Twist of Fate

Chapter Forty-Four: Natsu

"NO!" I screamed.

"WENDY!" Lucy cried as the stake flew out toward the child. I watched in horror, it seemed to be moving toward her chest in slow motion. Wendy's gaze darted from Lucy's to mine—eyes wide with sheer terror. She knew what was about to happen. I struggled against the arms that held me in a vice grip, but these were strong vampire males. Even knowing it was a futile effort, I couldn't just stand there! I couldn't let that little girl get killed, I couldn't—

A blurry figure flashed between Wendy and the stake just as it was about to hit her. The vampire-shield caught the stake, then fell onto his back so hard the impact made a cloud of dust waft up around us, momentarily blinding us from whoever had just saved the little vampire.

Everyone froze for a moment, the only sound was that of my racing heart, which—seeing as it was the only beating heart around—was probably audible to everyone in the vicinity. I held my breath and waited for the dust to clear.

Lucy was the first to break the silence, a gasp of horror and surprise tumbling from her ruby lips. "No… Why now?" Her voice broke. "It's my fault…it's all my fault…"

I didn't know what she meant by that, and it took me a moment to recognize the man that lay flat on his back, skin a grayish pallor. I didn't know much about vampires, but I had a bad feeling that gray was probably not the color of the living dead. More like, dead-dead.

My eyes shifted to Lucy, who looked like she was going to either cry or scream—fists clenched at her sides, body shaking with barely controlled rage, teeth gnashing together to keep any sounds from escaping. I followed her gaze to where a man stood. He looked familiar…


He was one of the commandos Minerva had blinded by literally taking their eyes out. Her idea was that if they didn't have their sight they wouldn't be affected by another Queen's compulsion. She wanted them to rely more heavily on their other senses. However, Lucy was no amateur. She had bested them almost easily. Well, until they came after me.

A small hand gently rested on my arm. I looked down into big, innocent brown eyes. Lucy had taught me that a vampire could be beautiful and merciful and kind, but Wendy…Wendy taught me that vampires could be sweet and innocent and all things good. Race didn't matter if you were a genuine person; race didn't matter if you were nothing but a child—the epitome of innocence.

This guy doesn't see that. He tried to kill her—an innocent child.

Now, I was going to kill him.

I didn't care that he had an entire army with him—however dazed and confused they momentarily seemed—I would get revenge for anyone trying to hurt Wendy, and in the process…

My eyes glanced over at Lucy once more, then down at her dead father.

And in the process, you hurt my lover.

"AHH!" My cry echoed in my own ears, far louder yet more ragged than I thought my voice could reach. I pulled the flames into my palms by force. My hands were hot; the flames danced between my fingertips with ease, friendly fire that soothed my soul and flickered up at me almost playfully…like they'd been inside of me for my entire life.

The army of vampires backed away, but they didn't run like I'd been hoping for. No matter. It was more fun if they stayed.

"You're all going to pay for that," I snarled through gritted teeth, willing the flames to burn hotter and taller. "What kind of sick fuck tries to kill a little girl?"

"What kind of idiot tries to defend a little vampire half-breed against an army of Sabertooth's best?" Asked the one who'd thrown the stake, the leader, perhaps—the head asshat.

"A tasty one?" A new voice offered. I glanced over to see Jellal smirking with his hands folded across his chest. I mirrored his expression.

"Hey, Jelly Bean~!" I waved dramatically so he could see me through all the heads between us. He arched an eyebrow in my direction. About half of the gathered Sabers gave me incredulous looks, the other half were still staring dumbfounded at the newcomers.

"Ha! Ha! Jelly Bean!" Laxus chortled. "That's a good one! Maybe I'll start calling you that, too." Jellal shrugged, seemingly unconcerned at the insult. In fact, neither of them seemed the least bit concerned that they were surrounded. Were they stupid?

"Get 'em!" Someone in the back of the group shouted.

"Guess the party's over," Laxus cracked his knuckles. He looked…excited? His eyes sparkled with hellish joy. Hey, I could get down with that.

"Nah, the party's just getting starting!" I squeezed my hands into fists and felt the fire start to warm them up. I grinned wide when orange flames began to form. "This is for Wendy!" I made a ball between my two fists and threw it at the guy closest to me. He didn't exactly erupt into a bonfire like I'd hoped, but it was enough of a distraction that the others in our group were able to jump in and take action.

Laxus and Jellal moved so fast, they were almost a blur. They started ripping hearts out—literally. I watched their hands disappear into the chests of the enemies coming at them again and again.

We're going to win this.

Well, I focused on Laxass and Jelly Belly decimating the Saber vamps in one instant, then suddenly, I was lying flat on my back and choking in the air that had been forced from my lungs.

Well, fuck.

