Welcome back to the Null Fairy!
Well, I've found time in-between my studies and summer work to bring you this newest addition to the story.
I really appreciate the support I've been given so far, and I'm sorry for the super late update once again. However, summer vacation is coming up, which'll mean I may have lots of time for stuff like this again!
Anyways, let's check the reviews and such, yes? This one is a penultimate start to the last chapter of the Arc!
RedDragonforce 1: Oh, that's a nice suggestion! I mean, going about it… Cana is technically the only person who actually succeeded in finding Mavis' Grave within the six hours' time, despite her knocking out Lucy in the progress. And yes, permission to wield Fairy Glitter is an honorary mention of proof for such a case. And speaking of replacing who on the second team of Fairy Tail, it's really becoming a struggle as to who though honestly. People have given me quite the amount of suggestions and evidence to do so. Cana's involvement was mainly for the sake of only using Fairy Glitter to smash the Magic Power Scale into smithereens, and Juvia was really only useful in the Water Dome Battle. Jellal, while it was nice to see him in action, yes, it's technically illegal for him to be in the team as he's not a member of Fairy Tail. Lisanna replacing Elfman could be a bit interesting as well, but I was really adamant on the Bacchus and Lizardman Elfman fight yo.
And Poison Dragon Slayer elements for Wendy? Oooooh boy… I can already image some kind of sadistic version of her… Or at least an Alter version. Fate Grand order, please save me from Saber and Jeanne Alter.
LoamyCoffee: That's a bit true. However, as of now, because of Meredy and Ultear's departure from Tenrou Island for on-going plot advancement reasons, unfortunately I won't be able to have the two girls mangle with each for Ben's affection, at least not at a similar age that is. Regarding the Dragon transformation, I've been reading up on Fairy Tail: The One Hundred Year Quest Manga, and boy was I surprised by the number of Dragons present. I figured that since they can also revert down to a human form like Acnologia, Ben should be able to do so as well, given though that because of his lack of experience, he still might feature some draconic traits, like horns or a tail.
CT7567Rules: I'm really struggling on the question on who to beat the crap out of Raven Tail. Laxus was there in canon because Ivan wanted to gut out information from him regarding Fairy Heart, but I figured that perhaps even Ben might have some information that Ivan would want, and whether because of the Omnitrix, I'll leave it for everyone else to figure out. Regardless though, I'll eventually make my decision when the time comes. But I had to release Ben though… Rath. Yes. Smash.
Ultimate10: Senpai noticed me… YES!
And there's a bunch more of things that I would like to discuss with you all, but I think I'll save it for the next chapter. After all, that one is going to be the finale of the Tenrou Island Arc. This one will likely include a lot of OG content, so it'll probably be a bit interesting for all of you to read. However, we'll get to that when that happens… So for now, please enjoy this chapter! I own nothing related to the subject of Ben 10 nor Fairy Tail. Please support the official releases, and happy reading to all of you! Thanks for over 1,800 Reviews, over 800 Favorites and Follows, and over 460,000 Views! This is for you guys!
Chapter 54: There Were Devils… (Tenrou Island Arc Part VII)
To say that this was the final battle would be an understatement. With the Master of Grimoire Heart, the same man who singlehandedly defeated Makarov being right in front of the Ben and company, things were definitely about to heat up. Not only with the Dark Guild's interruption with Fairy Tail's S-Class Exams, but with Mest and his infiltration into the scene involving the Magic Council as a third piece of the four sectioned pie. Fairy Tail, Grimoire Heart, the Magic Council, and the infamous Black Mage, Zeref.
As Ben and everyone else arrived at the edge of the deck, naturally, the first to attack was everyone's favorite hot-blooded Fire Dragon Slayer, flaming fist cocked back as he blasted off from the wooden floor of the ship.
"HADES! You wanna see real power?! How about you taste the might of Fairy Tail then!" Though the Fire Mage clearly made his presence known to the Master of Grimoire Heart, Hades simply smirked, shuffling his long beard while remaining still. Unlike his usual antics though, instead of wanting to give a direct smack to his face and go towards him in a reckless and relentless approach, Natsu's fire fist extended out into a stream of flames instead, similarly to how Macao's Purple Flare worked.
Despite the unorthodox method of attack however, Hades remained calm, placing out a palm that spawned a small magic circle. Before the flames could roast him, a spherical barrier was erected around his person, causing Natsu's flame attack to blast off around in separate directions. "Fairy Tail's might, you say? You'll have to present something significantly better than this to me then tha—"
Answering his retort however were Gray and Erza; the duo utilizing Natsu's continuous streak of fire to camouflage themselves as they ran forth. Once again to a slight degree of wonder, Hades did not expect such a coordinated attack, this time with the slight widening of his eyes to show so.
As Natsu's fire finally dissipated, the two Mages had already begun to launch their attacks.
Out from her previous garments, Erza's body flashed into her Black Wing Set, while Gray had begun to construct a monstrously large broadsword. The scarlet haired warrior yelled as she swiped her sword out twice, creating a wave of energy in the form of a cross pattern. "Black Wing: Moon Flash!"
"Ice Make: Cold Excalibur!" Gray was no slouch either, finishing his construct weapon as soon as Erza launched her own barrage of attacks.
Being pummeled by Erza's sword beams, Hades was sent skidding back a few meters, only to be slashed across his chest by Gray's cold blade, summoning forth a large pike of ice underneath the Grimoire Master's feet. The old man was covered head-to-toe in seconds, before being sent careening towards the opposite direction of the duo as Gray detonated the hoarfrost.
Flying towards Lucy next ward, the blonde swiped out a familiar golden key whose teeth bore a resemblance to an axe. She swiped it down, causing a cyan terracotta magic circle to flicker in front of her.
A moment later, the familiar humanoid bull Spirit was summoned forth, cranking his giant labrys above his head. "Open, Gate of the Golden Bull: Taurus!"
Right before the Spirit could smash his weapon down however, it was then that Wendy and Shocksquatch intervened, adding their own effects to this one attack. The hairy alien quickly shot out a blast of electricity from his palms, enticing Taurus' weapon with a yellow glow and causing a thunderbolt to rain down right as the Spirit crushed his weapon onto Hades.
"Wendy!" The alien called out to his partner, who made her movements immediately in response to his words.
"O strengthen of arm to cleave the heavens…! O smiting of armor that protects the heavens…! O swift wind that dashes through the heavens…!" She started to chant, a field of magical wind surrounding her as she swipes her arms out in various poses. Immediately as she completed them, a sky-blue magic circle appeared in front of her as she casted her spells. "Arms! Armor! Vernier!"
Right as she exclaimed those enchantments, Gray and Erza were surrounded by layers of auras, a mixture of three colors verifying the activation of her three different enhancement spells. The scarlet haired Requip Mage and onyx haired Ice Mage made their next moves as they flew at the Dark Guild Master and attempted to slash at him with heightened agility and power. Master Hades, however, saw this coming surprisingly, and dodged a slash from Erza by sidestepping to his left.
Gray added onto the relentless swinging with own his blade, trying to land a blow, but Hades avoided his attack with relative ease as the Ice Mage sliced his Cold Excalibur in a left arc, prompting the old man to leap above its attack range and move in the opposite direction. In midair however, he corrected himself and landed on hid feet. When he lunged at him again, he swung his blade down onto the deck, causing a shockwave of ice to mantle its way towards Hades.
To a surprise, even with Wendy's enhancements, the Grimoire Mage continued to avoid damage by the hair, leaping back out of a dust cloud that Gray created. Knowing that Erza would try to take advantage of this moment, he instinctively ducked, narrowly avoiding the decapitation of his head.
"Well, you kids are certainly annoying…!" The bearded Mage responded by placing a hand out, spawning a magic circle that launched out a long chain. It was decorated as an object made of energy, with white rhombus like figures holding out as the links as a triangular grappling hook made its way towards Erza.
It didn't take long for the end of the hook to latch onto Erza's neck, making her to gawk in discomfort before the Grimoire Master tugged his arm back. As Gray was about to made a move behind him, Hades leaped into the air, making the redhead collide into the Ice Mage. However, it wasn't all that bad. Before they could crash into a part of the deck, Shockquatch leaped over, catching them in his arms as Natsu leaped above Hades.
"Oh?" Hades glanced up, releasing his chain as flames started to engulf Natsu's arms.
"Fire Dragon's Wing Attack!" The Dragon Slayer yelled in response, smacking down a twin helix of flames onto Hades and forcing him up into the air.
Despite another injury being inflicted onto his body, Hades remained calm as ever, twirling midair to launch out another chain while upside down. It clambered itself onto Natsu's neck, with Hades beginning to swing him around like a cowboy.
Shocksquatch and company however saw this coming. Erza quickly Requipped back into her Clear Heart Clothing, unsheathing a long, dark katana. She slashes down on the chain throwing Natsu around, which amused Hades to a degree
"Ben!" Gray yelled, calling out for the shapeshifter. Not needing to answer verbally, Shocksquatch slapped his Omnitrix dial, a flash of green light blinding Wendy and Lucy for a second as Crashhopper took the Gimlinopithecus' place.
Grabbing hold of the Ice Mage, the insect-like alien crouched down a made a jump towards Natsu within a moment's passing. Letting go of Gray midway, this allowed the Ice Mage to slap his hands together and create a gigantic ice mallet. As he went skidding right to where Natsu was, the two didn't even need to communicate as the Fire Mage recovered midair, landing feet first onto the face of Gray's construct. As the onyx haired teen let out a cry of exertion, he swung his mallet outwards, propelling Natsu towards Hades. Crashhopper, Lucy, and Wendy made their next moves in conjunction, with the former once again tapping his Omnitrix dial and transforming into Heatblast, and the blonde swiping out another golden key.
"Open, Gate of the Scorpion: Scorpio!" Summoning the red-and-white haired Spirit, Scorpio quickly took aim and launched out his Sand Buster. "Please, Scorpio!"
"Sky Dragon's Roar!" Wendy howled out as well as she finished gathering a large amount of air in her puffy the petite Dragon Slayer released a blast of wind, Scorpio began to merge their spells together, surprising Hades as it began to form into a Unison Raid.
"Sand-Gusher Theta!" Scorpio yelled with a grin as he synced up perfectly with Wendy's Roar, blasting Hades' back with a powerful twister of sand and wind. On the other side, Erza and Gray watched as the Pyronite in front of them released a monstrous stream of flames from his mouth, propelling Natsu at an even faster rate and even dousing him flames as he began to spin around, adding more momentum to the incoming attack.
"Fire Dragon's Sword Horn!" Smacking dead set into Hades' gut with a skull-breaking headbutt, the Master of Grimoire Heart wailed, though only to cry out in response the next attack from the other end.
Quickly getting out of the way, Natsu, Erza, Gray, and a now reverted Ben all made their way back to Wendy and Lucy as they watched Hades fly all the way to the end of the deck, crashing into a metal wall with a loud smashing sound. The mass of magic attacks ended up creating a massive dust cloud as everyone got together.
"D-Did… Did we get him?" Lucy dared to ask. "Please tell me that we got him…"
"I'm not entirely sure…" Erza admitted herself. "We'll have to wait and see. Be alert."
Waiting for the crumbling parts of the deck to finish falling, everyone waited for their enemy to respond from their ongoing assault. From the wreckage however, Hades shocked everyone as he climbed out of it like nothing ever happened, though if anything, they managed to scorch his cape and tear it to shreds, making him toss it aside as he began to walk out towards the group.
"People say that you learn from your mistakes. That you garner precious experience… However, what if that mistake turned out to be a true one? One that doesn't leave one with any experience whatsoever?" The old man started to go off.
"You've got to be kidding me…" Gray's eyes gawked over. "And after all of that?! We were going all out!"
"Well, you didn't expect this to be easy, did you?" Ben couldn't help but retort, but even he was a bit skeptical to what he was currently seeing. "This is a Guild Master we're talking about."
"But… Still!" Wendy covered her mouth in disbelief. "That should've done something at least…!"
Lucy glared at him in shock. "There's not even a scratch on him!"
Natsu seemed to sense something strange radiating from Hades however, narrowing his eyes. "…His Magic Power. The very nature of it… It's changing—It's getting stronger!"
Smirking at all of their reactions, Hades cracks his neck before continuing. "Now then… I believe we're done with the warm-ups now?"
