of the tables were full, or had too many people around. But luckily for him there's a table in the far corner of the room that nobody has claimed.
That'll do, thought Ysmir. He took the tray and started walking across the room, taking the long way around, avoiding the tables filled with people. He could feel the other guild members watching him.
As the Dragonborn walked across the room, a shadow moved to follow him. Unseen by anyone, the shadow reached Ysmir's armored leg and started climbing up his robes. The small streak of darkness slid up Ysmir's back towards the back of his neck, once there, the shadow formed the shape of a slender, feminine hand.
The inky-black hand reached a finger out towards Ysmir's neck and traced a line, almost tenderly, down his spine. The shadowed finger kept going until it reached a leather cord, hanging at the back of Ysmir's neck. The shadow paused for a moment before it went to work undoing the knot holding the two ends together. In a flash, the shadow had the knot unraveled and waved in farewell before it faded from existence.
Unknown to Ysmir, his amulet of Talos fell from it's place on his chest to the ground. The white and gold amulet fell, but just before it hit the floorboards it was snatched out of the air by a second shadow in the shape of another thin hand. The shadowed hand slid its 'thumb' over the amulets surface, as it feeling the energy flowing from it.
The hand melted into the floorboards, amulet and all, and reappeared across opposite end of the room. The shadow hand set the amulet gently onto the floor and faded from sight.
The amulet sat there on the floor, waiting. Luckily for it, it didn't have to wait very long as a third shadow fell over it. This shadow had two pointed ears on top of its head and a long, thin tail swinging side to side. A small, blue paw reached out and picked up amulet of Talos.
Ysmir reached the table without incident. He paused for a moment to scratch the back of his neck. As he was setting his tray down onto the table, Ysmir felt something small crawl underneath his robes towards his neckline.
Shaking her head to free her pointy ears from the white and brown fabric, Khasi popped her head out from Ysmir's robes and looked around. "Ooh," she said as her eyes locked onto the food sitting on the table in front of her. Ysmir grunted and reached up. Pulling Khasi free of his robes by the back of her dress, he deposited her next to the tray. Ysmir pulled a dagger from his belt and quickly sliced the apple into thin slices.
After sliding the dagger back into its sheath Ysmir placed the apple slices and loaf of bread in front of Khasi. She quickly grabbed one slice and stuck it in her small mouth. Mouth stuffed with the apple, Khasi looked up to Ysmir and gave him a sticky but happy smile. Ysmir looked away grimly and grabbed the spoon from the tray and started eating himself.
While the stew was delicious, Ysmir didn't taste any of it. He slowly lifted the spoon from the bowl to his mouth and back again without any thought. His mind was too preoccupied with thoughts of Fairy Tail; its rules, and what it means for him to be a part of the guild. His mind also drifted from thoughts of the world in general. The magic's he's seen, the people he's met, and the things he has yet to do in this new world, as well as the looming threat of the Daedra finding a way into this world, Earthland.
Khasi was happily munching on the apple and bread Ysmir gave her.
In the last few weeks she discovered that she really likes apples, with their bright red and smooth skin and soft juicy insides. She looked up to see Ysmir slowly eat with a far-off look in his eyes. Khasi thought back to one of her early memories of when she found an apple tree in the forest and the first time Ysmir gave her first apple. The smile on her face broadened. She liked Ysmir too.
Khasi was finished off the last apple slice and noticed that Ysmir still had a lot of his own food left, even as his arm mechanically moved the spoon from the bowl to his mouth. She looked up at him again to see the far-off look still there. She silently waited for him to finish, but got bored quickly and decided to have a look around. She swung her legs around and looked at the rest of the big room.
She liked it here so far. It is a lot better than the last one Ysmir brought her to. The people are laughing and happy and not giving Ysmir angry looks like the last big room. She also thought Ysmir liked it here too. He talked with a person named Mirajane for a long time while she was hiding in Ysmir's warm robes.
While she was looking out over the big room, Khasi heard a voice that sounded familiar. Khasi saw that it belonged to a girl with a pretty dress and white hair. The name Mirajane silently formed on Khasi's lips as she watched the white haired waitress smile and talk to the other people around the room. Khasi thought she looked nice, especially when she smiled.
Khasi looked back to check on Ysmir. He hasn't moved and still had that look on his face. Khasi was getting bored of waiting, but she didn't want to leave Ysmir alone, he might get in trouble. Khasi looked back to the rest of the room. She saw people were giving her and Ysmir strange looks and started to get nervous. She scooted back and leaned against Ysmir's arm, his warmth on her back comforted her. She thought about climbing up to his shoulder, but dismissed the idea.
