This is a rewrite of "A Long Journey" (now renamed The Prince of Peace). I wasn't able to work on the story for a long time - because I was working on another story, because of this second rewrite, and because of other things that came up. Some elements remain the same, while others have been drastically changed. I have a large backlog to work with, so I'll be updating it weekly at the very least for a while. I can't express enough thanks to everyone that's been reading since inception, and I hope you'll continue to do so.
As before, I'll be incorporating other mythos into the story, although it's mostly the world elements and even then there are significant additions. I've tried to make the chapters longer and interesting and have worked on improving my writing overall. I'll be doing a bit more worldbuilding as well (or at least will be trying my best at it).
The main OC will remain fairly OP up until after the Grand Magic Games end (which is roughly when I'll be diverging a fair bit from the main storyline and when threats begin to escalate). If you guys would like to offer any critique on how I can improve, I'd love to hear it.
01/14/2017 - Ah, the second time I've broken 100,000 words on this story! I want to take a moment to thank you all - to those that read for giving time to the story; to those that favorite for wanting to be updated on its progress; and to those that review (whether praiseworthy or critical) for taking a moment to shed a light on what you think. I appreciate it all very much.
It was a dark and stormy night in the magical town of Magnolia - a far cry from the bright and sunny days that usually enveloped it. Street lamps were lit all around the town, giving it a faint and angelic glow. Despite the inclement weather, large swaths of people were heading up, down, and around - going about their business with the usual cheer and merriment.
The weather didn't do anything to dampen anyone's spirits, however - in fact, one could say it bolstered them; a nice and welcome change of pace. Despite how peaceful and warm endless sunshine was, one eventually tired of it - because even endless sunshine eventually became monotonous. Children stood with their heads turned up and mouths open, trying to catch some rainfall. People sat under the awnings of cafes, enjoying pastries and nice, hot cups of coffee and hot chocolate as they gossiped about the usual going on's and happenings in and around the beautiful Kingdom of Fiore.
"Fairy Tail is at it again," someone said exasperatedly, although a hint of fondness could be detected in their voice.
"Ha. I wouldn't pounce on those kids, mate. We're lucky to have them, you know. They keep this place lively. Sure, they get rambunctious here and there, but it's all in good fun, eh?" someone at another table commented. As others around him heard, they chuckled and nodded in agreement. Fairy Tail was indeed the life of this town.
"What about old Gildarts? Has he come back yet? I remember seeing him when I was a bit younger," a lady at an adjacent table asked.
"Whew, I think you missed him. He was here a little while back, but I think he just recently left again to go on another mission. You know him - the Ace of Fairy Tail! Can't stay in one place too long or he'll get bored. I suppose it's all as well, though. Whenever he comes around, I have to worry about my daughter," an old man said with a sigh. A few others laughed but sagely nodded in agreement; Gildarts loved women.
"Young Natsu is going to follow in his footsteps, mark my words. Nobody can keep that kid down. He's burned down my shop at least six times by now. Always pays for it in the end, though," a shopkeeper exclaimed to laughs all around.
"I have to admit, he's pretty cute. Him and the Ice Wizard that's always around - Gray, I think his name is?" a young adult woman commented. A few others murmured their agreement, much to the chagrin of the men around them.
"Sure, sure - but come on, we all know who the most beautiful woman in Fairy Tail is!" a man yelled excitedly. He was met with a single name:
"MIRAJANE!" countless other men yelled, toasting to the resident model of the guild. One would think that the woman would be just as chagrined, but they were in agreement: Mirajane was something else.
"Or Erza. But she's… kind of scary," another man said, looking around to make sure that she wasn't there. A few shivered, but the ladies mostly giggled at the behavior of the men. But they knew in the back of their minds not to mess with Erza.
"Can I get you anything, sir?" the waitress asked a man sitting off in a dark corner of the building. He had a dripping wet hood covering his eyes, evidence of his recent arrival in the town. As he looked up slightly, she saw a small smile.
"Nothing in particular, but perhaps you could tell me a bit about the guild everyone's talking about?" he asked.
"Oh, Fairy Tail? It's the number one guild in Fiore! Their guild hall is quite close by - about half a mile up the main road. Are you thinking of joining?" she asked.
"Mmm, perhaps. Thank you, miss," he said before getting up and taking his leave.
'Fairy Tail, hmm?' he thought as he began to make his way up the main road.
One building, in particular, was rowdy as usual. It didn't matter where you were - right next door, a mile away, or clear in the mountains - one could hear the din of what sounded like a fight coming from inside. It was extremely bright in comparison to the buildings around it - the brightest star in an otherwise dim and dark sky, as much as Sol was to Earthland. It stood at the end of the central path of the town, perched on the coast which was simply a dark expanse at this time. Beyond the telltale signs of the rain pattering on the water, one could mistake it for a deep abyss.