Right as he said that, Ben and everyone else suddenly started to feel an immerse amount of Magic Power radiating from Hades. The very air was becoming gloomy from the pressure he was exerting. Some of the group started to panic a little, as shown by Wendy and Lucy's eyes contracting a bit. Even Natsu, Gray and Erza were left speechless by Hades.
Ben himself… All he felt was a rising sense of bloodlust coming forth from the Dark Guild Master in front of him. Suddenly, as they all looked forward, he immediately went for the Omnitrix as soon as he started to sense some invisible energy coursing all around Hades' body.
Wendy's eyes widened in fear as she felt something going towards her. An invisible, yet horrendous force that Hades declared was the perpetrator for her death. She could sense it coming at her, though her legs wouldn't move. She could only tremble and stand still as she closed her eyes…
"—Wendy!" Ben cried out as he dived towards her in an attempt to protect her, ignoring the alien device on his arm entirely.
The force traveled at Wendy, and was right about to strike her in the face. As she shut her eyes to await her fate, suddenly, instead of feeling knocked out, killed, or even outright annihilated as she expected, nothing happened. She opened her eyes upon hearing a pop of light consuming both her and Ben. Gazing around, she sees that instead of being on the ground, she was laying inside a confided space, as if she had been swallowed up by another entity... Alongside with someone else unexpectedly.
To everyone else's surprise… Both her and Ben's clothing had stayed where they once stood, leaving only the garments they wore as they fluttered down to the ground of the deck in front of Natsu and company.
"…What? BEN! WENDY!" Natsu screamed out. "What the hell did you do to them?!"
Hades seemed to be surprised by Ben's bold attempt at saving Wendy, but cocked a brow in amusement nevertheless. "Hmm… Completely annihilated without a single trace of their bodies remaining? That's quite pitiful… Maybe I should just erase you all one at a time to let you join your friends."
"W-Wendy…" Lucy's eyes twitched in horror.
"Ben too…" Gray could only growl in anger. "What the hell have you done?!"
Natsu could only stare at their garments in disbelief. "No… You've got to be kidding me…"
"Indeed. Calm down, everyone. Quit panicking—"
"A-As if I could calm down like this! Kyaaaaaa…!"
"H-Hey! I'm not touching anything on purpose!"
The sound of a familiar grandfather clock Spirit brightened everyone's faces as they all looked towards the ceiling of the ship. Everyone, even Hades, gazed up to see the Spirit in question hanging off from the ceiling.
""We are safe… Kya…", is what she says with slight embarrassment for her predicament." Horologium uttered out Wendy's words.
"H-Horologium!" Lucy's jaw dropped in awe. "Are Ben and Wendy within you?!"
"Oh, thank goodness…" Gray sighed in relief, sweating a few marbles down his forehead. Natsu sighed heavily as well.
"My Automatic Danger Response Mode had been activated." The Spirit revealed, which immediately made Lucy's expression do a 180.
"Wait… What? Y-You know… I kind of remember myself being in danger a couple of times…" Lucy retorted, recalling all the times she was in danger and Horologium didn't help. She sweat dropped in response to Horologium's apparent sense of danger.
Horologium seemed to be empathetic, though responded nonetheless. His body began to shake a little as well, probably because of the occupants within him. "The level of danger was exponentially higher than anything else previously confirmed. I am very sorry for that."
""T-Thanks for the save, Horologium… T-Though…", is what he says, also with slight embarrassment to his predicament." The Spirit echoed Ben's words, which only proved to pull a nerve on Erza's forehead.
"Just as annoying roundabout as always, huh?" Gray smirked, but it was then that the pile of clothes began to bring up a question in his, as well as everyone else's thoughts.
"But… Speaking of which… Why are their clothes the only things that are left here for?" Natsu was the one to point out the fact.
Erza looked like she was going to go full bloody murder based on what Horologium answered.
"It was an emergency, so only the people themselves were protected." The Spirit answered, which made Gray's face go a bit rosy as he awkwardly looked towards the center of the Spirit's body. "I had to ignore everything else unfortunately."
Erza looked like she was about to explode in rage and murder a cat.
"W-W-W-Wait a freakin' second then…! THAT MEANS…?! Wendy, Ben?! In there, you guys are—"
""—Utter one more word, and no Healing Magic in the world will be able to fix what I do to you!", is what he says in a threatening, yet still embarrassed matter." Horologium conveys Ben's sudden threat, which immediately shuts Gray up.
""Kyaaaaaaaaaaaa! I didn't think I'd show someone my birthday suit so soon!", she squeaks out in deep embarrassment, but also seemingly in slight amounts of…happiness? How peculiar." Horologium notifies everyone about the situation as well.
"BENJAMIN! YOU BETTER NOT BE STARING AT HER!" Erza growled loudly. "I will personally discipline you if that is the case!"
""T-The first thing I did was cover my eyes when I saw her being with me! I huddled around her to keep her from harm's way! I-I swear!", he yells in fear, yet also in high amounts of embarrassment as he struggles to keep his arms from touching any inappropriate places." The Spirit conveyed the Omnitrix wielder's concerns as his body began to shake again.
However, it was then that a flash of light was seen from within Horologium, the shaking stopping immediately afterwards. "Now then, please, change into these."
After calming down, Erza smiles. "Anyways… I applaud you for your efforts, Horologium. I give you our thanks."
"Yes… But I was only able to protect you this one time." The Spirit then revealed. "Everyone, please be careful, for I cannot summon myself again."
"Ah… Thank you so much, Horologium!" His contractor smiles in gratitude. "I appreciate it!"
Lucy then saw a light flashing from her key rack, Horologium's specifically as it began to fade out. Right as the silvery light of the Spirit's key vanished completely, Horologium himself puffed out of existence within a purple cloud, revealing both Wendy and Ben, now garnered in new clothes.
Seemingly by coincidence, the two were in matching outfits once again. They both wore a black, suit-like top with sky blue trimmings, with large cuffs of the same color. Underneath that, they each wore a dress shirt with a sky-blue tie. Wendy wore a small, cerulean blue skirt with a large pale-yellow sash holding the top and skirt together along with black thigh-highs, while Ben wore a pair of black designer pants along with a sash of similar design. Promptly landing in front Natsu and the gang, Ben immediately frowns at his and Wendy's clothes being paired up once again. However, that was quickly replaced by a dark glare, with both him and Wendy directing their intentions towards the enemy in front of them.
Hades took all of this into account, giving an answer in the form of a cocked, but amused, brow. "So… These are Makarov's kids, eh? This might be a bit fun after all…"
Natsu heard his words, and wondered if they had a deeper meaning to them. "Oi. You know Gramps?"
"Oh? What, he didn't tell you about me?" Hades responded with an amused look again. "I shouldn't be surprised though. I suppose that as of now there aren't any records of me from within the guild's library."
"You… What are you getting at?" Erza glared at Hades, earning a smile from the old man as he began to stroke his beard.
"…I was once the second Master of Fairy Tail." He casually revealed. "I took on the name of Precht Gaebolg—"
"—YOU LIAR!" Natsu instantly spat out in disgust. Naturally he was be in denial, as was everyone else. Ben however, cocked a brow, going for the Omnitrix to look for answers through Mavis. The First Master of Fairy Tail appeared as a hologram, revealed to be simply shrugging while giving him a childish wink face.
"…Yep! That's Precht alright. In fact, he's one of Fairy Tail's founding members! It's strange though… I wonder why's he so active in his old age?" The blonde figure wondered. "And what turned him into such a malevolent being…?"
The Omnitrix wielder merely sweat dropped, going back to listen to Hades' words. 'Whelp… Lot of help that was…'
"I was also the person who chose Makarov to be Fairy Tail's third Guild Master." He then exposed to everyone present. "Shall I reveal to you another index of information?"
And once again, Natsu blatantly denied all of his words. "Oh, bull crap! As if we'd believe something like that! You better stop spewing that stuff, or else!"
Blasting forth, Ben and everyone else watched as Hades took hold of his palm. Aiming his hand at Natsu with a literal finger gun motion, a small purple magic circle flickered as waves of glyphs fired off towards the Dragon Slayer.
"Natsu!" Lucy yelled out in worry as a dust cloud was created from the explosion of Hades' spell. It was then however that Hades swiped his arm and lugged out a wave of Magic Power, exploding across the rest of the group. While in the midst of recovering, Hades then took advantage of their shocked reactions to launch out two chains from a magic circle, locking together Lucy and Erza and tying them up together before throwing them into Gray.
"Tsk, he's playing with us…" Ben growled as he activated the Omnitrix. "Wendy, stay close!"
"R-Right!" The Dragon Slayer yelped as he slapped down on the core.
Whilst in the middle of intervening Natsu once again, Hades noticed the flash of light from afar as he began to fire off magic bullets at Natsu, pelting his body with Magic Power as he fired off his attacks via his finger gun motions.
As the flash from the transformation died off however, Ben was replaced with Chromastone, the latter flying towards Hades as Wendy started to join up with him. "Hey, Hades! Get a load of this!"
With Natsu falling to his knees, Hades was just about to blast off his face, but was quickly interrupted as Chromastone jumped in front of him, absorbing the volley of whirling blasts. As soon as Hades ceased his attack, an eyebrow was lifted when he saw that a certain Sky Dragon Slayer peeked out from behind the crystal alien with puffed cheeks.
"Sky Dragon's Roar!" Releasing another hurricane-like blast, Hades was knocked back once again off his feet, but instead of like before, he quickly recovered as he twirled mid-air before landing on his feet a few dozen meters away.
"Hmph… So, these are the forms that Ultear were so interested in. What kind of Take-Over is this?" Hades wondered out loud as he prepared to fire off his Bullet Magic again.
The master of Grimoire Heart began his next attack as he discharged two huge, purple bolts at the Crystalsapien. Wendy was about to warn him to move until she saw what he was going to do. Chromastone took a stance and clenched his fists, letting the blast of magic hit him a second later. To Hades' and the petite girl's surprise, he was completely unharmed as he absorbed the power from the attack.
"Ugh… That was dense. Thanks for the juice though, old man!" Chromastone did frown a little upon processing this dark magic as his body started to glow with colors of the rainbow. He then extended both of his arms and fired off a huge beam of rainbow colors at Hades. The second Master of Fairy Tail was still in shock and was unable to react, being blasted against his abdomen and him careening back into a pile of fallen roof rubble. As he was buried, Chromastone turned back to Wendy, who was looking at him for an answer to what this form was.
"I can absorb and redirect energy, including Magic Power. I'll soak up his attacks while you attack from afar, alright?" He quickly explained. "Coordinate with me."
"Y-Yes!" She quickly nodded as she began to concentrate her Magic Power. "As you will!"
When Hades arose from the rubble a moment later, he sighed a little before snorting in amusement. "Such unique transformations… I'll admit, I've never seen anything like it before… However…"
"However, what?!" Chromastone growled as he held his arms out. His body lit up brightly as he fired a few more ultraviolet beams at Hades. However, he managed to elude the attacks, distracting the Crystalsapien with the smokescreen created from his own beams as they blinded him and Wendy. As Hades leaped out into the air, he launched out several chains from a magic circle.
Chromastone's eye widened, but he quickly took a stance to catch the chains. However though, instead of attaching themselves onto his body, they shot out and went through him, latching onto Wendy and the rest of the gang before they realized it. After quickly chaining them all together, Hades jerked his arms back, with Chromastone only managing to glance back before getting slammed by everyone else.
"Huh?" The Crystalsapien could only yelp in response as he began to fly towards Hades with everyone behind him.
With barely enough time to even look back towards the Chain Magic user, Hades himself had already began to prepare his next spell. Swiping his hand in a semi infinity-circle pattern, three magic seals were created in the shape of circles; one in front of another, and in front of the user.
"Amateratsu: Formula 28!" The area in front of him was then engulfed in a massive cylindrical shockwave as a humungous magic circle with runes activated, piercing out of the ship's ceiling as the pillar of darkness began to give agonizing pain to the ones inside it.
With the sudden slamming to his back and even quicker attack to his entirety, Chromastone couldn't react in time to absorb the spell's energy, wailing in pain with everyone else even to the point that he was forced to revert back to his human form by the time the attack ended. As the pillar of darkness faded away, the captured fairies were all incapacitated. Natsu and Gray were down and laying on their stomachs, while Lucy and Wendy were on their sides, twitching in pain as they struggled to breathe. Even Erza was seen staggering about, using her sword for support as she struggled to stay up.
Ben himself was on his knees, panting heavily as he writhed in agony. With everyone down for the count, Hades smirked with satisfaction as he overlooked the Omnitrix wielder.