Khasi looked back over the room and saw something interesting flying through the air. It looked like her, but it was blue. It had pointed ears and a long tail like her and even had big white wings on its back. It didn't have a dress like the one Ysmir made for her, but he, she realized, did have a green bag on his shoulders. He flew through the air towards something on the far side of the room.
Khasi got to her feet and started nudging Ysmir's arm while still keeping her eyes on the blue cat. She was always excited to show Ysmir something new and someone that looks like her definitely counts as interesting. She couldn't move Ysmir's arm even with her full bodyweight so she moved to Ysmir's hand and started tugging on his large fingers to get his attention. When that didn't work, Khasi huffed out a breath with a frown and grabbed Ysmir's pinky finger and started tugging on it.
Ysmir's finger twitched, but that was the extent of his reaction. Khasi dropped his finger and placed her little paws on her hips with a frown, she still couldn't get his attention. Khasi turned to see the blue cat fly downwards on the other end of the room. With a sigh Khasi jumped up on top of Ysmir's hand, walked up his forearm and crawled up to his shoulder. She stood on his shoulder and started pulling on his ear, hoping that'll make him notice her.
Ysmir was deep in thought when he felt an insistent tugging on his ear. With an annoyed sigh he reached up and plucked Khasi from his shoulder by pinching the back of her dress between his thumb and index finger.
"What?" he grunted, holding her in the air in front of him. Khasi smiled broadly, her tail swinging back and forth happily, and pointed to something behind her. Ysmir followed her line of sight and sighed and set her on the table next to him. "Yep," he said tiredly. "There are a lot of people here, Khasi. I'm sure you'll get to meet all of them later."
Khasi placed her hands on her hips and rolled her eyes at him. She pointed at the other end of the guild hall. The look she gave him seemed to say "look again" and "let's go" at the same time.
Ysmir smirked and shook his head. "Just like Serana." he mumbled, amused. "Okay, fine," he said looking back to Khasi. "What do you want to show me?"
The smile reformed on her face and hopped into the air, wings forming in a flash of light on her back. Ysmir heard a few gasps of surprise from the other guild members as she flew in circles above him. Ysmir grunted as he got to his feet and stretched his legs. He looked up to see where Khasi has flown off to when he felt a light weight land on his head. He looked up to find Khasi impatiently pointing towards the other end of the room.
"Fine, fine," he said as he swung his legs over the bench and started walking around the room. He could feel the looks and stares from the members of the guild. There were also some 'aww's when they noticed Khasi riding on top off his head. Ysmir ignored them and kept walking, pausing only when a lanky man, wearing an extremely odd form-fitting outfit danced past them. Ysmir watched the odd man dance away with a questioning look before shaking his head and moving on.
"You know," he started, speaking more to himself than anyone else. "I was thinking about what Erza said the other day. She said there were still dragon slayers around, even though dragons in this world are gone. I wonder where they are." An almost indistinguishable glimmer of hope entered Ysmir's voice. "If I could find them, I wouldn't be The Last anymore." Ysmir kept walking, following Khasi's consistent pointing, until someone called out to him.
"Hey, new guy," shouted a deep voice. Ysmir turned his head to see the large, scarred man looking at him from one of the tables near the bar. The large man grunted as he got to his feet and took took a few steps towards Ysmir, to stand in front of him. Ysmir could hear the floorboards strain and creak under the man's weight. "What's your name, new guy?" he questioned in a deep, booming voice.
Ysmir looked the man up and down before answering. Being a Nord, He was used to being taller than most people, making them arch their necks to look him in the eyes, even fellow Nords were shorter than him and had to angle their gaze upwards. The scarred man standing in front of him was at least a hand and a half taller than him, something that Ysmir thought was funny. Besides being tall, the scarred man seemed to be quite muscular underneath his dark, thin, and odd-looking, high-collared jacket and pants.
Ysmir could feel Khasi grab a hold of his hair and her tail tickle his neck as he arched his neck to look the scarred man in the eyes. You remind me of someone… he thought, ignoring the scarred man's question.
The large man waited for an answer, but got nothing. "Whatever." the large man grunted and crossed his thick arms over his broad chest. "I saw you talking to my sister. You're not giving her any trouble, are you?" he questioned darkly.