Someone sneered over me—one of the sightless men. His eyes didn't quite land on mine, but that didn't seem to matter much. His gleaming white fangs could still find my artery in a heartbeat.

Heartbeat! Haha, very funny, Natsu! At least I would die the way I had lived. Totally fucking awesome.

I ignored the irony and instead turned fear into anger. I could see the arrogance written clearly on this guy's face, but he didn't know I had a pile of pain to erase that smug look off his face.

My hands lifted up to his face and I roared. I let my rage, my anger, my fear, my frustration, even my love for Lucy fuel the fire within me. Maybe that was the trick—channel all my white-hot tension into fire and burn everything in sight.

And it worked…for the most part. Fire ignited my palms, burning the vampire whose teeth neared my neck, but like before, it wasn't enough to burn him alive. He gave a roar of surprise and pain, breaking away from me, clutching at his face with both hands so that I was able to scramble to my feet and take up a somewhat defensive stance in front of Wendy.

Like the others from Fairy Tail, Wendy held an expression of determination mixed with a hint of confidence. She thought we would win. She had no doubts about that.

I hope you're right, kid.

I nodded at her expression and moved to the side so she could better see the fighting as it went on. Lucy glanced back at us and winked before turning back and flashing forward straight into the middle of the battle.

"Lucy…" I whispered, my heart dropping inside my chest. If anything happened to her now… I bit off the thought.

"She'll be fine, Natsu." Wendy said serenely, smiling up at me. I nodded and tried to match her determination. If this little girl wasn't afraid than I had to be brave, too. I brought up a fist between us and smirked when a flame appeared almost instantly. I winked. She quirked up a grin.

I threw the ball of flame at the first fucker that dared come near us, hitting him right in the face. This time, the flame had more impact then previous attempts. The vamp's whole head caught fire so fast his graying black hair burned to ash in a matter of seconds.

"You fuck!" he screamed at me as he attempted to pat out the fire. But I wasn't done with him yet. I used the distraction to drive a polished wooden stake right through his heart. He roared as the shock and pain hit him and then his whole body turned gray. His corpse dropped unceremoniously onto the ground. Unfortunately, my triumph was short lived because as soon as I glanced back up three more of those fuckers were coming at me at insane speed. I didn't even have time to react, because I was being shoved backwards as someone stepped in front me just as the three Sabers were about to attack me.

Blue hair was all I could see flashing around me, single-handedly taking on the three assholes—in my defense.

What the actual fuck?

I could do nothing but stare for a moment. That blue-haired freak was defending me? Shouldn't he be trying to keep his Queen safe instead? Maybe I wasn't as insignificant as I thought I was to them?

I caught sight of Wendy to the right of me, trying to fight off two vamps on her own. She looked like she was doing okay, but it was obvious that she couldn't get on the offense. I couldn't let them pick on her; I had to do something.

Leaving Jellal to deal with the other three, I raced toward where Wendy was and lit my fists as hot as I could make them and then slammed a fireball into one of the men's face. He howled but kept advancing on Wendy, ignoring me altogether. Afterall, I was nothing more than an insignificant fly, right? Small damage from a tiny (but still fucking delicious) human.


I slammed my hands together and then pulled them apart with my fingers curved inward to form a ball of fire. I threw the ball at the man and watched him go up in flames in seconds. With a loud battle cry, I went after the other guy who tried to take advantage of Wendy. Together, we had him lying dead in half a minute, stake to the chest.

"Where," she huffed out, "did you get that?" She gestured with her chin toward the stake I held. "And how did you learn how to use it?"

"Oh, uh…" I scratched my head, feeling the pang of discomfort you feel when you know you're about to lie to someone. Fortunately—or perhaps not—I didn't get the chance to explain because we were being attacked once more, this time by four Saber's. These men, unlike the others we'd encountered so far, had their eyes and could move much easier. The others had been fast and deadly, but these guys were something else entirely. The sightless men worked great against Queen's, but not so much against anyone else. These ones, however…

Wendy and I were thrown across the room before we could so much as blink. Since she had vampire reflexes, Wendy was able to catch herself before smacking into the wall, but I had no such luck. I slammed face-first into the stone wall and slid down to hit the floor. Two vamps were on me in seconds, grabbing at me from both sides. I couldn't light my hands on fire; I couldn't pull out my stake; I couldn't fight against them. I was helpless.

"You fucking idiot," a familiar voice snapped at me, yanking me backwards and then shoving me none-too-gently into the ground. I scowled when I saw Laxass's stupid yellow hair whipping around as he easily took down the other two vamps. He turned an incredulous look my way. "Just couldn't stay away, could ya? You got a death wish or somethin'?"

I gritted my teeth together, almost spitting the words out, "I came to save Lucy."

"Well, you're doing a fine job," he replied with dramatic sarcasm.