"…You revealed too many weaknesses while in that form, brat." He noted. "And that's the problem with you all…"
"Y-You… Why you…!" Ben glared at Hades, his eyes shadowed by his bangs as he clenched his teeth.
Hades chuckles at the brunet's reaction, lifting his leg to kick him off his knees and onto his back. He stands in front of him as he folds his arms.
"Do fairies really have tails…? Do they even exist...? That question is the start off for an eternal mystery... A never-ending journey." Hades recalled the famous saying of Fairy Tail. "However… That journey will end soon."
"…Over my dead body." Ben snarled. Hades smirks at the brunet's continued defiance as he stomps his foot onto his face.
"It was Mavis' will that was entrusted to me…" He went on, leaning more of his weight onto Ben. "And it was my will that was passed onto Makarov. However, that was a mistake…"
Ben growled lowly as he attempted to push the Dark Mage's boot off from his face. "What the hell do you mean…?!"
"Makarov changed the guild completely… And for the worst." Hades answered him.
Natsu leered over, his body twitching as he tried to get up. "…A-And what's wrong… With change?!"
"He exposed the guild to too much of the light… The guild is nothing how it was like before." Shooting him with a blast of Bullet Magic, Natsu's body was rocked back into the air, before landing again with a thud a few meters back.
"What do you care…?! You left the guild; you're not its Master anymore! This is our Fairy Tail now! Makarov's and everyone else's, not yours!" Ben argued, spitting out his words as he began to push back. "We're not living fossils like you… We put all of our efforts into living as best as we can. Everyday, for every moment in our lives! If you can't accept change, then maybe you just kick the bucket for good and let us lead the future to a new path!"
While Hades was impressed that Ben finally got onto his knees as was now pushing back with his hands, the Grimoire Master looked down at the brunet with a tinge of disgust, aiming at his face with his Bullet Magic posture as he kicked him away again. "Though your mouth and words are strong, they are nothing if you can't back them up. You should pipe it down a notch, you little devil."
The Omnitrix wielder winces as Hades proceeds to target his leg with a dose of Bullet Magic, letting out a momentary grunt as the rest of his guildmates pondered over with their own injured bodies.
"B-Ben!" Gray grunted out as Hades began to pellet Ben's body with continued shots.
"S-Stop it!" Wendy cried out.
As he continued to fire off, Hades gave a stern look to everyone else. "If you want someone to blame, it should be Makarov. It will be his fault that you will all die by my sufferance."
"You bastard! STOP!" Erza yelled with rage, struggling to stand up.
"He's not going to last much longer…!" Lucy wailed out in pain.
By then, after Hades' brutal gunning down on Ben, the Omnitrix wielder's body was full of scratches, bruises, drippings of blood running down his forehead as Hades prepared for one final shot.
"You… You won't get away with this. We'll turn the tables, and you'll see…" Ben panted heavily as Omnitrix's red coloration flickered into a green glow. Knowing that he was in a life-threatening situation once again, the device went into Active Mode immediately, bypassing the standard recharge time.
"Enough. Begone…" Hades simply said as his final shot began to surge into a plethora of bright purple light.
As Hades is about to kill Ben however, Ben responded with a gnarly and dark grin. It was faint… But suddenly, from behind everyone else, small sounds of a device beeping filled everyone ears, the beeps going faster and becoming louder, until—
"You didn't think I had a backup for this plan, did you?!" Ben gave the old man a snarky response as a thunderbolt flashed down between the two fighters, shocking the entire ship…and Hade's arm.
Everyone's eyes widened like dinner plates as the thundering energy amalgamated into a humanoid figure, appearing in front of Hades as the Dark Mage began to take a few steps back. By then, the beeping of Ben's device, which was still inside his clothes when he and Wendy were wisped into Horologium, turned flatline. With his face glanced up, the brunet began to go on chuckling away for a little as a familiar Lightning Mage appeared before everyone else. He stared at Hades, eyeing his figure.
"So… This is the guy who hurt the old man, Tennyson?" Laxus uttered with hostility in his voice.
He revealed a small beacon in the palm of his hand, revealed to be the small stamp that Ben latched onto him when he left during the Fantasia parade. Contrary to his regularly flashy appearance, Laxus was shown wearing simple traveling clothes, consisting of a large, hooded light cloak, a dark shirt under a long light jacket closed by a simple belt, loose dark pants ending below his knees, and boots reminiscent of his old greaves. He also had a small belt visible on his upper chest, crossing it horizontally.
"…Laxus!" Natsu smiled.
Hades took a look at the Lightning Mage. His blonde hair, his facial expressions… It was just like a younger version of…
"Boi…!" His eyes widened as he compared the man in front of to a person from his past, only for Laxus to give the old man a thundering headbutt, smacking his temple into Hades' own forehead.
"It's… It's really him…!" Gray could only stare in disbelief.
Lucy had tears dropping from her face, smiling in agreement. "He came… He really came for us!"
Wendy was surprised to say the least. Prior to her joining of Fairy Tail, she had only heard rumors and stories surrounding the infamous Lightning Mage. "This person… He is the grandson of Master Makarov?"
Erza, out of everyone though, was the most astonished by the reappearance of the former S-Class Mage. She could only gaze in silence at the back of the man who was considered to be one of the most powerful wizards in all of Fairy Tail. As Laxus withdrew his figure to stand straight, Hades regained his balance, glaring at the blond Mage with a stupefied look. "You brat… So, you're related to Makarov, are you?"
Laxus ignored the question, giving a snarky snort in response to the battered looks of the people behind him. "That's rich… You guys look like he just wiped the floor with you all."
Ben rolled his eyes, before grinning as he began to sit up. "No kidding… When did you discover about that thing I planted onto you?"
"Geh… You know, learning that you basically planted a beacon on me freaked me out at first, you brat." Laxus admitted, giving him a snarky snort. "If you were going to do such a thing, just tell me from the get-go. I was going to come here anyways."
"What…? Why is that for?" Erza asked.
"I came to pay my respects to my ancestors. I wanted to see and visit the First Master's grave. Tennyson's beacon happened to guide me along the way from where I was travelling…" He responded to the Titania of Fairy Tail. "I used to be a member of Fairy Tail, if you even remember, Erza."
His sarcastic, yet joking sense of humor brought a smile to her face as Laxus gazed back towards Hades. "I originally came to just see Mavis' grave, but I didn't expect the second Master to be present as well. Since you're here and all… How about I make a grave for you too?"
With Laxus' body radiating bolts of electricity, Hades cocked a brow in amusement as his own Magic Power began to gleam out. "Hmph… Honestly now. To think that the boy would end up having such a stuck-up grandson. Fine then, amuse me."
With that, the battle between the two began. Laxus immediately transformed his body into a lightning bolt, staggering around the ship for a moment. Hades was caught off guard by the sporadic movements of the Lightning Mage as Laxus reformed and bolted at him from his left, kicking him in the face. As he was seen staggering back, Laxus quickly surged lightning into his left fist, giving the old man an electrifying left hook. The momentum he gave off ended up sending him off his feet and even careening back towards the other side of the ship. Within milliseconds, Laxus took off into the air again as a lightning bolt, following forth on his assault. He took hold of the back of Hades' head, slamming into straight into the deck before the old man could land.
Unexpectedly though, Hades recovered, leaping away to dodge a lightning fist to where his head would've been. He was slightly enthralled by the power and speed of the blond Mage.
"Hmph… You move fairly well, for a brat at least." He admitted. "And that Magic Power of yours as well... To think that Makarov had someone with this kind of strength other than Gildarts."
Laxus gave him a snort in response. "You know, it's funny… The old man once told me that when facing a strong opponent, "It doesn't matter how strong the guy is. What's more important is standing up to him…". Ain't that right, Natsu?"
Natsu couldn't stop his face from grinning throughout this entire time. "Laxus…!"
"Foolishness. That sounds like the excuse of a weakling to me." Hades countered. "You've had your chance to warm up, yes? Come at me then, youngster!"
Cracking his knuckles, Laxus gave the Grimoire Master a look of interest. "Hmph… Now this'll be fun."
Rushing forward, Laxus cocked his arm back and released another right hook in Hades' direction, forcing the Dark Mage to block. With his sheer strength though, Hades was sent up into the air towards the railings of the ship.
"Through brute force, huh?" The old man commentated. "Interesting!"
Back on the floor, as he began to breathe in, a magic circle flickered in front of Laxus' mouth as he released a concentrated blast of lightning. "Lightning Dragon's Roar!"
Though Hades managed to dodge the beam, Laxus began to turn his head; his employed spell had started to move in an arched trajectory, following Hades for a short bit until he canceled it out. Whilst in the air, Hades summoned another magic circle, launching out a chain towards Laxus' figure. With his reflexes, the blond Mage was able to dart his head out from the grappling hook's hold, though it was then that he discovered that he wasn't the true target for the spell. Glancing behind himself, Hades in fact attached his hook onto a gigantic globe in the back of the ship, removing it from its pedestal and wrangling it around like a yo-yo.
The sheer mass and force of the globe turned wrecking ball rolled around the ship, forcing Laxus to jump out of the wave as it carved off a trench in the ground. Everyone's eyes widened as Hades released his hold on it, allowing the enormous sphere to begin bouncing towards their direction.
"Ah, crapbaskets…!" Lucy cursed.
Right before it could smash them into flat pancakes however, Ben quickly activated the Omnitrix and slammed the core down in his injured state. Within moments, he was replaced with Blitzwolfer as the light died off, and he quickly released a sonic howl that blew away everyone in the wrecking globe's line of rolling, saving their lives.
However, that was all he could do for the time being, as his previous injuries had already gotten to him. Within seconds again the alien werewolf staggered to his knees as the Omnitrix began to flash red, engulfing him in a ruby light that replaced him with Ben a few moments later.
"Ugh… I still have to watch out for the collateral damage, huh?" He made a snarky riposte as he and the others gazed back at Laxus' and Hades' fight.
Laxus jumped forth once again, the latter's fist engulfed with electricity. The Guild Master of Grimoire was prepared for this however as he extended one of his palms out and delivered a blast of Magic Power. The Lightning Dragon Slayer went flying back, landing on his feet after being sent back a few meters. While he was distracted though, Hades quickly swiped his fingers in various directions, conjuring up a magic circle right underneath Laxus that forced him to a knee.
The blond's eyes widened up recognizing circles of runes surrounding him. "This Magic… This is an Amaterasu formula?!"
"Yes! Now, scatter and be washed away!" Hades roared as he activated the formation.
"Crapbaskets!" The blond managed to curse, before being engulfed in a massive sphere of darkness. Swiping his fingers again, the orb of Magic Power then exploded, causing an enormous amount of energy to blast out in every direction. Shockwaves of wind sent everyone nearby off of their feet, with Lucy hanging onto a nearby staircase and rails, Natsu, Gray and Erza struggling to put up a resistance, and Wendy supporting Ben as the latter flew away like a ragdoll.
After the massive amount of smoke filled the area between the Fairies, Laxus and Hades, the Amateratsu spell faded off, leaving a giant hole in the deck between them.
"Those who are hit by this Amateratsu formation lose all of the strength in their limbs, making it impossible for them to move at all." Hades explained the nature of the spell he casted. "Even if you defend against it, know that your Magic Power will be drained dry—"
"—Shut your trap, you damn fossil!" A raging roar answered his words however as a lightning bolt flung out from the center of the explosion.
Hade's eyes widened immensely as his eyes follow the bolt, only for Laxus to reemerge from behind and deliver an axe kick to the back of his head. The old Mage wailed in pain as he fell forward, with Laxus landing a fair distance away as Hades landed on his stomach. Everyone was surprised to see that Laxus had escaped the range of the spell with seemingly no injuries.
"Whoa, holy crap!" Gray blinked in shock.
'Was Laxus always this strong...?' Erza's mouth was dropped open, staring at the electrifying figure that was Laxus.
The Lightning Dragon Slayer stood up, staring down at Hades with your typical Dragon Slayer characteristics. His shadowed face gleamed over as he his body began to spark up once again. "That amount of strength was only from a single leg… I've got another one, as well as both of my arms. My head, my knees, my shoulders… My entire body! If I attack with all of them at once, we're not simply talking about the damage simply being two or three times as worse… So then, you still wanna try me?"
Hades spat out in response, countering all that Laxus dared to say. "Hmph… An admirable speech. Is this the confidence of the youth of the new generation? The trait of having youth however is not the only needed standard to walk down the path of Magic."