Ysmir's eyes brightened and he snapped his fingers. "Ahh," he said triumphantly. "Mirajane. I guess the hair was a giveaway." he said gesturing to the man's white, spiky mane. Ysmir smirked at the larger man's confused expression.
The large man looked like he was about to speak when a second voice spoke up from behind.
"Are you trying to see how 'Manly' the new guy is, Elfman?" The voice was smooth, almost seductive. The large man, or Elf-man, who looks nothing like an elf, turned around to address the new speaker. Ysmir raised an eyebrow at the spectacle before him.
Walking up towards the two large men was the young man in the green coat from earlier. Ysmir remembered him from when Elf-man threw him onto a table when he first entered the guild hall. The young man had rust colored hair and was wearing stylish pants, a shirt underneath his green coat and an odd pair of colored glasses on his face. Ysmir also noticed the telltale shimmer of gold and silver on the man's fingers, which were hanging onto the shoulders of two, scantily clad girls.
Elfman grunted. "Just making sure he's not bothering Mira, Loke." he said
Loke had his eyes closed behind his eyewear as he, and the two girls, walked towards the two larger men. "I'm sure nobody would dare bother Mira, Elfman. Don't worry about it," he said smoothly. The two girls hanging off him giggled. "And I bet that Mira won't go for the new guy anyway."
Loke opened his eyes and looked towards Ysmir. Their eyes met for a fraction of a second before Loke jumped back with a panicked look in his eyes. Without any explanation or reason, he sprinted out of the building as quickly as he could, leaving behind a trail of dust and confused guild members in his wake. Ysmir stared at the large wooden doors as the swung shut on the trail of dust, wondering what in Oblivion just happened. The two girls ran after Loke, calling his name as they went.
Ysmir gave Elfman a confused look. "What was that about?" he asked. He could feel Khasi's head nod in agreement.
Elfman, who was also staring after Loke, shrugged his shoulders and looked back towards Ysmir. A broad smile formed on the man's face. "You scared him away just by looking at him!" Elfman's smile grew as he held out his hand towards Ysmir. "What did you say your name was?"
"Ysmir Dovahkiin," he said and grasp the large man's hand.
"Elfman Strauss." Ysmir gripped the man's large hand in an iron grip. "You're a real man, Ysmir," he said, emphasizing the 'real man' part with enthusiasm.
Ysmir nodded his head, but was slightly confused. Real man? Ysmir mentally shrugged. Whatever. "Same to you." Ysmir felt a light thumping on his head and looked up to see Khasi pointing towards the other end of the guild hall. Ysmir rolled his eyes and looked back to Elfman, he was giving Khasi an odd look. "Let's talk again sometime, Elf-man," said Ysmir, getting the large man's attention.
The large man glanced back to Ysmir and nodded distractedly. "Sure thing, Ysmir." he stepped to the side allowing Ysmir to pass.
Ysmir slid past Elfman and kept walking across the room. "Well that was weird," said Ysmir quietly, he could feel Khasi nod her head in agreement. Ysmir glanced back to see Elfman taking his seat at one of the tables. "At least he wasn't a problem," Ysmir directed his gaze towards the Guild Hall's entrance. "But the other guy, Loke, what was his deal?"
Could he have known? Thought Ysmir. A small frown formed on his face as he mentally made a note to avoid the smooth talking, womanizer, Loke, as much as possible.
Ysmir turned around in time to see the color pink before walking into someone. The two bounced away from eachother, causing Khasi to lose her grip on Ysmir's hair and slip into his robes hood with a quiet yelp of surprise. Ysmir threw out his arms to balance himself, and looked to see who he ran into.
Standing a few paces in front of him was the pink haired boy from earlier. Ysmir struggled to remember the boy's name, Not-sue or something like that. The boy recovered his balance and shouted "Hey!" with a angry look before the two locked eyes. It took Ysmir a moment to comprehend what he was seeing, but it was there and is as clear as day.
Ysmir spent several years of his relatively short life hunting and killing the dragons of Nirn that threatened the people. And in that time he made a friend of one and called another one his mentor. Out of all the people of Nirn, many of his peers would say that he knows more about dragons than anyone else alive. And that doesn't even count on Ysmir's Dovah Sil or Dragon Soul that allows him to absorb the knowledge of the dragons he's slain.
The seemingly hotheaded, pink haired boy in front of Ysmir was, for all intents and purposes, is as much of a dragon as Ysmir. There were vast differences though. The boy's eyes were the first thing that Ysmir noticed; The angled, reptilian-like irises are unmistakably draconic. The boy's aura shared similarities with the dragons of Nirn; large, bold lights containing many different colors. But there is something… off about the boy's soul. Ysmir couldn't put his finger on it though.