The five-story building was a beautiful work of architecture. At the top was a large, golden bell surrounded by six pillars and a roof that shielded it from the rain. Whenever it was sounded, it echoed through the entire town - and usually meant that something was about to be destroyed and that the people should get inside. Directly under it was a banner - a flag of red with a golden border, with a white symbol in the middle. The banner was always bright, lit by braziers of magical fire that never went out, even in the rain or gusty wind. A floor below, there was a large balcony that went all around the building so one could get a beautiful from anywhere. Below that stood two massive wooden doors - sentinels that led into a whole new world. The building was surrounded by a gate with a large portcullis and the name "Fairy Tail" was etched into the metal sign above the gate.
The sign was probably a bit necessary, as this particularly rambunctious guild was well known throughout Magnolia and the Kingdom of Fiore. Countless legends - of the past, present, and future - were born here. Magic was the norm - it was treasured and lauded as opposed to feared, as it was in other places. And one thing that made Fairy Tail very special was the amount of magic that it was full of - both in terms of power and variety.
Inside the guild, it was a non-stop party. Everyone got along very well and considered themselves to be part of a very large family - although one with a considerable amount of friendly rivalry. As people bickered, laughed, and enjoyed themselves, the master of the guild smiled warmly at the scene from the second floor of the building.
"Ah, these children," Master Makarov happily sighed. Although they were prone to destroying all sorts of things - walls, building, entire cities, etc., he couldn't help but love them all dearly as though they were his own.
'This is what a guild should be like - full of life and color. Although, if they were a bit more careful, it would be a lot better. I swear, any more bills or complaints and I'll be able to add another wing to guild made entirely of paper,' he thought, closing his eyes as he thought of all the paperwork he still had to go through. His adopted children could all stand to be a little bit more careful - although he doubted that that would happen anytime soon.
Master Makarov was a tiny old man - one with decades of knowledge and wisdom. One of the Ten Wizard Saints (a governing body of Ishgar, independently selected by another governing body - the Magic Council; there was some overlap between the members of the two bodies) he had a great amount of power - both magical and political (although he often shirked his duties, preferring to stay with his guild and adopted children). Although seemingly frail, his magic radiated off of him like a waterfall - his very presence palpable. Over the years, he turned Fairy Tail into the greatest guild in Fiore, and perhaps even all of Ishgar - in terms of both strength and kindness. The guild accepted all members that wished to join, turning away no one so long as they had even the slightest amount of magic flowing through their being. Makarov was special in this regard - he had the power to get through people's thick skulls and make them see the error of their ways. He had even convinced and allowed one-time foes to join his guild - knowing that the weight of not turning them from the destructive path they were on would weigh heavily on his mind.
His peaceful thought process was suddenly broken by a loud crash and bang. He sighed as he identified the source.
'Looks like Gray and Natsu are at it again. Half of these complaints are directly about them!' he thought in an exasperated tone. The two powerful wizards were also two of the most destructive he'd ever known.
"You want to go, flame-brain?!" shouted the ice-make wizard, Gray Fullbuster. With the ability to create and give form to ice out of nothing, Gray was a formidable opponent. He made a fist of his right hand and put it in the palm of his left, retracting both to his left side. A frost began to encircle him, dropping the temperature in his immediate area.
"Let's go, snow stripper!" shouted back Natsu Dragneel. A fire dragon slayer, Natsu was one of the most formidable wizards in the guild. He was raised and taught his magic by the King of the Fire Dragons, Igneel. Natsu took on his adopted father's traits - arrogance, a fiery temper, and a tremendous love for his family.
"Snow stri- oh, for the love of…" said an exasperated Gray, looking down and noticing his clothes were gone. He had a habit of unconsciously getting rid of them, to the chagrin of many around him - men and women alike.
"Don't worry my beloved, I have them!" cried Juvia Loxar, a blue haired water wizard who had been smitten with Gray since the first time she saw him. A powerful wizard in her own right, Juvia was typically reduced to a blubbering tween seeing her celebrity crush for the first time whenever she laid her eyes upon Gray. The unreciprocated love was, oddly enough, not that creepy - in fact, it bordered on adorable.
"Where's Erza when you need her?" grumbled Lucy Heartfilia, a beautiful blonde Celestial Wizard. She scanned the guild for a red haired beauty - Erza Scarlet - hoping she would break up the fight between Natsu and Gray as she usually did. Little did she know that the armor wearing Miss Scarlet was close by, but completely detached from the situation as she was engrossed in a particularly spicy novel lent to her by Levy McGarden, a blue haired beauty that was undoubtedly one of the smartest people in the room - if not the smartest person in the room.
"Oh don't worry about them, Lucy. Boys will be boys, after all," chirped Mirajane Strauss, white-haired bombshell and resident model, as she leaned over the bar. She thought that Natsu and Gray's antics were adorable and natural - after all, fire and ice don't mix well.