"You've got that right…" Laxus growled as he and Hades engulfed their arms in Magic Power. They lunged at each other, their fists clashing together to spark their power throughout the ship. "It's nonsense!"
The clashing of their Magic Power forced both Mages to be blown away with a humungous flash of light blinding everyone. As it dissipated, there was a dent in a wall, with Hades lying in the center for a moment before leaping off onto the deck. He rubbed his chin, looking forward to see Laxus jumping down to ground level, his body still covered in electricity.
However, despite all of the things he said, everyone's eyes widened as the Lightning Mage dropped to a knee, his sparking aura of Magic Power fading away as he started to pant a bit.
"Oh? What's the matter?" Hades smirked. "It's a little too soon for you to be bending knee to me after all of the boasting you just presented at first."
"LAXUS!" Natsu yelled out in anxiety.
"Wait, don't tell me…" Erza frowned. "Did he actually get hit by that spell at first?"
It seemed to be true. Taking a closer look, Laxus' clothes were a little battered up, proving that he was indeed affected by the Amaterasu spell that Hades performed. Laxus seemed to be satisfied that he was injured however through his panting.
"Heh… The world is pretty vast." He chuckled. "To think that there would be monsters like this… I've got a long way to go."
"What?! Alright, what the hell kind of nonsense are you saying?!" Natsu roared in a childish matter. "Keep fighting!"
"Get your shit together, Laxus!" Gray barked. "Come on, get up!"
Hades' Magic Power began to radiate again, as if nothing that everyone had done to him didn't even happen. He gave Laxus another stern glare as the Lightning Mage continued to stand down.
"I'll admit, you've done well so far, Laxus fellow. However, this will end now... You, along with everyone else here, will disappear!" He declared.
The Grimoire Mage proceeded to extend his hand, with all of his fingers slightly bent in the direction of his intended target as he begins to gather Magic Power in a spherical form.
"Laxus! You have to dodge that!" Erza yelled out in concern.
"Explosion Bullet!" Hades then released a cry, firing off a large beam-like bullet as the Magic Power he accumulated formed into a magic circle.
Laxus remained motionless however, letting the beam freely traveling towards him despite the redhead's warning. He slammed a fist onto the ground, smirking all the while to himself.
"Heh… But I'm not even a member of Fairy Tail anymore." He whispered. Memories of said place started to flood his mind however. First were some moments during his childhood, where Makarov would join with him to gaze and celebrate during the Fantasia Parades.
"LAXUS!" Gray growled out. "MOVE!"
"What are you doing?! You've gotta get out of the way!" Lucy cried out.
"If you get hit by that, you're done for, Laxus-san!" Wendy screamed out. "Please, dodge!"
"Laxus…!" Ben struggled to say, but he also yelled forth at Laxus as well. "What are you doing…?!"
With everyone yelling out in concern for his wellbeing, the blond continued to go through his memories. An iconic one was the moment in which he discovered that Makarov had dismissed his father, Ivan, from the guild for attempting to use forbidden information that could harm the guild. This only seemed to anger the blond, as all of these memories portrayed their relation to his dearest grandfather.
It was then that another memory flashed, going forth to the last Fantasia Parade, the very one that he almost wrecked and prevented. The fact that everyone in the guild had forgiven him for his malicious intentions, and that they even used his iconic hand gesture to send him off with good wills only served to tighten its hold in his mind. He knew that his grandfather, despite not wanting to kick him from the guild, had to do so to maintain the safety of Magnolia Town and its people.
"So… It's okay for me to get pissed…" He uttered, just loud enough for everyone behind to hear. "Even when I'm no longer a member of the guild, I can still get mad for his sake…"
"WHAT?! HELL YEAH, IT IS!" Natsu roared out.
Hearing the words from Natsu's mouth, Laxus smiles unexpectedly. As the beam nears his figure, everyone looks over to see the Lightning Dragon Slayer's spark out, streaks of golden colored electricity reigning around his body.
All of a sudden then, Natsu noticed that the Lightning Mage had fired off all of that released Magic Power in his direction, a bright flash of light consuming his body right as the Explosion Bullet landed directly onto Laxus. The bullet created such a large explosion upon contact, it was powerful enough to lift the entirety of the large airship of Grimoire Heart off the ground for a brief moment.
Everyone was sent speeding back in a violent storm of energy. Lucy was literally rolling backwards, while Wendy clenched and hugged onto Ben's body as the two flew away together. Gray and Erza were seen tumbling backwards, blocking their eyes from the blinding light of both the explosion and the radiance of Laxus' Magic Power. After a moment, when the dust settled, Laxus was seen flinging out from the smoke, landing inside the hole in the ship that Hades created from his Amaterasu formation spell. His clothes and entire body were ragged up as he landed with a thud, grinning all the while as he landed.
"Take it in, Natsu… My love, my anger, and all of my sorrow…"
The Fire Dragon Slayer was filled to the brim with Laxus' Magic Power, which came as a surprise to everyone else. As sparks of electricity started to leer off of Natsu's body, the pink haired Mage slowly stood up.
"…Did he just?" Lucy blinked.
"Natsu-san…?" Wendy narrowed her eyes in wonder.
Ben smirked as his body leaned against Wendy's. "Heh… It's happening. I'll be damned…"
Natsu's body flourished with the Lightning Dragon Slayer Magic that Laxus poured into him, panting heavily as he actually began to absorb and process the energy. "…Thanks for the meal."
"…His body has become electrified?" Hades took note of what Laxus had done as well, wondering why the blond Mage did what he just did.
Laxus smirks at Hades' confusion. "…That's all of my Magic Power."
"Wait… What?" Gray sat up. "Hey, what did he just say?"
"He gave every ounce of his Magic Power to Natsu?" Erza repeated, being surprised however. "Wait, then that means… He…"
"He ate lightning?" Lucy noted, though with a worried expression. "The last time he tried that, I heard he got sick!"
"He took that spell without any Magic Power to support his body…" Gray concluded. "That's crazy…!"
"Is that how much he wanted to give Natsu-san his energy?" Wendy frowned. "But… Why?"
"Yeah… Why, Laxus? Why, to me? I'm… I'm weaker than you, aren't I?" Natsu asked in between pants as he continued to convert Laxus' Magic Power into his own.
The blond Mage snorted. "It's not about bein' weak or strong, ya dolt… Who was it that got hurt?"
"H-Huh?" Lucy cocked a brow.
"…Who were the people who took damage and got involved with all of this? If those people were members of Fairy Tail, then it's gotta be one of them that has to take in the pain given by Grimoire Heart, and then dish it back out… A hundred-fold!" The Lightning Mage muttered.
Hearing his words, Natsu wipes away a few tears that form in his eyes. Clenching his fists, he gives him a clear answer as he stares at Hades. Wendy's eyes widened, noticing this particular phenomenon occurring right in front of her eyes. Ben seemed to already know what was going down, activating the Omnitrix. As he slapped down on the core, everyone shut their eyes as torrents of flames were sent out in Natsu's direction, covering him fire.
"B-Ben?" The petite Dragon Slayer opened her eyes to see a kneeling Heatblast grunting for a few seconds, only for his body to light up and exert a humungous amount of flames.
The Pyronite's bodily flames spewed out towards Natsu's direction, with the Fire Dragon Slayer absorbing every last drop of his natural element into his body.
"This is a spectacle to behold..." He started, immediately reverting back to Ben and falling onto Wendy's lap. "A fusion of flames and lightning… A Lightning Fire Dragon Slayer!"
"It's the same as when he ate the Etherion…" Erza compared the two cases. "Only now, with this much of a single element surging through his body…"
"Go, Natsu! Kick his ass…!" Laxus then gave out one final phrase, before finally losing consciousness.
In response, Natsu reared back his own arm as he released an ear-screeching battle cry. For a second, nothing happened until the flames and lightning energy shrouding Natsu increased. Remarkably, the Lightning Fire Dragon Slayer dashed forth at such a speed that Hades couldn't even react, punching him straight in the face with a lightning and flame enhanced fist.
Hade's eyes went wide in shock as he went sent speeding back into the wall of the ship's deck, denting it immensely as he bounced off from it. Natsu didn't give him a chance to recover though, plowing forth and leaping into the air. He quickly contorted his body and did a flip midair, landing an upside-down bicycle kick on Hades' head. While the Grimoire Mage was initially covered in flames, Hades shrugged it off, only to get shocked by a surge of lightning right afterwards.
"Right after hitting him with flames, lightning came right afterwards!" Gray was astounded. "What the heck?"
"That's so cool!" Lucy grinned.
Natsu however wasn't happy, not at all. After slugging at Hades again, the Lightning Fire Dragon threw him onto the ground, before lighting his fist in fire and lightning once again. Slamming his elemental enhanced fist into Hades' face with a right hook, the old man's body sunk into the flooring, cracking the wooden panels and the metal working underneath. "Lightning Fire Dragon's... Iron Fist!"
"You've tarnished our guild! You've hurt our members—" Lighting his other arm, he gave off an extremely powerful uppercut, sending Hades back and making him crash onto a stair case on the other side of the deck.
"—You should just disappear!" The Lightning Fire Mage roared loudly as he brought his arms Lightning Magic in his right arm, as Natsu began to garner Fire Magic into his left, Hades gasped upon seeing essences of black flames mixing together with them.
'That's—' Hades recognized the flames as belonging to Zancrow, his Fire God Slayer.
"Lightning Fire Dragon God's Brilliant Flame!" Bringing his arms together, the black and red flames combined themselves with the lightning in Natsu's other arm, contorting into a gigantic sphere of black and red fire, with lightning surround it as it began to grow in size as he threw it down.
Within the massive explosion, everyone covered their eyes. After a moment, when the dust settled, Hades was seen leaping from the smoke, looking relatively unharmed but surely annoyed with his clothes charred up. He quickly spun around and summoned two magic circles, one each on his right and left hands. Once he accumulated enough energy, he cried out as he discharged two powerful white chains. The ship shook even more from Natsu massively dangerous spells, causing more damage throughout the structure and more debris to collapse. As the pink haired Mage landed, Hades chuckled as he successfully chained together his wrists and tied them together.
"Ha! What will you do when you can't use your hands?!" He bellowed.
Natsu frowns at the chains, and much to everyone's, especially Hades' shock, the Lightning Fire Mage growled loudly as he simply began to pull his arms out, literally snapping his magic chains apart from one another.
"WHAT?!" Hades gawked, astonished at the sight in front of him. "How?!"
Right as he snapped the chains apart, Natsu's body hanged lowly as he clenched his fists, inhaling deeply as fire and lightning began to conform in front of him. Wendy and a few of the others gulped in fear, with the former bringing her and Ben's heads down as an orange magic circle flickered in front of Natsu's mouth.
"LIGHTNING FIRE DRAGON'S… ROOOOOAAAAAAR!"
Generating an extremely large and destructive sparking beam of fire and lightning, the spell collided against Hades and pierced out the entire ship. It was so powerful in fact that it continued traveling for a great distance, wreaking havoc wherever it passed and even crossing the entire distance of Tenrou Island. Once again, the level of magic presented blew away everyone nearby, though it mostly affected the ship if anything. After exerting the might of his attack, Natsu released the spell, leaving his body almost completely strained. Gray and Wendy could only gawk over with shocked expressions, while Lucy, Ben, and Erza smiled in joy.
Despite the huge strain now on Natsu's body and his heavy amounts of panting, as the dust cleared away, Hades was seen laying near the edge of the hole that the Roar created. There wasn't any movement coming from his body, which left the spell caster grinning as he began to stumble. He chuckled weakly, falling to his knees. "Heh… We… Did it…!"
'With such an overwhelming amount of Magic Power, he literally just consumed it just as quickly…' Erza smirked. "Well done, Natsu."
"It's finally over now, right?" Gray dared to ask.
"Y-Yes!" Wendy's eyes gleamed. Ben would've smiled, but… Something didn't feel right.
"No… I'm not completely sure." He then said, slowly standing up and activating the Omnitrix. "Keep an eye out, everyone."
"What? Come on, nothing could survive after th—"
However, right as Gray said that, Hades' closed eye flickered open. "…Sheesh. Such impressive youths."
"H-Huh?" Lucy and everyone else looked over to see the seemingly-beaten down Master of Grimoire beginning to stand up. "What the hell…?!"