"You're the new guy, aren't you?" said the boy with a toothy smile, interrupting Ysmir's thoughts. Ysmir noticed the boys incisors were elongated, almost like dragon fangs. "Erza's recruit right? I'm Natsu Dragneel." Natsu held a hand out towards Ysmir in greeting. "Nice to meet ya!"
Ysmir blinked. "Not-sue." Ysmir tried out the name, it sounded odd on his tongue. "Hello, Natsu. My name is Ysmir Dovahkiin." He reached out to grasp the younger boy's hand. Ysmir wrestled with the thought of revealing his own draconic nature, but decided against it.
Not now, not with all these people around, he thought
"You have a funny name," said a new, muffled voice. It sounded like a young boy who had his mouth full of his favorite food.
Ysmir looked down and raised an eyebrow. Standing next to Natsu's sandaled feet was, of all things, another talking cat. Other than the color, height difference and lack of clothes, the blue cat looked a lot like Ysmir's own little companion. The blue cat had a large silver fish stuffed in his mouth, which explains his muffled voice.
"Yeezz-meer," sounded the blue cat after swallowing the bite of fish. "It sounds weird."
Ysmir's brow furrowed and he looked down towards the little Rekling. "It's a special name given to very special people, cat." Ysmir gave the cat a stern look. "Don't make fun."
Ysmir felt movement on his back as Khasi crawled free of his hood and make her way to stand on his shoulder. Keeping a small paw on Ysmir's ear for balance, she looked at the new people around her, the people sitting at the tables, Natsu, and finally the blue cat. The two felines locked eyes together, Khasi's were filled with innocent curiosity, while the blue cat looked stunned, surprised, to see one of his own kind.
"Happy!" shouted Natsu, his pointing finger jumping from Khasi to the blue cat and back again. "Happy," he repeated. "She looks just like you!"
The newly named 'Happy' stared dumbly at Khasi, who was excitedly tugging on Ysmir's ear and pointing towards Happy. Ysmir stood there, watching Natsu's and Happy's shock at seeing Khasi for the first time, thinking 'are talking cats a rare thing in this world?' . After a particular hard pull on his ear, Ysmir rolled his eyes and reached up to his shoulder and gently plucked Khasi from her perch and set her down on the ground in front of Happy. The blue cat was roughly twice the height of Khasi and the little red cat had to arch her neck in order to look him in the eyes with an excited smile on her face.
"Umm," started Happy, unsure how to react to Khasi's broad smile. "Hi there, My name is Happy. Do you like fish...?" Happy the cat hefted his silver fish into the air in offering before pausing to give Khasi a questioning look. "Wait, what's your name?" he asked.
Khasi's smile faltered and she looked up at Ysmir, who was watching the two cats silently. The look she gave him said "a little help please?"
Ysmir shrugged his shoulders and said, "Alright." Khasi beamed. Ysmir looked over to Happy, who was giving Khasi a confused look. "Her name is Khasi," he said, catching the blue cat's attention.
"Can't she speak?" questioned Natsu, who seemed to have gotten over his shock.
"She's always been quiet and shy," said Ysmir, crossing his arms over his chest. "But she can speak if she feels like it." Natsu nodded making an 'oh' sound.
Ysmir felt a slight tugging on his robes.
Looking down, he saw Khasi pointing to something hanging from Natsu's left hand. Following her line of sight, Ysmir saw a familiar glint of shining metal dangling from between the boy's closed fist. Ysmir's lips formed a thin line as he brought a hand up to his chest, searching for something that is no longer there.
"What is that," demanded Ysmir.
Natsu looked at Ysmir with a confused look. "What is what?"
"That," Ysmir pointed to Natsu's hand. "The amulet. Where'd you get it?"
Natsu's mouth formed an 'O' as he brought up his arm, letting the Amulet of Talos swing freely in the air between the two. "This? Happy found it." Ysmir's eyes snapped to the blue cat accusingly. Happy and Khasi were having a, more or less, one-sided conversation, so Ysmir's angry stare went unseen. Natsu's voice drew back his attention. "We were going to give it to Mira to see whose it is." the Fairy Tail mage said, swinging the amulet back and forth in his hands distractedly.
"Well you found him," said Ysmir, crossing his arms over his chest. "That amulet is mine."