"Thatsssss *hiccup* right, Lushy," drawled Cana Alberona, the bra clad drunk of the guild. The brunette beauty had just downed another barrel of particularly strong alcohol that, surprisingly, seemed to take effect on her.
"Alright Cana, I think that's enough for the night. I'm cutting you off," Mira said to Cana, who had just rested her head on the bar.
"I still don't get how she's alive. That much alcohol could probably kill a giant!" Lucy whispered to Mira.
"Well, Cana is one of a kind. Just like everyone else here," Mira replied as she looked lovingly at the guild. They were the closest thing she had to family and she was extremely protective of all of them. This led to her position as a sort of quasi-older sister to everyone; they adored (and some would say feared) her.
"I guess so," Lucy said, sighing but smiling as she observed the raucous scene. Natsu and Gray were beginning to roll around the guild, to the delight and excitement of most of the guild. They picked their favorite and began cheering for them.
"How long do you think it'll be until they rope someone else in?" Lucy asked Mira.
"Not that long. Probably gonna be Elf, if I had to guess," Mira sighed.
"Speaking of which, where is he? I don't see him around," Lucy inquired, looking around for Mira's big brother. The macho-man type, Elfman was typically seen boasting about said manliness. He was usually the first to step into the fray, after Natsu and Gray; although right now, he was conspicuously absent.
"Not sure. Looks like Lisanna isn't here either, though. I guess they probably went out or something," Mira said.
"In this rain?! Who'd be dumb enough to do that?!" Lucy asked. As she looked around, she let out an audible groan. "Oh, that's right. Us."
"Aww, we aren't that bad," Mira said in her usual upbeat tone.
"The girls aren't the problem. It's not even most of the guys! It's specifically those two idiots," Lucy deadpanned.
"I'm honestly kind of surprised," Cana said, recovering ridiculously quickly. She rubbed her eyes and blinked a few times to readjust her vision.
"About what?" Lucy wondered.
"That half the guild isn't destroyed yet," Cana smirked, eliciting another groan from Lucy. With a deep sigh, Lucy headed on over to try and stop the two.
"Think she'll stop them?" Cana asked Mira.
"Not a chance. Maybe if Gajeel stepped in, they could tire themselves out. But I'm not too sure of that happening," Mira said, surreptitiously pointing across the guild. Cana giggled as she saw what Mira was trying to show her.
"Gajeel and Levy. I never would've figured them together. Kinda cute. Kinda weird," Cana said.
"Aww, don't be like that! They're so adorable together!" Mira squealed in delight.
"Mmhm. But what about you, Mira? When was the last time you even went out on a date?" Cana wondered.
"Mmm… I dunno. A while, I suppose. We've all been so busy, I suppose I haven't had the time. Doesn't help that the last guy I went out with turned out to be a complete asshole," Mira sighed as she turned around to stock some more alcohol. Cana observed the white-haired beauty go about her business, a thoughtful expression on her face. It had been a while since either of them out in such a manner.
"What about Laxus? He's pretty hot," Cana suggested. Mira let out a giggle at the suggestion.
"Oh, I don't think that'd work out," she said with a wink.
"Why not?" Cana asked in surprise. Laxus was one of the most attractive men in the guild, despite his current hiatus.
"Just trust me on this," Mira said slyly.
"Freed? Bixlow?" Cana suggested two more attractive males. She looked around the guild but couldn't find them.
"Nope. And I don't think Bixlow and I would work. He's into girls that are a bit… younger," Mira sighed.
"Natsu? Gray?" Cana wondered.
"Natsu's like a little brother. And-," Mira began before Juvia was suddenly upon them, her eyes boring deep into Cana and Mira' soul.
"Gray. Mine. No. Touch!" she warned them. Mira and Cana quickly nodded. Satisfied in her position, the water mage retreated back to her beloved's side. Glancing at each other, Mira and Cana broke into a fit of giggles.
"Yeah, as you can see that would never work," Mira laughed.
"Nab? Vijeeter? Macao? Wakaba?" Cana said.
"Nab and Vijeeter are like brothers as well. Same with Jet and Droy. Macao and Wakaba? No way. Married. I'm not a homewrecker," Mira said.
"You could be," Cana said in a sing-song voice, eliciting a smirk from the beauty. She simply shook her head again.
"That leaves… Master Makarov and Gildarts. No. Fucking. Way. Too old," Cana deadpanned, her head falling to the counter again.
"Ha. And there you go. And there's really no other guild nearby. Unless Mr. Right walks in through the doors, something tells me it's going to stay like this for a while," Mira said.
"Ugh. It so should not be this hard you and I. Anyways, I'm gonna go get drunk with Laki. See you, Mira," Cana said, quickly grabbing a drink and heading over to another guild member. With a sigh, Mira got back to work - the conversation running through her mind.