"Makarov, you unruly bastard… You've raised quite the fearsome number of whippersnappers." He admitted. "How many decades has it been since someone has beaten me like this?"
As he stood up, everyone watched as a dark magic circle appeared under his feet. It was Requip Magic of all things—with the Master of Grimoire Heart changing his current attire into a new one. This outfit was highly reminiscent of the first, but had subtle differences. His shirt, gauntlets and cape remained the same, but his pants were now tucked inside a pair of dark greaves reaching up to his thighs and their belt held up a wide, dark waist-guard.
"What?! Oh, come on!" Gray cried out. "I was freaking joking!"
As Hades revealed his new outfit, he sighed heavily as he took note of all the destruction around himself. "…This will be a trivial matter, cleaning all of this up. However, I have to reward you all for presenting me with such an enjoyable time."
"That attack didn't do a thing to you?!" Erza frowned, though she was equally as devastated as everyone else. As he stood up in his armored outfit, Hades gives off a stern look on his face as he begins to go for the eyepatch that covered his right eye. Swishing it off in one fell swoop, the formerly closed optic organ began to glow darkly.
"Devil's Eye… Release!"
Right as he uncovered the eyelid that sheathed the now revealed demonic looking red eye, when Hades activated this Eye Magic, it made his hair, beard, mustache and eyebrows jut out, and a vast amount of Magic Power was released around his person. Lucy, Natsu, Wendy, Erza, Gray… Even Ben was fearful to a degree as the abomination in front of them literally came back to full power as if nothing had happened.
"Heh… For your efforts, I'll show you something special." The Master of Grimoire Heart uttered out. "The abyss of Magic… A realm of reality that surpasses even your feeble imaginations."
"For crying out loud… I can't believe this is happening...!" Gray fell to his knees. "How can we win against this?"
"…It's not fair. It's not fair…!" Wendy began to tear up, gritting her teeth with a sense of disparity. Even Ben, who only recently had his latent Ethernano circuits released, could only shiver in response to this sense of malice spreading out through the entire room. The very presence of Hades' Magic Power made Jose's Shade Magic feel like a child on a temper tantrum.
"His Magic Power… It's like it hasn't even been reduced at all." Erza could also sense the powerful energy radiating from Hades.
"N-No… It's not just that… It's growing, even more so than before!" Lucy cried out in horror. "W-What is he?"
"It's over, Fairy Tail! This is the end!" Hades roared with an absolute tone. "You will fall, here and now!"
As much as Natsu wanted to, he couldn't get up to his feet. Grunting as he tried to get off from his knees, Ben could only look at his fellow guildmates as none of them had the power to do so. The Omnitrix wielder groaned inwardly, wondering what he should to alleviate this fatal problem in front of everyone. What alien could he use? Rather, could he even use an alien in the long run? He probably could, but for how long? Should he try to transform into something that had regenerative abilities, like Goop or Swampfire? No, that would take too long. Hades would probably wipe the floor with him by then and cause even more damage.
Four Arms? Humongousaur? No, brute force wasn't going to do squat in a situation like this. What about an aerial fighter? Stinkfly? Big Chill? Jetray? No, Hades would bring him down with his Chain and Bullet Magic, and he would easily be able to counteract Big Chill's intangibility in a short amount of time. Feedback or Chromastone wouldn't work either, as the Dark Guild Master already fought them before and knew of their conductive and absorbate abilities.
'Shit… Well, what to do now?' Ben grumbled to himself as Hades' Magic Power continued to flourish. 'Should I go and use that form? At this rate, I may have no choice but to actually do so…'
"…So, what do you guys think this is?" Happy wondered.
The Exceeds, now in a lower region of Grimoire Heart's Airship, were staring at a bizarre object. Happy was the first to question off against this as Carla and Lily joined up with him. The white Exceed folded her arms while giving this apparition in front of them a cautious look. "It's… Crude, to say the least."
"Grimoire Heart…" Lily cupped his chin, before coming to a realization. "Wait… A devil's heart!"
"Are you saying that—"
"Hey, I hear voices from inside!" However, interrupting them was a rowdy voice behind them. A giant metal door was the one thing blocking the trio of Exceeds from the probable amount of Grimoire Heart members on the other side.
One such voice shrieked in shock. "What?! No way! How did they get inside the room?"
"Crapbaskets!" Happy squeaked.
Carla growled, turning over to the doorway in a worrisome matter. "Shoot! We've been found! What do we do?"
"Leave it to me!" Lily suddenly declared, running in front of the duo. "I'll hold the enemy forces for a bit. In the meantime, you two go and stop that thing!"
"What do you mean by that?!" Happy couldn't help but retort towards the distant figure of his fellow Exceed, but could only sigh in response before he and Carla turned around to stare back at the bizarrely placed object in front of them
"Never mind that! Come on!" Carla barked.
While the two began to dwell in on that, Lily pressed open a switch that opened the large metallic door, which then closed immediately as he came out. Once he was out of the room, his vision was filled by dozens upon dozens of Grimoire Heart members that took to arms. As they looked down towards the former Commander of Edolas' top squadrons, their gazes lessened to that of a mocking gesture.
"…A cat? What's with this tiny thing?" One member protested in a joking matter. "Is this what's been giving the higher ups so much trouble?"
"Doesn't matter! I'll stomp his face flat if he knows what's good for him!" Another responded.
In response to their threats, the black Exceed took out something from his back. It was a…doorknob of all things. Spinning and throwing around like a boomerang however, the doorknob slapped its metallic body across the faces of the Grimoire Heart members in front of Lily. As it wiped out the first row of troops, it miraculously came back into his paw. Quickly grasping onto it once it came back, Lily swung it out to deflect a slash from a cutlass wielding member, who gasped as his attack was bounced back.
"You little bastard! Now you've done it!" He growled. "I'm gonna cut that tail of yours off and—What the hell?!"
The threat of the former was quickly withdrawn however as a magic circle flickered under Lily's body, causing his seemingly small stature to grow and revert back to his normal, muscular self. Cocking his arm back, Lily let out a war cry as he smashed his fist into the opposing member's masked face, sending him sky high into the air and careening back into a few members. Straightening his body out, the black Exceed breathes in slowly as he takes a battle stance.
"Now then… I'm going to get revenge for all the mishaps that I couldn't prevent. Have at you!" He announced.
A fearful member croaked. "H-Huh? Why did he just grow all of a sudden?"
"Don't back down, it's just one guy!" One member barked in response, charging in with a rather large curved blade with a crimson red and white appearance.
The bladed Grimoire Heart member growled with an effort to slice his blade down on Lily as he reared his arms back. Swinging it down, he had hoped to cause some damage… Unfortunately, however, the efforts of Lily's opponent went to waste as the muscular Exceed simply caught the blade's fuller in the palm of his hand. While the enemy was laughing manically at first, his boisterous noise soon turned to a heartfelt gasp as his sword got tugged out from his hands in an instant. As soon as he took hold of it, Lily jumped back and gripped the blade's handle with his own. To his surprise, the weight and material of the weapon he stole was remarkably sturdy, enough to make him whistle in awe.
"Ah… This is an excellent weapon." He smiles, before gripping it tightly. "I'll be borrowing this if you don't mind!"
The member from which he stole it from began to stumble around, jittering in nervousness from the fact that he just got his weapon taken right from his hand. "H-Hey! That's my…sword. Aww… Crapbaskets—"
The heartbroken Mage widened his eyes in horror as Lily began to rear back his stolen blade to its zenith. Swiping the massive sword in an enormous arc, Lily cleared out an entire row of enemies with a single swing as they all were blasted back. The black furred Exceed slashed left and right and then vertical, forcing the continuous rows of enemies to back off one by one. Though it was a bit difficult with using only his bare fists, using a blade made the job significantly easier. As he continued to do so, it was then that Lily began to feel an energy emitting from the sword he stole. Glancing down at his weapon, he blinked in surprise once he saw that the sword was coated in an aura of green Magic Power.
Suddenly, the sword grew in size, which made Lily gawk in shock. However, it was soon replaced by a gleeful grin as he stared at the enlarged blade.
"Oooh…! A Magic Sword with the ability to change in size? It's just like my Bustermarm." He remarked. "That settles it! I'm making this my weapon!"
"Oh, come on! That's an extremely expensive weapon, that Música Sword you took!" The member from which he stole from whined. "I just finished paying the monthly due for it!"
While he was busy admiring the unique ability of the weapon, Lily accidentally let a few members pass my him. Turning his face to the sight of the squadron of Grimoire Heart members coming to the break through his defenses, his mind approved of a thought he had. Compared to the attacks on Tenrou Island and the events that transpired there, they were adamantly prone to fulfilling this mission in particular. In Lily's mind, it only proved to solidify the fact that the "heart" present behind him in the room with Carla and Happy held the upmost importance to Grimoire Heart as a whole.
Snickering just like Gajeel once he got into a combative mindset, Lily converted his attention from the Música Sword to the waves of enemies in front and behind him, grinning wickedly at his adversaries as he performed. "Ha! I'll test out the durability of you and this weapon of mine!"
Gripping the handle of the Música Sword tightly, its wielder began to spin around, motioning forward and backwards with each counter-clockwise rotation that he made, bringing a deadly whirling blade into the group of enemies around Lily, hitting them up to three times while launching them off from their feet and smashing them into the narrow walls of the hallway. In fact, the blows from the Exceed were so powerful that some of the soldiers that were sent flying flew into the very door that he was trying to protect, causing the metallic barrier between them and the two Exceeds inside to crumble down… Or should I say, tumble down. The literal door was sent smacking back into the room with Happy and Carla, following up with a blast of wind from Lily's attack that sent said cats off their feet and into the end of the room.
"What the hell?! What are you doing, Lily?!" Carla growled. "We can't do anything like this if you're making us scrounge like flies!"
"I don't like pain…" Happy groaned sadly, rubbing a newly grown lump on his head.
The two watched as Lily begun another round of defense against the ever so growing members of Grimoire Heart. Once he cocked back his arm, the Música Sword began to glow even brighter than before, further increasing in size. He held out his arms and lifted the massively drawn blade into the air, before slamming it straight down into the floor to blast forth a shockwave of energy, taking out a large amount of Grimoire Heart members in front of him. After discharging his weapon out from the ground, Lily began to cry loudly as he flew forward and smashed the ground again, which created a cloud of dust that blocked Happy and Carla's vision.
However, it was then that the white furred Exceed heard something crack. Turning around, right above where the door smashed into room, her eyes widened as wide as the moon as she saw a golden opportunity for her and everyone else. As she recovered from the previous blast of wind that knocked her aside, she picked Happy up from the ground and gave him a look of authority. "Come on, Happy! We have to use this chance! Everyone's counting on us!"
Back with Ben and company, the presence of Master Hades had frightened the likes of them from his sheer amount of Magic Power. Even Ben was a bit startled to see purplish-black energy coursing all around his body, but this time it looked far more intense. His dark, sickening eyes were honed in on them as his Devil's Eye glowed ominously. The situation couldn't be any worst; most, if not all of the members of Fairy Tail, were drained dry of their Magic Power. It didn't help that Ben himself was severely hurt, and that his transformations from the Omnitrix were linked to his bodily condition.
As Hades continued to stand in front of them in a menacing matter, the entire ship began to shake violently. Pieces of the ceiling broke off and fell to the floor, however, it wasn't a concern to any of the individuals currently residing on the deck of the ship.
"So, what's it going to be…?" Hades smirked at the Mages of Fairy Tail, knowing that they were quivering in fear due to the sheer amount of energy he was releasing. He could even see tears forming up in Wendy's eyes as she tugged harshly on Ben's arm for support. "Will you go down quietly, or do I need to rid myself of you all personally?
"G-Gah… I can't move like this…" Natsu coughed hoarsely, reacting violently to the instant drainage of his Magic Power. Sure, that Roar he released was probably the most devastating thing he could ever unleash, but man did it take an absurd amount of Magic Power to even dish it out. He was in cold sweat at this point and down on his knees. As Lucy tended to him, she could feel his muscles twitching in agony. "T-This ain't over though…!"
"You see, that's what you get for treading on the path of Magic." Hades responds valiantly, bringing forth an arm to demonstrate a rush of power to those in front of him. "The further down you tread, the deeper one sinks towards the depths of darkness. Through enlightenment through the never-ending darkness, once one reaches far enough down that pit, one will witness the ever-glistening form of the origin of Magic; The One Magic… The Essence of Magic—the Primordial Magic—the Magic of One! All is going according to plan… Once I rid myself of all of you, I shall reach that Utopia. Just a little bit further to my revelation…"
"Yeah… but that "little bit" is going to end up being the bane of your existence…" Ben mutter, still presenting a rebellious front. "We haven't lost… Not yet."