Natsu stopped swinging the amulet to give Ysmir a skeptical look. After a moment he said "Alright. Here ya go."
Natsu handed the Amulet over to Ysmir, who snatched it out of his grasp and promptly slid the leather strand over his head and tied the ends together with a knot. How'd it come undone? he thought. Ysmir was about to thank the kid for giving the amulet back when Natsu beat him to the punch.
"You seem pretty fond of that necklace," said Natsu, watching Ysmir with curiosity, his head tilted to one side to get a better look at the gold-white amulet. "What's so special about it?"
Ysmir finished tying the knot and lowered his arms to his side. The thought of dismissing the boy crossed his mind, but thought better of it. "It's a…" Ysmir frantically thought up a story that wouldn't arouse suspicion. "It's a religious amulet from back home." Not a lie entirely, at least not from the common Nord's perspective. Ysmir really only wears it because Talo's has blessed it.
Natsu gave him a quizzical look. "You're not from around here, are you?"
"Where you from?"
Ysmir's eyes narrowed. "Up north."
Natsu crossed his arms over his chest. "How far up north?"
"Far enough," said Ysmir, feigning annoyance. Too many questions. "Why do you care?"
Natsu sniffed the air and looked seriously at Ysmir. "You smell like-"
Whatever the Fire Mage/Dragon Slayer was about to say was cut short as a loud bang resounded throughout the guild hall. Ysmir, Natsu, and everyone else in the room turned their head to see Erza Scarlet walk through the large wooden doors. She scanned the room, making her fellow guild members freeze in fear when her gaze passed over them. Her piercing gaze landed on Ysmir and with a silent gesture, she told him to follow her.
Ysmir silently thanked the Nine Divines. He looked back to Natsu to find him and Happy both missing, leaving behind only the silver fish on the wood floor. Confused, he looked down to Khasi. "Where'd they go?" he asked the red cat. Khasi shook her head and shrugged her shoulders. Ysmir looked around once more and whispered "Fine by me. Thank The Nine for your ferocity, Scarlet."
With that, Ysmir bent down and scooped up Khasi. Placing her on his shoulder, where she snuggled up against his neck. Ysmir turned to follow Erza out the guild hall's duel wooden doors. Ysmir could feel the stares and hear mumblings from the guild members as he walked past. Ysmir shut them out as the doors behind him slammed shut.
With a sigh, Ysmir ran a hand through his hair. "So," he started, energy entering his voice. "Is Natsu what I think he is, Erza?"
Back inside the Fairy Tail guild hall, the guild members slowly go back to their own conversations, with more than a few of them having the guild's newest member as its main topic. From behind the bar, Natsu and Happy cautiously poke their heads out to see if the coast is clear and that Erza is gone.
"What's wrong, Natsu?" asked Happy, looking over to his friend. "Is something bothering you?"
Natsu was silent for a moment, staring at the doors where Ysmir disappeared to. "That new guy."
"What about him?"
Memories of his early childhood crossed Natsu's mind; happiness, belonging, the warmth of broad red scales under his body. "He smells like my dad, Happy." skepticism showed on the blue cat's face. Natsu turned his head to look at his friend with a serious look in his eyes. "That guy, Yeez-meer, smells like Igneel."
/A Week Later/
"Where're you going?" Ysmir asked Erza as he squinted up at the large pile of luggage towering in front of him.
The sun is high in the sky and the sky was clear and blue as can be. The light wind coming from across the lake stirs up the air just enough to make the heat bearable for the man who has spent the majority of his life in freezing temperatures. The citizens of Magnolia are walking through the streets, going about their everyday lives, and sounds of camaraderie and laughter emanates through the Guild Hall's doors behind him.
Ysmir's white robes and dark gray, scaled armor looked out of place in this weather and several beads of sweat has appeared on his forehead but, out of sheer stubbornness, he refuses to get new clothes. His scabbard and daggers are still attached to his belt and his leather satchel on his hip. Khasi, Ysmir's young flying Khajiit-like companion, is sitting on his shoulder watching the two with wide curious eyes.
"A job," said Erza as she finished tying down the last knot. She's still wearing her casual Heart Kreuz armor with her shining chest plate and gauntlets. Her scarlet hair gently waved in the wind as she turned and faced Ysmir, her hands on her hips.
Ysmir's eyes narrowed. "What kind of job?"
"A town is being bothered by a monster. They want me to deal with it."
"Can I come with?" Ysmir almost wanted to beg. He's been stuck here in Magnolia for a week and was getting a little restless.