I clenched my hands into fists, a snarl tearing from my throat at his implied insult. What the fuck did he know? He left me for vamp-bait and was going to just let them kill me. Obviously, he was blaming me for Lucy's kidnapping. Then again, maybe that was fair. It probably was all my fault. It was me that Minerva wanted. Maybe…if I turned myself in, they'd let Lucy and her coven go? This had gone on long enough; it was time I did something to make it stop.

"Don't even think about it, boy."

I gaped and blinked in surprise to see Levy standing beside me like she'd been there the entire time. Her expression was just as scary as when I'd first met her, making me want to cringe away from it. But it wasn't the mini-tornado of a woman that was truly frightening. What really had me sweating bullets was the beast of a man at her side, the man that looked ten-times her size and a hundred times as scary. He was an ugly motherfucker with long black hair and metal studs everywhere. He sneered at me.

"I know what you're thinking," Levy shouted at me, ignoring the chaos that was going on in the background. She had hands on her hips and a disapproving expression. "If you even think about sacrificing yourself for Lucy's sake, I will rip your heart out faster than these morons ever could.. Do you understand?"

I gulped and nodded. Was I seriously being lectured by a five-foot-tall woman who probably wanted to eat me? I couldn't understand why any of the vampires from this coven gave a shit about whether or not I survived. Surely, it wasn't just the fact that their Queen had taken a liking to me? Could it really be that simple? And if so, was it because they truly cared about Lucy's happiness or did it have something to do with their submission to her? Maybe it was a compulsion thing?

"Oh, Gajeel!" Levy chided, watching the bulking man taking down the sightless men with seemingly no effort. "You could at least pretend to have a hard time. You don't want them thinking they don't have a chance."

The oaf looked back with a sadistic smile. "You're right, shrimp. It's no fun if they ain't got no time to be scared before I rip their throats out."

"That's not what I meant!" she shrieked, but he was already back in the fray, grabbing two vamps by the throat and making a dramatic show of letting them dangle a foot off the ground before simultaneously squeezing them both so hard their heads cracked and lolled to the side.

"Fuck," I hissed, trying to choke down the bile that had risen into my throat.

"He's an animal," Levy preened smugly. I had a feeling she was talking about in more ways than just out on the killing field and the visual that brought up made me want to wretch. "Are they dead?" I asked when he threw them unceremoniously to the side.

She snorted. "Hardly. It takes a lot more than a broken neck to kill one of us."

That was the thing about vamps. They never just told you what you wanted to hear.



A voice rang out in the room, causing everyone to pause either in shock or submission. The Sabertooth Queen in all her flaming glory strolled in, her red-ringed irises blazing with anger, one hand clutching a polished wooden stake like the one still in my back pocket. In her other hand, she held a fucking leather whip.

What. The. Actual. Fuck?

I didn't even want to know why Queen of the AssVamps was carrying around that thing. Unfortunately for me, her eyes landed on mine right away, like she had some kind of sixth sense that allowed her to pick me out in a crowd.

Or maybe it was the pink hair. Or my heartbeat. Or my general fucking awesomeness. Hard to pinpoint it, really.

I gritted my teeth to hold back a growl and crouched into a battle stance. I could see it in her eyes—shit was about to go down. Someone was going to die today: Minerva or me—us or them. This was the end.

A blonde head stepped in front of me, blocking my line of sight. I blinked in surprise as Lucy turned her face just enough for me to see her expression. I couldn't quite interpret it, but I could see sadness mixed with determination in it.

"Don't, Natsu," she whispered. "We'll take care of her. Fairy Tail will win this fight."

A/N: Hey guys! I wanted to thank you all for the support and understanding last week. I've been trying really hard to keep up with chapters but I just couldn't do it last week, and you were all so awesome! Thank you for that! I had a thirty-something chapter lead when I started posting, but things have just been crazy lately. I really, truly appreciate all your encouragements. It means a lot! It makes me want to keep writing for you guys; it makes me super excited for you all to see this sequel. I really hope you stick around for that!

ALSO! One of my super good friends, MorriganFae, has a Nalu fic on her channel called "Request Board Romance" that she just started posting three weeks ago. I've been helping her out a bit with editing—so I get advanced chapters—and I have to say, it's really something special. I think you guys will really love it like I do. So if you wouldn't mind, go check her out!

Terra of Life, Hey, if you want bonus stories, I'm sure I can supply ;-)

MnMAllyn, The Exceptionals are 90% Dragon Slayer, 10% random. TYPICALLY, a Dragon Slayer in the canon would be an Exceptional in TOF, but a few others who aren't are as well, it just depends, mostly, on their role in FT canon. If they were a particularly powerful character and/or had some sort of interesting power, I'll utilize that. But for the most part it's particular to Dragon Slayers.