As he walked down the center road, the Fairy Tail guild hall became larger and larger. On the sides he saw people bustling about, attending to their own business and trying their best to not get wet - a fool's errand in this deluge. Nobody seemed to notice him, which suited him well. He had gotten used to being alone - it had been a while since he had even interacted with another human. And, after his long journey, all he wanted was a nice hot meal and a warm bed. Figuring out what came after would no doubt fall into place.
'Maybe I should've taken her on her offer and eaten. Oh well,' he thought, a hand on his grumbling stomach.
As he drew closer to the guild hall, he could hear the occupants talking and laughing. Witnessing such joy with any of his senses brought a smile to his lips.
'Feels good to see civilization again, at least' he thought.
Finally, he crossed the large wooden doors and was bathed in a bright, warm light. He could see the people around him interacting with each other happily. A bluenette with glasses was engrossed in a book and surrounded by three men. Two were peering over her shoulder from either side - one with orange hair tied up at the top of his head, wearing brown suspenders with a purple shirt and the other with black hair tied up at the top of his head, wearing a white button-up shirt with a yellow jacket. Across from her sat a man with long, wild, black hair that went down the length of his back. He had a stern expression set on his face, which was adorned with metal rivets. On his shoulder sat a black cat-like creature with a scar above his left eye.
'Hmm… are these two a couple? Interesting pairing, to say the least,' the new arrival thought. Luckily no one had noticed him as he made his way through the hall, taking in the sights. A man was standing in front of a bulletin board covered with flyers with numbers on them; two guys, one with pink hair and one with jet black hair, were fighting with each other. A tiny bluenette with hair reaching below her waist was playing with a white cat-like creature and a blue cat-like creature, similar to the black one he had just seen.
'What are those things? Kind of cute but… never mind. Shouldn't be surprised there are new creatures here,' he thought to himself. Answers could wait.
As he was around three-quarters of the way towards the back, he felt the gaze of someone watching him from the second story. At least one person had been made aware of his presence - to be expected, he figured.
He walked over to the bar which was now empty save for a white haired maiden attending it. He stood still for a second, admiring her. Despite coming across countless beautiful women on his journey, this one was a cut above them. Her silky white hair went down her back, save for a small tuft that was tied at the top. She wore a well fitting dress that hugged and accentuated her curves, cutting off around the shins - conservative, to say the least.
Mira looked on in surprise as she saw the new arrival take his seat. It wasn't often that Fairy Tail had unannounced guests, and it seemed as though this one made his way throughout the entire guild without alerting anyone to his presence. She couldn't sense any particular magic on him, but shelved the thought as she saw him shiver slightly - he was completely drenched.
"Hello, I'm Mirajane Strauss! I don't think I've ever seen you around Magnolia before," she said, smiling as she greeted him. Mira finally began to take in his appearance. He wore a beautiful hood and cloak - black velvet it seemed, with a symmetrical white tree emblazoned on the back of it. Above the top of the tree was a winged crown and along its sloped branches were seven stars. Underneath the cloak, she made out the hilt of a sword - the make she did not know - as well as a black vest and pants. As he removed his hood, she took in his handsome features. His coal black eyes twinkled warmly in the well-lit hall. His hair was wet, thanks to the rain outside, and come down to the tip of his shoulders - black as a starless night. She could see a bit of stubble across his rugged face.
'Hmm… pretty handsome,' she thought, smirking inwards - the conversation with Cana was still fresh on her mind. As her eyes trailed back to his sword, however, Mira put herself on guard. With all that had transpired lately, she couldn't afford to be weary.
The visitor noticed her tense up ever so slightly - a small movement most would likely miss. He wasn't offended at all - a stranger showing up in what was essentially someone's house? He'd be more surprised if she didn't react as she did.
"Sorry for intruding at such a late hour, Ms. Strauss. I've been traveling for a while and this is my first time in Magnolia. Needless to say, I'm a bit weary," he said in a gentle voice, smiling at the beauty.
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to make you feel unwelcome. It's just that we don't often get visitors in this kind of weather - or this late at night. And please, call me Mira - everyone does. What are you doing here, if you don't mind my asking?" Mira wondered.
"I don't mind at all Ms. - sorry, Mira. Like I said, I've been traveling for a while now, on and off the beaten path. This is my first time in the Kingdom of Fiore, and Magnolia by extension. I suppose you could say that I'm an explorer or adventurer of sorts - I like to travel, and there's still so much of the world to be seen," he explained, taking in his surroundings.
"That sounds exciting! Well, allow me to welcome you to Magnolia and the Fairy Tail guild. Oh! I'm sorry! You said you're new, so you might not know what a guild is. A guild is basically an association of wizards - it's a place where they gather, form teams, and go on jobs. You can find jobs to go on at the board over there," Mira said, pointing to the board. "Which reminds me - are you here to join? Or are you just passing through?"
"Hmm… well, if I did want to join - what's the process like? Do I apply or…?" the visitor trailed off.