Before Erza could answer him, the doors of the guildhall opened and Natsu walked out. He was patting his round stomach and had a large, content grin on his face. Happy, Natsu's blue, talking, flying cat companion was in the air next to him. Ysmir didn't care much for the blue cat, he found his odd comments annoying, but he knows that he means well so Ysmir forced himself to tolerates him. Natsu, on the other hand, has been suspicious of him since they met that very first day. And the Fire Mage constantly tries to pick fights with Ysmir, so often in fact that it has become a daily occurrence.
"Ah, just who I was looking for," started Erza with a small smile gracing her lips.
"Natsu! Happy! Come here, please." She made it sound more like a command than a request.
Natsu had closed his eyes when he left the building, his content smile still on his face, so he didn't know Erza was there until she shouted his name. His smile disappeared, his eyes snapped open, and both the boy and the cat and he slowly looked in Erza's direction.
"Y-Yes, Erza," they both stuttered, drops of sweat dotting their foreheads. "W-what can we do for you, Erza?"
"I'll be out of town for a few weeks on a job," she said planting her boots shoulder length apart and crossing her arms over her chest. "And I need you, two boys, to keep an eye on my recruit-"
"What?" shouted Ysmir his eyes wide, hoping that he heard her wrong.
"-And make sure he doesn't do anything foolish," said Erza, ignoring Ysmir's outburst. "And I want you to take him on your next job. I can count on you, right Natsu?" Natsu nodded, more out of fear of Erza's wrath than compliance. "Good," she turned back to Ysmir and smirked.
Natsu stared at Ysmir
And Ysmir stared at Natsu.
Sitting on the table next to their respective friend is Happy and Khasi. Both felines were watching the humans with wide eyes. Khasi, sitting to Ysmir's left, is leaning against Ysmir's forearm was looking between the two with an apple slice sticking out of her mouth, while Happy sat to the right of Natsu eating a silver fish.
The pink haired boy spoke first. "So I have to take you on your first job, eh?" a smug smile formed on his face, revealing his fangs. "Think you can handle it, new guy?"
Ysmir's eyes narrowed and his hand twitched towards his empty sword sheath. "I don't need a babysitter," he growled. "And least of all by a punk kid who calls himself a dragon slayer."
It was Natsu's turn to frown. "Where's Igneel?" he asked, changing the subject.
Ysmir straightened in his seat. "I'll tell you again," he almost shouted. "I have no idea who this Igneel person is. So stop asking!"
With that the two boys went back to staring eachother down. They stayed like that that for several minutes until both Happy and Khasi nodded to eachother. Khasi crawled up to Ysmir's shoulder and tugged on his ear, while Happy reached up and tapped Natsu on the shoulder.
"Come on, Natsu," said Happy when Natsu glanced at him. "Let's go talk to Krov, he said he had some news for us."
Natsu grumbled something that Ysmir missed and got up from his seat and walked away. Ysmir followed the fire mage and the blue cat for a second before getting up himself. "I need a drink."
/A dozen or so drinks later.../
"-And then she just up and left!" Ysmir threw his head back and took a long drink from his cup. When it was empty, Ysmir slammed it down hard enough to shake the table. "I don't need a damn babysitter," he growled as his head landed on his forearm.
Erza left for that job of hers hours ago. Since then, Ysmir has found himself in the Guild Hall next to Cana, Fairy Tail's alcoholic wizard. The sun was high in the sky and beams of soft, yellow light are painting bright spots on the floor. The guild hall was still packed, with multiple groups sitting or standing around the large room talking and laughing together.
Ysmir didn't know it before, but he recently found out that most of the groups are teams; members of the guild that do jobs together and split the reward. A few members of the guild who was interested in him joining their teams approached Ysmir. But after Erza made it clear that he is 'not ready', much to his ire, and ended up scaring them all away, the requests have stopped.
There was a commotion in the room, Ysmir turned and saw Natsu and Gray butting heads once again. Gray is one of the guild members that Ysmir hasn't met much. Besides passing him in the 'Hall or in the city, they haven't seen much of each other at all. The few times Ysmir seen him, he was arguing with Natsu. The two seemed to attract each other like magnets, whenever they are in the same room they are instantly in each other's face trading insults or flat-out fighting. With a grunt, Ysmir turned back to his drink, which Mirajane filled when he wasn't looking and dropped his head back on his forearm. "Thanks, Mirajane," he grumbled.