Snickering in response, Hades answered back. "Hmph… Then I shall fill that void to attain my goals. The Ultimate Magic World will thrive—A world with Zeref! His waking will change history as we know it, and I'll finally be able to attain the One…"
"The… One?" Erza repeated with confusion. Lucy reacted similarly, but she seemed to had heard those words he uttered before. She wasn't sure where or when she heard them, but she did have a recollection… It seemed to had been recalled from her late mother, Layla, of all people.
Ben began to struggle to get up as Hades started to make a few postures, no doubt in preparation for beginning a spell. "Tsk… This is going to get ugly."
"W-What're we going to do?" Wendy whimpered. "Can we even beat him? I'm scared, Ben…"
"Beat me? Foolish child. You, and everyone else here cannot go to the Ultimate Magic World." Hades growled, moving his hands and arms in a slow, circular motion. "You all lack the conviction and will to dive deep into the depths of Magic!"
Gray groaned as he stood up. "…Hey, what kind of spell is he trying to do?"
"Hmph! I shall tell you its name then!" Hades replied, his body radiating a massive amount of Magic Power as his motion came to a close. "From the Book of Zeref… Chapter 4, Section 12… Living Magic: Nemesis!"
Following up with the completion of his motion and chanting, suddenly, from around the ship and around the area of his person, bits of rock and dust and other wreckage began to vibrate uncontrollably as dark energy began to materialize from their insignificant forms. Oozing out like a dark miasma, creatures of darkness began to emerge from the rubble. They took on various shapes—humanoid, beast, monstrous, but they all had the same glowing energy that consisted of their bodies, along with vibrant lines of red shining as they took on their true forms.
Lining up alongside Hades, everyone on the opposing side could only watch in horror as the army of monsters beckoned to Hades' summoning. They all roared hysterically, nearly piercing the ears of the Fairy Tail members.
"M-Monsters made from rubble?!" Gray gawked in terror.
"…Nuts." Ben cursed. He could feel Wendy trembling as she hung onto his arm. She looked like she was about to wet herself to be honest, which only served to make the Omnitrix wielder more adamant on the decision he had to make in the next half a minute or so. "So, rock monsters, huh? Heh, reminds me of Charmcaster's."
"These creations are leagues above whoever's you mentioned." Hades retorted with a smug look. "With the Magic Power garnered from the deepest depths, you can even create devils from lumps of earth! You can make them do your bidding as the judger of heavenly might—That is the force of Living Magic! Tell me, do you know of anything else that can do such a thing? I think not!"
Erza shook her head and grasped onto the right side of her face, noting that she was shaking in fear. 'For crying out loud… It's one after another with these. Every spell that he releases is a bundle of magical despair in physical form! How can we face such a force?'
'Come on… Move! Move, damn it!' Gray yelled inwardly, trying to fight the fear locked in the depths of his being. As much as he wanted to go and fight the abominations in front of him, his body was too scared to do so. Amongst everyone currently present, only Ben and Natsu seemed to be the ones still willing to put up a front in the presence of Hades, as much as they could at least. As the beasts of Nemesis began to crawl their way towards the group, the majority of them stood still in fear. A lack of Magic Power, covered in injuries, and no hope for support… There seemed to be no courage left in any of them…
Except for some of them, that is.
"…Hey." Natsu muttered out in between pants. "We're cornered, yeah?"
"Yeah…?" Ben responded, eyes glancing at him for a split second. "What're on about?"
"We have nothing to fear then. We know our weaknesses." The Dragon Slayer began to say, which made Lucy blink a few times in confusion, as well as everyone else turn to him in question. "And once you know your weakness, you will gain the ability to become stronger, as well as kinder."
"…An encouraging speech, right in front of impending doom, huh?" Ben began to chuckle a bit, standing up with Natsu. "You got something on your mind? This is probably our one shot at doing so."
"Heck if we die here, it ain't happening." Natsu grinned as he stood up as well. "If we're weak at the moment, then we just need to overcome our obstacle with a new level of strength. If we continue to fight, then surely it'll happen, eh? Maybe we're scared when we're alone, and that's understandable—But we're here, together! All of friends, our source of power, right here and now in the present!"
Ben couldn't help but smirk unironically at his cheesy tone, but nevertheless, he could see that Natsu's words were beginning to bring a sense of uplifting to everyone else. Standing up beside the two of them, Ben activated the Omnitrix as Natsu lead the group. "We've got nothing to fear if we're together. We can do anything by working with each other!"
"A praiseworthy amount of vanity, but that all comes to an end. Right here and now." Hades beckoned. "You'll meet your end here at my feet!"
'As long as you're with your friends.' Erza uttered as she began to stand.
'We have nothing to fear.' Gray added on, grunting with effort as he stumbled up.
'Even without any Magic Power at our side…' Wendy panted heavily, but with a new look of determination as she and Ben helped each other up.
'We won't give up to the bitter end…!' Lucy stood as well, a defiant look on herself. 'That's what it means to be a Mage of Fairy Tail!'
Ben could see the looks of his fellow guildmates. It made him swell up with valor, granting him the sanity to decide on his next course of action. Even with their determination, it was going to be a chore to get past the creatures of Nemesis and go on towards Hades himself. They would need something or someone to clear a path for them, because more likely than not, if they were to go head on, they would surely meet their demise. The brunet didn't know at this point what to do specifically, but he figured that he would just have to find out on his own do something on the fly like he usually. After all… This was sensation he hadn't felt in a long time.
'…It's eat, or beaten.' He muttered lowly, licking his lips. "Everyone, are you ready?"
"It's do or die." Erza simply replied. "We're prepared."
"…Then this'll be the final fight! I'll clear a path for everyone, so you better not stop until one of you gives Hades' a good whack to the face!" Ben roared loudly, slapping down on the Omnitrix.
As the flash of the device consumed him, everyone closed their eyes for a moment, only to recognize a familiar alien in front of them. Suddenly, the ground started to tremble, making the Nemesis monsters come to a stop. A bright, emerald light filled the room, forcing Hades to shield his eyes with his forearms. As it died off, Wendy gazed at the form in awe, revealed to be none other than Atomix. Before she could properly react, Atomix's body began to shine brightly as he spread his arms apart. Suddenly, two orbs of nuclear energy began to exert themselves from the gauntlets on his forearms, conforming into his hands as they were lit up.
As soon as he finished charging up, he quickly flew up into the air before leaping down in an arc towards the creatures on Nemesis, slamming his fists into the ground and unleashing a shockwave of explosive energy. "Nuclear Shatter!"
With his special move unleashed, the wave of energy traversed through the flooring, consuming the rows of Living Magic creatures in destruction filled shockwaves and heaps of dust clouds. The ship trembled greatly from Atomix's impact, and after a short moment, the tremor ceased and the emerald light disappeared—revealing a straight linear path towards Hades that was free of Nemesis creatures.
"Go forth, members of Fairy Tail!" Atomix beckoned, before kneeling down in exhaustion. "Seize the moment of glory!"
"LET'S GO!" Natsu yelled, leading the charge as he and the others ran past Atomix.
In response to the group, Hades directed the remainder of his forces, not willing to shown any sign of faltering in front of the teenagers. "Ha! What can you do with no Magic Power left? Charge, my demons!"
Motivated by Natsu's declaration that they are all together and by Atomix's bold assault, the team charges forward as Hades sends the remaining Nemesis demons ahead. The first wave of demons attack the group by release beams of energy from their mouths and limbs, however, even then they trial through the hell zone and traverse on, dodging narrowly by the brink of death as the distance between them and Hades draws near. With countless explosions and dupes happening all around them, as Gray and Erza blast forth, Natsu begins to fall behind. However, right before he could fall off to the ground, Lucy and Wendy grab him by his wrists and throw him forward, leaving them to bite the dust as the demons focus on the trio of Mages left.
The two in question hear the approaching of the Dragon Slayer as they glance back. As he flies in front of them, the two arc their feet to act as platforms, supporting him with their legs as he gives off a stagnant launch while releasing a hell-bent roar of determination. Seeing the ending coming to an abrupt approach, Hades says it is time for the sun to sink and causes a major explosion on the ship, probably the biggest one so far in terms of the battle condensed so far.
As the ear-shattering explosion begins to diminish off, the vibrant amount of smoke and dust finally begins to settle after a minute or so later. As the remainder of the debris clears off and reveals the entirety of the deck, the Omnitrix dial on Atomix begins to go from an emerald green color to a dull ruby red as he approaches Lucy and Wendy, reverting back to Ben as the members of Fairy Tail look up to see the aftermath between Natsu and Master Hade's grand collision. The first they see unexpectedly is that Natsu's face is dead set on Hade's cheek, given enough force to send the old man tumbling off his feet and sent spiraling back into the air.
However, it was then that Lucy and everyone else noticed that Natsu's scarf had begun to fold off from his neck, floating off into the distance. Before it can go off the deck of the ship, Lucy dives out in a desperate attempt to seize it, however, she nearly falls off the edge in doing so.
"W-Woah! I-I'm gonna fall—"
"L-Lucy-san!" Wendy squirms forth, grabbing the back of her waist in an attempt to drag her back, but even then, her small stature made it a little hard to do so. "Hnrrgh…!"
Ben however, suddenly reached and grabbed Wendy from behind in a full-nelson, hunching her and Lucy back in one fell swoop. "Oh, for crying out—I am not going to make the death of you be by falling off a ship of all things!"
Tumbling back onto the ship's deck, Lucy nearly did the splits as Wendy fell onto Ben and accidently elbowed him in the rip, causing both the brunet and blonde to groan uncomfortably. As they recover from doing so, over by the end of the ship, Hades began to recover from Natsu's killer slugger punch, staring at him in shock. "What?! Impossible! The Living Magic had no affect on you? It didn't work?!"
That only served to be music in Natsu's ears, who began to gesture towards him with a hungry glare on his face. Hades thinks to himself, wondering why this phenomenon was happening to begin with.
"No, that's… Unfathomable. The only reason my Magic wouldn't work is because…" Suddenly, a wave of exhaustion overlooked itself onto Hades, making him grasp his Devil's Eye in increasing discomfort. After a few mere moments, the red glowing eye he had previously was reverted back to its original form, causing him to gasp. 'N-No… They couldn't have—'
"DROP DEAD!" Before he could fully comprehend the situation, Hade's face was met once again by Natsu's fist, who gave him an uppercut to the chin hard enough to knock him off his feet.
'My… Heart!' Hades could feel anomalies growing all over his body. He no longer had the invincible frame and longevity he had earlier, now leaving him the typical body of an old man he naturally had. Without his supreme amount of Magic however, the Nemesis demons began to crumble away, collapsing down to heaps of dust and dirt, eventually blowing off from existence as their remains were carried off by the wind. 'If that's destroyed… My Magic Power is going to…!'
As Hades continues to lament through the realization, Natsu pummels his body with a flurry of punches and kicks. As that happens, Wendy begins to feel a sensation in the air. Turning over back towards the island, her eyes begin to widen in reaction to a miracle. "H-Huh…?"
"What's… Uuuuuup—Oh my word…" Ben was about to question his mate, only to become speechless at the sight she was looking at as well.
"What's the matter, Ben? Wendy?" Lucy asks, before turning around to see what their eyes were glued onto. "What the…"
"H-Hey… My eyes aren't playing tricks on me, are they?" Gray looks over as well. "Is this really happening?"
"…The Great Tenrou Tree." Wendy mumbled out, shocked beyond belief. "It's returning to normal…"
"H-How though?" Ben wondered, eyeing the humongous landmark as the entirety of it was beginning to grow back to its normal size. Mavis appears out from the Omnitrix, standing next to him with a small smile on her face.
"…It seems like someone's had a change of heart." She replies, impressed at the feat as the glow of the tree begins to return to its rightful glory. "This is the work of the Time of Arc user. They are returning the Tenrou Tree back to a previous state."
As soon as the glow from the Great Tenrou Tree begins to fade away, all of a sudden, the emblems on each of Fairy Tail's members begins to shine with a radiant light, surprising everyone.
"H-Huh?" Lucy looked down on her right hand.
"O-Our marks… They're shining!" Wendy gestured at her own mark, which shone through her clothes.
