So you know unreliable narrators?
I think I'm just an unreliable author.
I'm pretty good at describing what's going on in the story itself, but fuck if I know what's going on with the whole behind-the-scenes writing process.
Because initially, I just planned on editing and reposting all the chapters I deleted and going on from there. But now, with this single chapter, I introduce two storylines that'll require me to overhaul a significant amount of the story going forward. I'll probably still recycle some of the deleted chapters, probably a few scenes if not a whole chapter, but yeah... We're really back in this now.
Still, big thanks to everyone who's enjoying this story, both new and old. I hope everyone liked the previous chapter, because that one will probably be indicative of how the story is going forward. I am still getting back into it, but at the same time, I'm just not the writer or person I was when I first started writing it. This was among the first stories I ever wrote on here, and while I am certainly super proud of it, there's definitely some stuff I'd change if I were to start over from scratch now. So if you think this story was better back then, or don't like the stuff I'm doing with it now, I get it and it's cool. Thank you for coming this far on the ride with me.
But none of you are here for a long-winded sappy author's note, so I'll wrap this up. Big thanks to chaosphoenix123 for pretty much beta-ing this story and helping me out with it, and big thanks to DragonHunter320 for leaving a comment on the last chapter.
Without further ado, I hope you enjoy.
Tale of Two Loves
"I'm here because Wendy asked me to be her mate."
Silence fell over the table. Everyone figured Chelia would have some reasoning behind her actions, but none of them expected that to be the answer. Jaws gaped and flapped, trying to start a sentence but failing each time. Lucy was the closest to saying something, asking Levy a brief "Can that even-?", with the bookworm only giving a small shrug.
Finally, it was Cana who broke the silence.
"Uh, no, she didn't," the drunk stated bluntly.
"Yeah, she did," Chelia asserted, "It was only a few days ago. She told me that mating season is coming up and that she wanted to get with her 'special someone' when it did, so here I am."
"Uh-huh." Cana nodded. "But at what point did she actually ask you?"
The Sky God Slayer blushed. "Well, she never technically asked directly," she explained, "But I figured it was an implied thing, you know? We are best friends, after all. We used to live together, sing together, and even bathed together." Her face reddened more. "Plus, we still go on jobs with each other at least once a month, and we always make sure to tell each other everything whenever we meet up.
"So really, I don't see how I couldn't be Wendy's mate," Chelia stated, "Who could possibly be closer to her than me?"
"Romeo, apparently," Cana stated.
The pinkette giggled. "Him? Really?" She rolled her eyes before feeling herself get jabbed by the glares from the Card Mage and Fire Dragon Slayer. "D-Don't get me wrong," she backtracked, "he seems like an alright guy and all, but really? I figured Wendy's little crush on him was over by now. She hadn't even mentioned his name to me in like a month."
"The month," Levy started slowly, "Before mating season?"
"Uh-huh," Chelia nodded.
"Hm." Lucy mused. "Er, Chelia… do you think the reason she didn't mention him at all… was that she was trying to hide that Romeo was her mate?"
"Yeah, really doesn't seem like you tell each other everything," Cana chuckled.
Chelia gasped. "Are you trying to say my love is some kind of liar? That she'd keep secrets from even those she trusts most?"
Everyone sharply inhaled.
"Er, Chelia," Lucy spoke, "There's, um… there seems to be some stuff you need to be caught up on…"
"Keh," Cana chortled, taking one of what was surprisingly her first of many swigs of beer that morning, "This'll be good."
One Exposition Later;
The Sky God Slayer slammed her fists down on the table, making the opposite end bounce up slightly. Black swirls formed around her as a dark aura emanated from her body. Sharp, shallow breaths were the only sound she could make anymore.
"H-hey, Chelia, it's okay!" Lucy stuttered, "So… so what if you're not Wendy's mate? That doesn't mean you're not still really close friends!"
Chelia dug her fingernails into the wooden table, cracking it.
"L-Lu-chan's right!" Levy chimed in, "Wendy falling for Romeo doesn't invalidate your preexisting relationship with her. It just means she… you know…" The bookworm started to whisper. "... didn't have any romantic feelings towards you…"
The pinkette seethed. "Graaagghhh!" she screamed, lifting up her fist in preparation to destroy the table beneath her. The twin hammers were brought down with all the force of a raging storm. However, about an inch above the wood, they stopped.