"It can't be all that bad," said Cana distractedly. Ysmir could hear the sound of cards flipping and sliding on the wooden table. "Natsu is hardly the most dangerous person keep an eye on you. You could probably walk out the door right now and he wouldn't even notice."
Cana is wearing her usual attire, tight, dark pants on her legs and nothing but a blue bra covering her breasts, exposing the Fairy Tail mark on her side. Her long brown hair fell down her back and her piercing brown eyes gave him a disdainful look. Laying on the table around her are a multitude of colorful cards that she uses to work her magic, Ysmir has no idea how they work, but when he asked Cana said 'they're very useful in many different ways'. On the bench to her right, is a large barrel of beer.
As he watched, she picked it up with both hands and started drinking with loud gulps. When she set the barrel back down Ysmir could tell by the sound that it was nearly empty. Where all of it went, Ysmir may never know. The woman put away more beer and alcohol than everyone Ysmir knew, combined, and almost never showed signs of being drunk. Ysmir found the slim woman good drinking company and the two have spent several nights drinking and trading drinking stories.
"That's the first thing I thought of doing," stated Ysmir, still face down, "That supposed dragon slayer has been watching me like a starving Troll watches a goat." Ysmir put emphasis on the words 'dragon slayer' with disdain. Ever since he found out that the rowdy, pink haired boy hasn't once killed a dragon Ysmir refused to consider the boy as a dragon slayer. "He's been doing it ever since we met and it's starting to get annoying."
"I don't know why you say it that way, Ysmir," said Cana distractedly. More cards were flipped and shuffled. "Natsu does use Fire Dragon Slayer Magic, and that can only be learned from a Fire Dragon."
Ysmir blew out a breath through his nose. This new world and their different dragons sound just as odd to his liquor addled brain as they did the first time he read about them in the guild's library. Unlike the dragons in Nirn, the dragons of Earthland are tied to a specific element; fire, water, lightning, air and more. Supposedly, the only way for a human to learn Dragon Slayer magic is from the dragon itself, and once it was learned the user's body changed to take on attributes of the dragon he or her learned the magic from.
The thought of arguing against Cana crossed Ysmir's mind but he quickly dismissed it. "Whatever," Ysmir lifted his head up to take another drink before dropping it back onto the table.
A deep voice from behind Ysmir laughed. "Ysmir's just sore because Erza stole his fancy sword!" Ysmir turned in his seat to glare at Elfman. He was about to tell off the large Fairy Tail mage, But was interrupted by Cana.
"Erza took your sword?" asked Cana, eyes lighting up. "Why?"
"It was stupid…" groaned Ysmir. He heard Elfman chuckle behind him, but a quick glare shut him up. Ysmir turned back and cleared his throat before continuing. "Last night Erza was helping me find a place to swap or trade money and other valuables I had from back home into Jewels." Ysmir lifted up an arm and hooked a thumb in the general direction of the city. "We were talking as we were walking down the streets," His gauntleted hand fell to the table with a loud thump, "One thing led to another and I ended up betting that my sword is better than anything she had."
"Bad idea, Ysmir, Erza loves her armor and weapons. What happened next?"
"Erza is as cunning as her hair is scarlet, apparently." Ysmir lifted his head enough to flash Cana a quick smile before sulking again. He lifted his hand and used his index finger to make little circles in the air. "She twisted my words and convinced me to let her use the blade, but she didn't tell me that she'll be leaving for a job the next day."
Somewhere out in Fiore, Erza Scarlet sneezed as she experimentally swung a white bladed sword. She paused for a moment to wipe her nose on a handkerchief before the glowing white blade started moving through the air once again in graceful arcs and swings.
Ysmir's hand fell onto the table with a thud. "She said," Ysmir raised his voice in a poor imitation of Erza's, "that if this weapon performs as well as you say, I'll admit defeat." His voice returned to his usual gravely tone. "That and she'll pay my tab for the next month."
"Are you worried that you'll lose the bet?" asked Cana, leaning over the table.
Ysmir's head popped up, and with a smirk he said, "Heck no. Erza is going to end up paying my tab."
Cana's brow furrowed. "Then what are you upset about?"
Ysmir's head dropped back onto the table. "I just feel… naked without my sword." Ysmir's voice hardened. "That, and she wanted me to 'Stay out of trouble' and 'learn from a member of the guild while she's gone'." Ysmir's lips curled into a snarl. "She never told me she meant Natsu. I'm not sure how it's possible with that idiot."
"Well, Natsu's jobs usually end up with lots of explosions. Maybe those will get your mind off of your sword?"