"I can feel… A power coursing through me." Ben remarked, glancing at himself. "It's… Magic Power! Our strength is replenishing!"
"Then that means we've got another chance to finish this for GOOD!" Natsu roars, getting ready to unleash another flurry of attacks on Hades as soon as the light fades off. The Dark Guild Master looks defiantly at the Dragon Slayer rushing at him, scowling at him as he drew closer to his person. "WE'RE WINNING THIS!"
'Even I… Am going to lose to Makarov?' He uttered with uncertainty, before glaring at Natsu at with all his might and countering him with a left hook. "NO!"
"Listen up, boy!" Hades growled, blasting him away with a pulse of Magic Power. As Natsu recovers from the initial blow, Hades gives him another shock by roundhouse kicking him in the face, followed by his own flurry of attacks. "For those who have walked and treaded down the path of Magic, the Devil shall never sleep—"
"—SHUT YOUR ASS UP!" However, right as Hades was gallantly about to unleash another blow on Natsu, Laxus suddenly appeared in his face and socks him with a lariat, knocking him off balance.
"L-Laxus?!" The pink haired Mage stuttered. "What're—"
"—GO! FAIRY TAIL!"
Hearing the determined voice of the blond Mage, everyone's ears perk up as they redirect all of their attention to Hades. They all begin to muster whatever strength they had just replenished, garnering this last opportunity as the ultimatum to this situation. To start things off, Ben swiftly activated the Omnitrix and slapped down the dial. His body was instantly consumed again in a dome of brilliant emerald light, and a moment later, standing in his place was Atomix once again, only this time, his body was supercharged with all the energy he had obtained from the Great Tenrou Tree, causing his body to shine greatly.
As soon as his transformation was complete, he began to traverse alongside everyone else, lining up with them as they drew closer to Hades. Erza instructs the group as they near their target, her eyes dead set on the man who just downed Laxus. "This will be the final attack! Give it everything you've got!"
"Every last drop! Make it count!" Gray ordered.
"Come at me then, you brats!" Hades threatened, releasing a wave of Magic Power in their direction. "You'll face my full wrath for all of this!"
Before they could get blown away, Atomix quickly zooms in front of everyone and deploys a barrier, blocking the incoming attack while hiding behind the created field of smoke. While Hades' vision was obscured, the group began to make their move, starting with Lucy. Skidding away from the explosion, she dwells a Golden Zodiac key in her hand, holding it out in front of herself.
"I apologize for not creating a contract with you yet, however…" She beckons, before swiping the key out and summoning a magic circle. "Open, Gate of the Goat: Capricorn!"
And within a glow of light, said Celestial Spirit appeared by his Master's side, now donning a more formal twin-tail butler suit which covered his arms and legs. He bows lightly in sight of Lucy, smiling in reaction to his summoning. "As you wish, Lucy-sama."
"Please!" Lucy beckons.
"Of course!" Complying to her command, Capricorn blasts forth with incredible speed, shocking Hades as the Spirit sudden appears in front of him.
"You… You're…!" Hades could've sworn he recognized Capricorn, but was met with an elbow to the face. "GAH!"
"I am neither Zoldy nor Caprico!" The Spirit yells clearly, unleashing a roundhouse kick towards Hades' face and a knee to his stomach. "I am Lucy-sama's Spirit, Capricorn! It's over Hades, we come for you!"
"And don't think I'm finished with you yet, mister!" Wendy suddenly barks from behind Hades, appearing with the help of Atomix. "Let me show you what I've learned!"
"Get him, dearest other!" Atomix yells gallantly, propelling her towards Hades with a well-focused throw.
"Sky Dragon's Wing Attack!" Swiping her arms down like whips, Wendy generated a large whirlwind from each of her arms, which twisted and rotated to whack at the Dark Guild Master from behind. The old man was totally unprepared for such a maneuver, and was sent careening forward to the point that he was rolling and tumbling down the deck of the ship.
Alongside Wendy's attack, as Hades struggled to stabilize the sudden increase in moment, Gray leaped up into the air above him, grasping his hands together. A short moment passed, and a large ice blue magic circle spawned out, fabricating two humungous scimitars made of ice to slash down at him with an intersecting cross-shaped clash. "Ice Make: Ice Bringer!"
"Ben!" Erza called out to Atomix. The nuclear alien quickly responded as he began to fly from the opposite direction that Erza was approaching the now downed Hades with. "With me!"
With a flash of light, Erza's body was encased in an aura of yellow as she Requipped into her Heaven's Wheel armor. Summoning forth two blades, she flew into Hades direction, slashing with a flurry of strikes that formed into the shape of a pentagram. "Heaven's Wheel: Pentagram Sword!"
The moment she finished, Atomix finished up, garnering an intense amount of energy into his palms. Within moments, he then released a massive blast of energy towards Hades' direction, causing an incredible explosion to occur in front of the duo as Atomix reverted back to Ben. Through as much horrific pain that Hades was going through, as the explosion's effects died off after a bit, Hades stared at Ben with wide eyes and clenched teeth, a few drops of sweat racing down his face. He felt the unusual power that came from the transformation and the effects that it just had on his body.
Nevertheless however, it only served that there was one last enemy of his that didn't attack yet, which prompted him to turn to see a glaring Natsu Dragneel with two lit fists, one with flames, and one with electricity. Natsu was once again in Lightning Fire Dragon Mode, though not to such a grand degree as before. However, it was certainly dangerous, if not just or more dangerous than Atomix's nuclear beam.
Natsu shot forward in a burst of fire and lightning, heading straight for Hades with his arms cocked back and glowing with brimming elements. He held his hands close together as a sphere of bright formed in-between his palms. Hades wasn't taking anymore chances, and quickly acted. He quick beckoned his palms together to form a condensed sphere of darkness.
"New Dragon Slayer Secret Art!" Natsu however screams, appearing right in front of Hades with his attack ready to go.
'NO—I'M NOT GOING TO MAK—'
"Crimson Lotus: Exploding Lightning Blade!" Releasing the enhanced version of Crimson Lotus: Exploding Flame Blade, after swinging his arms around, Natsu extended the respected elements in his hands at length, creating a vortex of fire and lightning. Hades' eyes went wide in horror as the vortex consumed him. Large yellow and red explosions raced down deck as Hades was consumed within and pushed away with an unstoppable force. When the smoke cleared, a big gaping amount of skid and destruction could be seen in the ground. Upon closer examination, everyone could see that Hades' body had been punched through and finally subdued, leaving him on the floor with a tattered body.
It seemed to be truly over… But was it such?
…With the fighting halted, it was then that Natsu had to shudder his eyes and cover them with his forearm as rays of sunlight began to pierce onto the island. Glaring down at Hades, he could see that he was groaning around, twitching uncomfortably with no sign of getting up. This time, it was for good. Seeing that the battle was finally over, he slowly dropped to his knees, before facing the floor with a tired face.
"…We've done, Gramps. We showed 'em." He muttered weakly, but clenching his fists in victory. "We showed the power of the guild… Everyone placed their lives on the line and showed everything they could do."
With Hades defeated, after slamming his fists onto the plank, Natsu screams out in celebration, proud of the power of his guild just as the sun rises from the horizon. While Laxus manages to stand up on his own, he does give a smirk as everyone gathers around the screaming Natsu, who graciously yells and announces the incredible might of Fairy Tail, echoing through the entirety of the island as everyone begins to celebrate in their victory. After a minute or two, the commotion finally began to calm down; and while Hades remained twitching on the ground, everyone was now aware that Hades still might be able to fight to a degree should he reobtain consciousness, though they were still gleaming a bit regardless.
"Heh… It's finally over." Gray smiles, grasping onto his side in slight discomfort.
"Yeah… It's truly finished." Erza agrees, Requipping back to her normal Heart Kreuz set.
"W-We won, didn't we?" Wendy hopped around, asking Ben with a puffy face of hopefulness. "Right?"
"Heh… I can certainly say that for now at least. Happy and the others must've done their part." Ben chuckled, before cracking his neck in discomfort. "Ow… That's assuming they aren't swarmed by Grimoire Heart members though."
As everyone was beginning to take a moment to relax, Lucy approached Natsu and handed him back his scarf. However, while the fleeting moments of joy were happening, they were soon replaced by wails of desperation by a certain blue furred Exceed, who along with Lily and Carla, were seen coming up from the lower levels of the ship towards Natsu and company.
"AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHH!" Happy's voice could be heard from all the way on the other side as he and Carla first approached the group. "Natsu! Save me!"
"Everyone, we've got company!" Carla yelled as well. "Behind us!"
"Oh, what now…?" Natsu groaned as he began to put his scarf back on. "What're guys talking about—Holy crap!"
"Wait… Aren't those…?" Lucy and everyone else turned as well, only to frown at the company chasing Lily. Tons and tons of Grimoire Heart members were approaching the group.
"Donuts…" Ben sighed. Looking down at the Omnitrix, unfortunately it was down in Recharge Mode, meaning that Ben couldn't really do anything, if at all now. "I've got nothing to deal with them. Crap, jinxing the Universe at a time like this…"
"This ain't good… We don't have any Magic Power left." Gray clicked his tongue in annoyance.
"And just when we were about to get out of this mess…" Wendy speaks, grumbling a bit.
Lily pants heavily, regrouping with everyone else. "M-My deepest apologies… I've tried to hold them off as long as I could, but I am also now out of Magic Power."
"They're all angry!" Happy quirked in response to the angry mob of Grimoire Heart members. "That's bad!"
"Well, given what we just done…" Carla sweat dropped.
"Well, if I try to kill myself, maybe the Omnitrix might be forced to go back into Active Mode and I'll—"
"—Don't even try to act out that thought, Ben." A voice called out all of a sudden, which nearly made Ben fall over in response. The injured Omnitrix wielder and everyone else immediately turned to the source of the familiar voice. Standing at edge of the ship was…
"Gramps!" Natsu's eyes gleamed at the sight of the Master of Fairy Tail, as well as those who were at the Resting Point. "And everyone else!"
"Master! And Gajeel-san as well!" Wendy smiled wholeheartedly. "I'm so glad!"
"You're all safe! What a relief!" Gray sighed heavily, which made Erza smirk in response to a thought that was in the back of her mind.
'When the Tenrou Tree returns, those under its divine protection will do so as well…' A familiar Mage's voice rang in her head. While the group was happy to see the previously injured members recovered, Laxus and Makarov exchanged a glance. Though a bit awkward, things were pretty okay for the time being, so after getting a look at his grandson, Makarov turned to the group of Grimoire Heart members who had gathered by them, giving them a good glare. His, as well as everyone else's appearance, made the opposing group retreat a bit as they recognized the new level of threat.
"W-What? There's more of them!" A member called out in shock.
One of the members seemed to recognize Makarov as well. "H-Hey, isn't that Makarov?"
"S-Shit! Over there!" Another pointed out. "On the ground… T-That's Master Hades! H-He's been defeated, oh crap!"
With their group starting to panic, Makarov stepped forward, breathing in to give them one single phrase of advice. "If you wanna settle the score, fine! But if you don't… Then get off this island this instant!"
It didn't take any more convincing to have all the members scatter about like a pack of afraid mice. The group watched them utter yelling's of apologies and other unintelligible nonsense, but it didn't take long for all the retreating members to disappear from their line of sight. Once they were gone, it was then that everyone truly began to celebrate on their victory. Friends hugged; partners congratulated one another for surviving… And grandfather and grandson…
Well… Laxus sat down, marbles of sweat dropping down his face in an awkward way as Makarov began to approach him. As he gave Laxus another look, the blond immediately glanced away in gawkiness. However, even then, Makarov couldn't help but be a little happy at his grandson appearing to help the guild, though he had to put a front for professional's sake.
"…You did good, coming back." Makarov stated…however. "Is what you think that's what I'd tell ya, you blockhead idiot!"
Suddenly, his demeanor changed to one of comical anger, truly that of a ranting grandparent. "Ya think you can set foot on Tenrou Island while you're still expelled?! For cryin' out loud, you foolish grandson of mine…!"
"Ugh… Pipe down, old man…" Laxus sweat dropped.
"C-Come now, Master…" Levy chuckled nervously. "Calm down a bit…"
"Oooh! He enlarged his face with Giant!" Lily observed.