Natsu and Gajeel moved to protect their mates, but that would turn out to be unneeded. The girl felt all of her anger being burnt up by a new emotion. Slumping against the back of her seat, mild sobs escaped her throat.
"Uh, Chelia?" Cana asked.
She didn't respond.
Gajeel groaned. "Oi, Pinky-two."
Chelia sighed. "Why…?"
"Why…? Why does this always happen to me?" she whispered, just barely loud enough for even the Dragon Slayers to hear it, "I've always devoted myself to giving love. Why can I never get any in return?"
"H-hey, Chelia, it's not all bad," Levy consoled, "It's possible you're right about what you said-"
The amaranth-haired girl immediately perked up, throwing herself halfway across the table towards the blue-haired bookworm. "It is?!"
Levy nodded desperately. "Y-yeah." She composed herself. "There are some legends in which female dragons do have multiple mates." She shrugged. "Maybe Wendy just focused on Romeo because he was the one closest to her at the time…?"
Chelia pondered this for a few moments. She indeed wanted to be Wendy's mate, and she was definitely happy that the possibility of that happening was still there, but having to share her? That was something she didn't even consider. Hell, she didn't even think she had competition for Wendy's affections. And the fact that she was already in "second place" for this whole ordeal was offensive to her in its own right.
Still… she could work with this. If Wendy could have multiple mates, there was no reason she couldn't fill that second mate slot, if she didn't already. Moreover, if it was possible for her to get new mates, could it be possible for her to lose interest in older mates? She'd have to do a little research on the topic, but maybe...
As far as Romeo went, yeah, she'd probably feel a little bad for stealing Wendy from him. He'd never done anything personally to her. But he did steal her Wendy's heart before she could, and that was reason enough for her to be furious with him. And you know what they say: "All's fair in love and war."
And this love was a war she was sure she would win.
With newfound confidence, she bolted right up.
"Alright!" She grinned. "I've got a plan!"
And without saying another word, she marched towards the door, planning to head straight (heh) home to prepare. Wendy would still be K. in Fairy Tail's infirmiry until tomorrow, so she had plenty of time to formulate a plan.
"Er, Levs?" Gajeel spoke. "You sure it was a good idea to tell her all that?"
Levy shrugged. "Mmmaaayybeee?" she questioned, "I mean, it'll at least make the story going forward a little more dramatic."
Everyone at the table gave a solemn nod of agreement. Cana kept drinking her beer because it was none of her business.
Akane Resort; Romeo's POV:
'You know, maybe Carla isn't so bad.'
I think, as I clear yet another level of Doom Raider.
The method of getting to this point may have been a bit… unconventional… but fuck if I'm one to question a fully-paid vacation to the best hotel in Fiore. Free arcade, free waterpark, free casino (though I still technically wasn't old enough to participate in that last one; Lily loved it, though.).
Plus, the food here is fantastic. Lily and I decided to get some of the lobster they served here for dinner last night, and my gods. I don't know if I can eat regular food again after that.
The only thing I'm missing here is some friends to enjoy this with. Don't get me wrong, Lily's great and all, but we've never really "hung out" until this point. For the most part, we've basically just been work acquaintances.
(Hell, we're still not hanging out. He pretty much ditched me for the roulette table as soon as he could. Granted, he said he'd use whatever he won to by Shaggotte a gift... but he's also gambling with her [and his] daughter's money... so...)
I'd rather have some of my actual friends here with me. Like Lindsey, or Natsu-nii, or Cana-nee…
… I'd rather have Wendy here with me.
Something about our last encounter was just stuck in my head. Not only because she was half-naked and weirdly sexier-looking than usual, but because it felt like there was something… I dunno, else going on? Everyone said Wendy invited me over to do… that… with her, which I still find to be bullshit.
But I do have to admit that the atmosphere there was weird. Carla was definitely part of the issue there, but something was going on with Wendy, too. She wasn't acting like her usual self at all.
Something's going on with her. I just wish I could talk to her about it…
That's odd. For a second there, I almost thought I saw her in the corner of my eye.
I shake my head. She's sick, I remind myself. No way she's actually here.
But when I look in that direction again, there she is. Just outside the arcade. Talking to some vaguely-familiar looking purple-haired girl around our age.
I get up out of my chair. Making my way through the crowd, I try to get closer to her.
Alright, so Wendy's supposedly got two mates, but now, there's also another Wendy?
Thank you all so much for reading. I hope you enjoyed it. Please be sure to favorite, follow, and review!