"That's all it takes my boy," said a new voice, walking along the bar. Wearing a bright orange outfit, Master Makarov made his way to the new arrival.
"Oh, hello master! I didn't see you there," Mira said happily to Master Makarov.
"So, you want to join Fairy Tail, eh? What's your name, son?" Makarov asked. The visitor took in the appearance of the diminutive man but wasn't fooled. He could sense a significant amount of magic and power emanating from Master Makarov - he was obviously someone you didn't want to mess with.
"Hi there. My name is Strider. And yes, I think I might. Although perhaps you could talk a bit about the other guilds around here? I'd like to make an informed decision," Strider said.
"A smart question, Strider. Certainly, I'll share some information about other guilds. You already know a bit about Fairy Tail - we're the top guild in Fiore! That's not just boasting and tooting our own horn, though. We have quite a few strong wizards - those two that are fighting are Natsu Dragneel and Gray Fullbuster, a Fire Dragon Slayer and Ice-Make wizard - two of our best. The blue haired child and that man with the metal studs are Wendy Marvel and Gajeel Redfox - Sky and Iron Dragon Slayers respectively. The armored knight is Erza Scarlet, an accomplished fighter, and the white-haired giant and the little girl next to him are Elfman and Lisanna Strauss - and Mira here is their eldest sister. All three are accomplished take-over mages," Makarov ended as he pointed at Mira's siblings. who had just re-entered - soaking wet.
"Oh, you're too kind Master," Mira said with a pleasant smile.
"Some of our members have gone home - no doubt you'll meet them tomorrow, though. And I'm Makarov Dreyar, the master of this guild. Nice to meet ya!" Makarov said, shaking Strider's hand.
"Now, there are several other guilds - Blue Pegasus ("Oh, they're so sweet!" Mira interjected quickly), Lamia Scale, Quatro Cerberus, Twilight Ogre - and so much more, that I can't remember them all. Each guild has their own strengths and weaknesses. Blue Pegasus, for example, has a bunch of pretty boys and girls! Might be the prettiest guild in all of Fiore, in fact! Quatro Cerberus - the wildest guild in the country! Or so they like to think. I don't think that Goldmine gets as many complaints as I do..," Makarov grumbled, rubbing his temples. Strider looked to Mira, who just smiled at him.
"You're trailing off, master," Mira said
"Hmm? Oh, right! Now where was I… ah, yes! Lamia Scale says they're balanced - but trust me, they're not. Way too serious and up themselves. They need to learn what it means to have fun - and no one better than Fairy Tail to teach them!" Makarov said, a fist in the air. Strider chortled at the excitement the old man conjured up. Despite his age, he could tell that he was young at heart. Mira let out an exasperated sigh at hearing the master of the guild talk that way about Lamia Scale - despite how right he might be.
"Master! That's not very nice!" she chided him.
"But you know it's true, Mira! Like I said, Strider, no better guild than Fairy Tail! And that's not just favoritism. We're like a family here. We take care of our own. I truly believe that's what makes Fairy Tail so special amongst all the guilds," Makarov said, turning serious at last. Strider saw the passion in his eyes and nodded.
"That sounds right up my alley, I think. Perhaps it's short notice… perhaps I should take a moment to look around the other guilds - but I think I'd like to join your guild. If you'll have me, that is," Strider said.
"Of course, we'll have you, my boy! Mira, could you get the stamp while I talk with our newest member for a bit? Some food for him as well - you must be starving," Makarov said worriedly, taking in his otherwise disheveled status. The rain was not kind to him.
"Certainly, although I don't wish to impose…," Strider said before Mira interjected.
"Oh my! How could I have forgotten to get you something to eat?! I'm so sorry. I'll be right back!" she squealed. Taking one more look at Strider, she hurried into the kitchen to prepare something for hum to eat.
"So, Strider my boy, what kind of magic do you use? That's the most important thing when joining a Mages Guild. Don't worry if you're not developed in it yet, though - that's what we're here for!" Makarov said. Finally tearing his eyes away from the door Mira went through, Strider looked at Makarov.
"Sorry about that, Master Makarov. My magic. Right. Well, I think I should preface with the fact that I'm already fairly adept at using it. I've uh… spent a lot of training in difficult situations. As I told Mira, I'm a bit of an adventurer and explorer - so I've had plenty of time to get it up to scratch. I was a soldier for a while, so I managed to pick up a few things here and there. My preference, however, is telekineses," Strider said as he pointed to an empty beer mug that Cana left on the table. Palm side down, he pointed at the cup and lifted his right forefinger slightly. To Makarov's joy and astonishment, the cup began to levitate.
"My! That's quite impressive, child! Most mages control their own magic through telekineses, but this is the first time that I've ever seen someone else influence other objects through it. You mentioned that you picked up a few things here and there. More kinds of magic?" Makarov asked, intrigued.