Ysmir grumbled something intelligible and took another drink. Behind him, on the other side of the guild hall, Ysmir could hear Natsu trying to pick fights with several guys at the same time. An explosive sigh left him and he pointed his index finger towards the ceiling. "She even convinced Khasi to keep an eye on me."
Cana looked around the large room. Flying above the heads of her friends and guild mates is Happy and Khasi with smiles on their faces. They were playing tag or some similar game; Happy was trying to keep away from the smaller Khasi, who was struggling to catch up. Much like the rest of the guild, Cana was surprised when Khasi popped out of Ysmir's robes. Many compared her to Happy, but other than the two being talking flying cat's, the two felines are total opposites. But they've become good friends since that first day.
"So," started Cana, trying to change the subject. "Erza told Natsu to take you on his next job, right?"
"Yeah," grunted Ysmir.
"That doesn't sound too bad." said Cana as she looked back to the hunched form of Ysmir.
"It's not," he said reluctantly. "I'm starting to get bored." Ysmir straightened in his seat. "At least this way I can go see more of this word." Ysmir winced and looked over to Cana.
If Cana noticed his slip up, she didn't show. She went back to flipping her cards and laying them out on the table. Ysmir's decision to keep the fact that he's from another world a secret still stands, and as far as things go, he's done a decent job. He doesn't want any trouble to come from it. Besides, if the Princess can't mess with this world and if he can keep coming up with lies to explain his past and magic, there's no way for anyone to know.
"But before I can agree to travel with that kid," continued Ysmir as if nothing happened, "I'm going to need a few more of these." He brought his cup to his mouth and drained it. "Another please, Mira!" He shouted.
"Be right there, Ysmir!" he heard her shout.
"Hey, new guy!" Ysmir set his cup down on the table and turned to see Natsu Dragneel standing by the guild hall's entrance with a pack and bedroll on his back. "Come on," he shouted impatiently. "We got a train to catch"
"Already?" mumbled Ysmir as he stood up from his seat. "And what in Oblivion is a train?" Ysmir swung his legs over the bench and nodded to Cana. "Talk to you later, Cana."
The Fairy Tail mage smiled and said, "Have fun with Natsu and Happy, Ysmir!"
Ysmir walked to the guild's entrance to see an impatient Natsu tapping his sandaled feet on the floor with Happy flying above his left shoulder. "About time," he muttered. "Come on, Happy, let's go!" Without another word, the boy ran down the street with Happy in tow.
Ysmir crossed his arms over his chest. "Well, he's in a hurry." A light weight landed on his shoulder and Ysmir felt Khasi's head bob up and down in agreement. "Well, at least we didn't have to wait long. Let's go." Ysmir walked out the large wooden doors and followed Natsu down the street and into the city.
Ysmir stopped inside the large building on the edge of Magnolia. In front of him, past the hoard of people bustling about, is one of the largest pieces of machinery Ysmir has ever set his eyes on. As he watched, the large, black machine whistled, sending a cloud of smoke billowing out of its large, cone-shaped smoke stack. "So that's a train." muttered Ysmir, admiring the metal beast. He felt Khasi poke her head out of his pocket and nod.
Over the heads of Magnolia's citizens and visitors, Ysmir noticed a familiar pink head climb up into one of the large boxes behind the train. "There you are," said Ysmir as he made his way through the crowd after Natsu and Happy.
From a dark corner of the train station, a shadowy figure watched the Dragonborn with a smile on her ghostly lips. "Go find the spirit mage, Dovahkiin." the figure chuckled silently. "She may be useful."
Up ahead, Ysmir stopped and turned around. He felt someone watching him. He scanned the crowd, his eyes passing over the now empty corner. That presence he felt was familiar…
"All aboard!" shouted someone in the crowd.
Ysmir looked back to the 'train' and saw people climbing into the boxes. An uneasy feeling entered Ysmir's stomach as he cast one more look out over the thinning crowd before finding the car Natsu and Happy entered. Im sure it's nothing, he thought as he climbed up into the train car. With a final, screeching whistle the train started moving down the tracks.
A/N: Yay! Another chapter done! And, for those of you who haven't already guessed it, this chapter marks the end of my little prologue and the beginning of the actual show/manga! Woot woot!
Now, before y'all go, I'll just ask again if anyone has suggestions and/or corrections to the characters of Fairy Tail I've mentioned in this chapter. Good or bad, I believe it'll help!
Till next time, guys and gals!