"More or less. My sword, for example, is imbued with magic from back home. It serves as a wonderful weapon against particular threats - where it's more effective. Other magic, however… probably not the best setting to use it in," Strider said with a wry smile as he looked around the building. Makarov nodded.
"I understand. Otherwise, very impressive, my boy! I think you'll fit right in here. Anyways, I better make the announcement that we have a new recruit! Give me a shout when you're done, Mira!" Makarov said as Mira reentered the room.
"Here we go! This is the stamp of our guild. Where would you like it?" Mira asked Strider sweetly.
"Here is fine, Mira," he said as he rolled up a bit of his right sleeve, exposing only a small portion of his wrist.
She pressed the stamp to his skin and when she removed the press, he saw a black symbol in the shape of the Fairy Tail symbol.
"Welcome to Fairy Tail, Strider," Mira said kindly.
"Thank you," he replied with a smile as he began to dig into the meal she prepared for him - eggs and bacon with a side of roasted and charred tomatoes and toast.
"You seem hungry," Mira giggled as she watched him scarf it down.
"Oh, you've no idea. Pardon my table manners," Strider said.
"Not at all. We're ready here, Master!" she called out.
"ATTENTION EVERYONE!" Makarov yelled loudly over the din. Almost immediately, everyone stopped talking and looked up at him.
"Hell. That guy can shout," Strider said, impressed. Makarov had a booming and commanding voice, all the more surprising for his size.
"You've also joined the most rambunctious guild in all of Fiore. He has to be loud when the situation calls for it," Mira giggled.
"GOOD! Now listen up! I'd like to introduce someone to you all! This here is Strider!" Makarov roared, pointing to the new arrival. Strider felt everyone's eyes snap to him. Looking through the guild hall, he noted that there were quite a few beautiful women. His eyes soon fell on a particular pink haired boy, though - who was grinning happily at him.
"I expect everyone to make him feel right at home! Now Strider… you've joined Fairy Tail and you have an idea of what it means. There are three important rules that you have to abide by, however! It's often the case that we grow up and want to see more of what this world has - necessitating a leave from the guild. You may freely go as you wish, so long as you abide by these three rules: One! You must never reveal sensitive information about Fairy Tail to others for as long as you live. Two! You must never use former contacts met through your being in the guild for personal gain! And three! Though our paths may diverge, you must continue to live out your life with all your might, you must never consider your own life to be something insignificant, and you must never forget about your friends for as long as you may live! Do you understand?" Makarov asked, pure passion in his voice as he repeated his guilds creed. Stride paused for a moment before nodding.
"Yes. I do," he answered in a quiet voice - one that was heard throughout.
"Good. And now the most important part of welcoming our newest member: PARTY!" Makarov roared, his hands raised high to the sky. Everyone let out a cheer before rushing the newest Fairy. Natsu was the first to reach him.
"Strider! My names Natsu! Come on, let's fight!" the dragon slayer yelled as he flashed a toothy grin. Strider chuckled at his enthusiasm.
"You idiot! He's new - he doesn't want to fight just yet!" piped in Lucy, exasperated at Natsu's good natured belligerence. As she looked at Strider, he looked at her. Lucy felt a blush creep on her cheeks as his twinkling black eyes stared into her wide brown ones.
'Wow, he's… really hot,' she thought, giving him a small smile that he returned. Doing a quick scan of the guild, she couldn't find anyone that measured up to him in terms of attractiveness - something about his features simply drew her in. Mira noted Lucy staring and smirked inwards; no doubt she was having the same thought about the newest arrival that she was.
"So what kind of magic do you use?" inquired Wendy, looking up at him. He was a solid 6'4, towering above the tiny Dragon Slayer. Wendy grumbled a bit at that; everyone was taller than her in this guild.
"Where are you from? I've never seen that symbol before!" asked Levy, intrigued by the symbol on the back of his cloak.
"Now, now - settle down a bit!" Mira ordered everyone, worried about overloading the newcomer so quickly. "Let's give him some room to breathe. Strider's had a long journey and I'm sure that he could use some food and drink before he answers too many questions."
"Ha. It's fine, Mira. I don't mind. Let's see… Natsu, is it? I'm afraid there's no fight in me for tonight. But perhaps you and I could spar tomorrow?" Strider suggested.
"You're on!" Natsu agreed eagerly, punching the air. His blue flying cat circled his head with a similar amount of glee.
"To answer your question, Miss, I use telekinesis magic," Strider said to the blue haired Dragon Slayer. He pointed at her cat and made her levitate.
"Wow," Wendy looked on in an awe that only a child could achieve as she saw her companion, a white flying cat, trying to regain control of her body.
"You've had your fun! Now put me down!" she said to Strider in a haughty tone.
"My apologies, Miss," Strider said, apologizing. It didn't surprise him that the cat could talk - or if it did, he didn't show it.
"Carla. I'm an Exceed, as are the other two," she said. Carla pointed at the black Exceed and said "Lily," and the blue Exceed and said "Happy."
"A pleasure," Strider said, as he nodded at the two. He got used to seeing strange creatures in his travels - although they weren't all this adorable.
"The pleasure is all my mine. Impressive magic you got there," said Lily, intrigued by the telekineses.
"Thank you. And to answer your question, I come from the Northern Continent," Strider said, smiling at Levy. He noted the man with rivets shift a bit aa he turned his attention to her; no doubt they were on the precipice of a relationship.
Levy's gasp didn't go unnoticed by the others, as their eyes darted between her and Strider, who had a grim smile on his face.
"I wasn't aware of any connections between Ishgar and the Northern Continent. In fact, besides Alvarez, I don't think we have any communication with other continents - and even that's been ceased," Levy said. Others looked on in confusion.
"You're quite right. I don't recall any ships making the journey across the Great Sea successfully. The waters are quite perilous - even the greatest ships are often ripped apart there. Whirlpools and water spouts are a constant danger, not to mention the large flora and fauna that can trap or destroy ships with ease. My powers don't just affect what's around me, though. I can use them on myself," Strider said. He asked everyone to give him some room as he began to levitate a foot off the ground. His new guild mates looked on in awe. Natsu was the first to speak.
"That. Is. AWESOME! I thought only wind wizards like Eribor could fly like that?!" he exclaimed.
"You idiot, it's Erigor, not Eribor. But I thought so too. That's pretty neat," Gray said as he looked on in wonder and excitement. He didn't admit it, but he wanted to try his hand at Strider as well; he seemed to be quite formidable.
'Guess I can kick his ass when Flame Brain can't!' he thought to himself.
"Thank you. It took a lot of concentration and power to fly over here, though. Put me out of commission for close to a week before I continued my journey throughout Fiore. Could barely move, let alone walk," Strider said wryly. Levy nodded, staring intently at him. Now wasn't the right time, but she wanted to get him alone soon so she could interview him.
'A mage from the Northern Continent! NO WAY!' she thought excitedly.
"Why'd you come all the way over here?" Gjaeel asked gruffly. He grimaced as he saw Levy shoot him a dark look for his disrespectful tone. Looking between the two, Strider smiled inwards; there was undoubtedly some chemistry there.
"Well, can't say that I had any sort of plan when I set out. I flew South, figuring there was something here. Lucky I was right, I suppose. I heard people talk about guilds and Fairy Tail, so I thought I'd make my way over here," Strider said.
"HOW MUCH A MAN ARE YOU?!" Elfman roared. Strider simply looked bewildered by the question, turning to Mira who let out a sigh as she facepalmed.
"Excuse my younger brother. He's obsessed with being the manliest… man in the room," Mira whispered. Strider chuckled before nodding and turning his gaze back to Elfman.
"Manly, but not as much of a man as you, friend. You must work out quite a bit," Strider said, taking in Elfman's massive frame. The white haired Takeover mage grinned proudly, hands on his hips as he struck a pose. Lisanna sighed as well before looking at her sister. Her attention was unusually focused as she looked at Strider. Taking the newcomers appearance in, Lisanna couldn't deny that he was quite handsome. She compared him to her former crush, Natsu. While Natsu was attractive in a cute sort of way, Strider was much better built - not to mention he seemed far more mature. Noticing her staring at him, the new Fairy flashed Lisanna a charming smile. She blushed before returning it.
"Are you into men, by any chance?" Juvia asked, standing squarely in front of him - a dangerous look on her face.
"Women for me, Miss," Strider said, bewildered.
"Good!" Juvia said before walking over to Gray and gazing longingly at him. Strider raised an eyebrow at Mira, who just giggled before leaning on him and whispering in his ear.
"She loves him, but he doesn't feel the same way. Basically, no competition can exist for his heart. That goes for guys as well as girls," she said.
"That's either really creepy or really adorable. I honestly can't decide which," Strider whispered back. Mira felt a slight shiver go down her spine as she felt his breath on her. Retracting herself to full height, she was blushing a bit - something that didn't go unnoticed by Cana, who smirked. She bit her lip as her eyes fell on the new arrival, finally taking his appearance in.
'Mira and I just had that conversation, and in walks this guy. I'm not sure if someone was listening or what. Hmm… really attractive, that's for sure,' Cana thought as she surreptitiously took a seat at the bar, staring his way. Out of the corner of her eye, Mira noted the same thing.
"Perhaps you all should introduce yourselves as well," Makarov suggested.
"RIGHT! MY NAME IS NATSU! I'M A FIRE-DRAGON SLAYER!" Natsu declaimed.
"Hi! I'm Wendy! I'm a Sky Dragon Slayer!" Wendy said cheerfully. Strider smiled at her as he ruffled her hair to several coos's of delight from the women.
"Gajeel. Iron Dragon Slayer," Gajeel said.
"Really? You three are Dragon Slayers, you say? That's quite interesting. I've never heard of Dragon Slayer magic. How many have you all slain?" he asked with deep interest. Everyone sweat dropped as Natsu, Wendy, and Gajeel deflated.
"Uhh… well. Zero," Natsu said sheepishly.
"Oh? How are you Dragon Slayers, then, if you don't mind my asking?" Strider inquired.
"It's more of a… uh… well, it's more of a name only kind of thing, I guess," Gajeel said lamely. Strider chuckled and nodded, deciding not to press the point any further for the moment.
"I'm Lisanna. Mira's sister. This is my big brother, Elf. We're Takeover mages," Lisanna answered.
"Gray Fullbuster. Ice-Make Wizard," Gray said.
"Juvia. Gray's beloved," Juvia said as she nuzzled him, much to Gray's chagrin.
"Erza Scarlet. Requip Mage. Welcome to Fairy Tail," the scarlet beauty said. Strider smiled and nodded his thanks before his eyes passed over everyone else. They continued their introductions. Finally, his eyes landed on Cana, who smiled at him.
"Cana Alberona. Card Mage," she said, raising her mug. Grabbing his, Strider clinked it before downing it with her, both smiling at each other as they ended. Finally, Mira spoke again.
"Now, he's had a long journey everyone. Save the rest of your questions for tomorrow, alright?" she said. Everyone backed away quickly, which intrigued Strider. It seems that under the beautiful exterior, there was a demon.
"See you tomorrow man!" Gray said, waving at Strider before he got right back to punching Natsu in a far corner of the guild. Neither wished to cross Mira. Slowly, the guild began to empty until only a few were left - Strider, Makarov, Mira, Cana, Lucy, and Erza - each of them quiet and mainly minding their own business, stealing glances here and there.
"Thank you for the food, Mira. Best I've eaten in a while," Strider finally said, smiling at her as he finished up.
"Not a problem. I'm sorry it took so long to get to you. I should've done that from the get-go," Mira sighed.
"Don't worry about it. It was certainly worth the wait," Strider said.
"Do you know where you're staying for the night?" she wondered.
"Lucy, don't you have your own place?" Cana asked the blonde.
"Hmm? Yeah, why?" Lucy said. She turned a bright shade of red as Strider winked at her.
"I'M SORRY I ONLY HAVE ONE BEDROOM NO BOYS SO YOU CAN'T STAY SORRY I'M NOT THAT TYPE OF GIRL!" she squealed loudly. Strider just laughed before turning back to Mira, while Lucy was left blubbering in embarrassment.
'Damn it, Cana! And in front of the new guy!' Lucy thought to herself, shooting a glance at the card mage who just smiled back at her.
"Don't know. Was thinking of getting a room somewhere. Know any good places?" Strider asked.
"Hmm… most of the girls still in Fairy Hills, which is an all girls dorm," Mira said.
"Yeah? Sounds perfect. When can I go there?" Strider asked with a smirk.
"Sorry. Strict no boys policy. You're a bad influence," Mira said with a giggle.
"I'm offended you think so. I'm quite the gentleman," Strider said.
"Mhm, I'm sure. We have a few beds upstairs, though. Come on, I'll show you. You can start taking on jobs tomorrow and move later," Mira said as she took his hand and led him upstairs. He noted how warm and soft her hand was. His mind trailed back in time, his lips slightly parted as he took another look at Mira's flowing silver hair.
'She's… so similar to her,' he thought, before pushing it out. Now wasn't the time.
"Here we are!" Mira said as she led him into the room. She waited until he finally got settled in one of the beds.
"Thank you, Mira," he said, smiling at her.
"Good night. I'll see you tomorrow!" Mira said, before exiting the room. "Sweet dreams," she whispered, closing the door.
He heard what she said and smiled. He laid his head down on the cool pillow and closed his eyes, letting the cozy and warm darkness fall over him; no doubt some fun adventures were awaiting him.
"So Mira…," Cana began as she came down.
"Hmm?" Mira wondered.
"New guy," Cana said with a smirk. Mira sighed and shook her head before beginning her duties. The new arrival was heavy on her mind, although she didn't particularly feel like sharing that with anyone just yet. Cana sighed before looking above, where Strider was now sleeping.
"I'll see you tomorrow," Cana said as she finished her drink and put on a heavy jacket. Grabbing her umbrella, she headed towards Fairy Hills, Erza at her side - still reading.
"Ugh. I really don't want to go out in that weather," Lucy said fretfully.
"You might want to try and catch Cana and Erza, then. Maybe you can stay over there for the night," Mira suggested. Lucy nodded and quickly ran out. Mira giggled at her antics before she stopped and took a seat on the barstool.
'Strider, hmm? Who are you?' she wondered.