"That's certainly a unique usage of it." Ben shrugged, though he turned over to the Thunder God Tribe, who looked like they were about to let loose. "Soooo… You guys aren't going to—"
"LAAAAAAAXUSSSSSSS!" All three members rushed past Ben, knocking him aside like a ragdoll as they tackled Laxus down to the floor in utter happiness.
"Laxus, you're back?!" Evergreen squeaked. "Yay!"
"The boss is back, heck yeah!" Bickslow cried out tears of joy. "This calls for a celebration!"
"We've missed you so much!" Freed agreed, already bawling his eyes out against the Lightning Mage.
Laxus didn't like the attention much though. "C-Come on, get offa me…"
Elfman could only sweat a little at the sight of the bickering Makarov as Wendy tended to Ben. "M-Master sure is harsh… Though I'm sure that's because he's a real man…"
"Yep… But, while he's still expelled, is it?" Mira noted with an extremely happy look on her face, even with a little redness to it. While everyone was getting back with one another, it was then that Natsu finally got back on track to the second most important thing to do other than take care of Grimoire Heart and their invasion on Tenrou Island.
"ALRIGHT! Now then, it's time to continue the exam!" The hotheaded Mage announced.
"What?! You're still going to go at it!?" Happy flinched. "You've gotta be kidding me!"
"Hey! The second test was interrupted, so this attempt doesn't count!" Natsu tried to argue. "So why don't we just settle things with a nice and simple battle royale?!"
"What the hell is wrong with your head?!" Gajeel barked, slamming his forehead into Natsu's. "You think you can best me when you're all busted up like that?"
"S-Stop it, Gajeel…!" Levy yelped in embarrassment, only for Natsu to grin.
"Yeah, buddy! If it's against you, it'll be a cinch!" He boasted, which actually made Gajeel flinch. "'Cause now I'm a Lightning Fire—Geeh…!"
Suddenly however, Natsu's face began to pale out. Gajeel and Levy take a look at his face, only for the Fire Dragon Slayer to succumb to the ground within seconds. Immediately Ben stood above Natsu, poking his face with a stick as he tried to understand why he suddenly passed out.
"Huh, must be a side effect for eating an element that's not fire." He figured. "Serves him right."
"Indeed!" Erza unexpectedly agreed with a cheeky look. "Let that be a lesson to you too, Wendy."
"S-Speaking of which, shall we return to camp?" Said Dragon Slayer suggested as Ben stood next to her and Carla, who was in her arms. "We're all exhausted, aren't we?"
"We should have a mandatory resting session, or else none of our bodies will hold up." Carla warned. "Let's all go back, shall we?"
As soon as her suggestion got by, everyone agreed for it in a heartbeat. The Thunder God Tribe began to support Laxus as they and everyone else began to join the group back towards camp. Leaving everyone aside, as Lucy began to support Natsu, she noticed that everyone else was already approaching off the ship, which made her face pale a bit due to the weight of Natsu leaning against her.
"Whaaaa…? I'm the only one that's going to carry Natsu?" She whined.
"I'll be here to cheer you on, if that helps." Happy shrugged.
"That doesn't count, Happy!" Ben retorted from afar. "Leave it to Capricorn!"
"Capricorn?" Lucy blinked. "Why'd he be—"
Suddenly, said Spirit appeared and carried her into his arms. The Goat Spirit's shades flickered with a sense of responsibility as the blonde Mage exerted symptoms of confusion. "Uh…?"
"Leave this to meh, Lucy-sama." The Spirit insisted, while also carry Natsu like he was a bag of luggage. "You have done well."
"O-Oh, Capricorn! Thank you… But is it fine to carry Natsu like…that?" She then glanced down at her teammate with an awkward smile.
As the last of the group finally began to walk off, before Makarov could leave… A familiar voice called from afar.
"…Makarov." Hades called, still remaining dormant on the ground. "…Finish me off."
Though it made the old man stop, Makarov seemed absolutely adamant on the thought. "…From battling you, I learned something very important. In return for that, I shall overlook what you and your guild has done this time. Please, leave the island."
Hades sighs a bit, before giving the Master of Fairy Tail a fair warning. "Haa… You still show those signs of weakness. If you let me live, then next time I shall surely crush you and your guild."
"I lost to you." Makarov argued. "But my children defeated you."
"That's false, however." Hades snorted, correcting him. "They destroyed my heart, and the restoration of the Great Tenrou Tree replenished their strength enough to defeat me. If it weren't for those coincidences, I would not have lost to your brats."
"…Why? Why did you fall to the path of darkness for?" Choosing to ignore his previous statement, Makarov went about with another question.
"…I told you once." Hades began to respond. "The true nature of Magic is that of darkness. Miracles that are born in the depths of darkness are those that have come to be called "Magic". After I retired from Fairy Tail, I wished to find the truth of this world by surging down the path of Magic… This world, Earth Land, is one that is overflowing with too much Magic. It is a false world. The true one is that of the Ultimate Magic World… And I wanted to see that world with my own two eyes. For that goal, I needed to obtain the keys to resurrect the legendary Black Mage Zeref… And I was so close to it."
"…Even if you do find it, nothing will change." Makarov simply answered as he began to walk on again, which made Hades flinch, as well as Laxus.
"What do you—"
"—If the true nature of Magic is darkness, then so be it. And if it's light, then that's fine as well. After all… Magic is alive. It is a role that changes with the times; it grows alongside with us. Every person has their own version of what "Magic" is… Whether that is spell casting, or the use of technology, each individual thinks of it differently. It can become anything; light, darkness, red, or even blue. That freedom is something that Fairy Tail lives with… And that is something that I learned from you."
Over an hour had passed since Fairy Tail had successfully defeated Grimoire Heart and repelled their invasion on Tenrou Island. Everyone was more than relieved to see that they had survived the intense conflict that had taken apart through the last day. The group walked out from the ship and had rendezvous back at the Resting Point, and had taken a bit of time to actually clean it up after Rustyrose and the others had messed it up.
Capricorn carried an unconscious Natsu back the entire way, ignoring the protests from the guys of the group who had offered to carry him. And in the meanwhile, everyone else had taken this time to finally relax and get some healing to actually get done. Anyone could tell that they were utterly exhausted, and they understood why. After all, they had battled against an entire Dark Guild, defeated a former Master of Fairy Tail, and had undergone the trials prior to this. Too much action being taken would be an absolute understatement.
As soon as they reached camp, Natsu's unconscious body soon underwent from passed out to loud snoring, though even then, he and the others had been patched up after their battle with Hades.
"Ugh, can't you be quiet while napping, Natsu?!" Elfman groaned.
"Come on, just let him sleep." Mira giggled. "He's gone through a lot the last several hours."
"Oh, Mira-nee!" Lisanna suddenly got an idea. "I just thought of something good!"
"W-What…?" Elfman blinked, only to nearly do a spit take once Lisanna tied Natsu's muggy hair into a pair of twin pigtails. "E-Er…"
"Heh-heh… How's this? It's pig-tail twin-tail Natsu! Whatcha think, ain't he cute?" She proposed with a smug face, which made Mira laugh out loud.
Over with Happy and Carla, the two Exceeds were relieving memories of their time in the ship.
"Huh… So that thing we destroyed was Master Hades' heart?" The blue furred Exceeded stated as he took a chomp out from his stew.
"Yeah… But honestly, it was pretty lucky that we figured it out." Carla shrugged. "Well, call it a day's work I suppose."
"Surely. If we considered that thing to be the power source of the ship, then we certainly accomplished our mission as the Exceed Squad." Lily reassured the two of them with a thumbs up.
"O-Oi! You ain't hurt, are ya, Lily?!" Gajeel suddenly asked, approaching Lily in his extremely bandaged state. "Tell me you're fine!"
"Well… Yes, I'm in a far better shape than you are." Lily sweat dropped at his partner's giddy tone.
At the medicinal bay, Wendy and some of the others had taken the time to patch up and tend to the wounded. Wendy had dressed back to the clothes she had before Hades attempted to Katsu her, but she certainly did like the clothes that she obtained from Horologium. Regardless though, the first on her list was Ben, who was unable to patch himself up for the time being due to over usage of the Omnitrix. Just like how Natsu kept on using all the power in an instant that he gained from eating Laxus' lightning and regaining his Magic Power from the Tenrou Tree, Ben had done something similar with Atomix, which left the Omnitrix in a longer Recharge State than normal.
First of all, to Ben's reluctance, she took notice of the numerous cuts and bruises across his body and stripped him of his top. He definitely needed to have them treated and bandaged up due to taking most of the damage from Hades' Bullet Magic. To Ben's embarrassment as well, as Wendy was deep in thought with healing her mate, everyone else went cat eyed as she tended to him with lovingly eyes. They all thought she resembled some sort of saint for a moment.
"You saved my life again… Thank you." She counted the times when Ben tried to get her out from Katsu's range, and even, she also recalled all the times that they went on requests together. "I'll do my best to patch you up!"
"R-Right…" He blushed immensely. He couldn't help but do so when he stared at her angelic appearance despite her own injuries. She was truly a being of the sky, which only made Happy and few others snicker in response to his embarrassment. However, he was grateful and happy to garner so much attention from her, so he unconsciously smiled in response as well.
Levy couldn't help but be a bit embarrassed with how direct Wendy was with her affection. "H-How frightening…"
After Wendy was done treating Happy's injuries a little later, she gestured for her to come over as well. "How about I tend to your wounds as well, Levy-san?"
"A-Ah, I'm fine. Wendy, why don't you and Ben rest for a bit?" The Letter Mage suggested, though to her surprise, she could see a small fire in the Dragon Slayer's eyes.
"No! In fact, I feel extremely rejuvenated now that the Great Tenrou Tree is back to the way it is!" She clenches her fists as proof, before cupping them together under the sunlight. "My condition is in a direct coorelation to the environment around me! This is the purest spot for me to be in, so I feel pretty divine if I may say so myself!"
"…Are you a saint?" Ben blushed again, this time more so than ever. 'Damn it… She's so cute…'
"Speaking of which, how did the Tenrou Tree return to normal?" Erza then questioned. "It's certainly strange, don't you think?"
Gray eyes her from afar, before turning off to another part of the island. He wondered if a certain Time of Arc user did something. '…Ultear? Nah, couldn't be her.'
Bringing him out from his thoughts however was a ruffle in the bushes next to them. The two flinch on reflex, only for their surprise to turn to confusion as they witness Juvia to roll out with a tired look on her face.
"J-Juvia?" Gray croaked, his voice being a mixture of relief and confusion. "You're safe?"
"—JUVIA IS SO SORRY…!" The Water Mage soon cried out in agony, though it was obviously fake. "Juvia let Zeref get away! Please… Punish Juvia!"
The Ice Mage began to pale out however as Juvia began to suggestively pose herself towards her figure of attention. "P-Punish?! H-Hey, I'm not into that kinda stuff!"
"But Juvia is!" Said blue haired Mage replied, which made Ben and Wendy look over in response.
"Gray-san, what is she referring to?"
"HELL IF I KNOW!"
After some time had passed, Gildarts had finally returned back to camp as well. After getting treated with bandages, he figured that he would spend some time with the blond rascal that was Laxus. Sitting down next to him, the first thing he mentioned was about the news he heard about him getting expelled from the guild because of the stunt he pulled with the Battle of Fairy Tail event he did before the Fantasia Parade.
"Kek! Ya went and got expelled!" The Crush Mage cackled. "Ha! Lame!"
"Ah, shut it, ya old fart!" Laxus growled.
"GILDARTS, FIGHT ME—"
All of a sudden, Natsu approached the strongest Mage in Fairy Tail with a declaration of challenge…only to get slammed into the ground with a single tap to the noggin. Gildarts sighs a little as Natsu laid down onto the floor once again. "Damn it brat, heal up!" first."
"Tell me about it…" Ben groaned as he sat with Wendy. "Don't get hurt more! Even with the Tenrou Tree here, Wendy can't heal forever!"
The latter was seen tending to the wounds of her fellow guildmates. With the Tenrou Tree restored, Wendy was feeling quite well, in fact, well enough that should continuously use her Healing Magic. There was already a long line for those in need for healing, starting with Levy, Lily, Gajeel, Bickslow, Elfman, and… Natsu, naturally.
"W-Wendy… I need healing." Natsu croaked. "I need healing… I require healing…"
"Healing Magic is certainly a rarity." Bickslow complimented. "It's pretty cool as well."
"It's a manly Magic." Elfman nodded.
"Make sure you get every wound healed, Lily." Gajeel nagged. "I can't have my partner performing with anything hindering him!"
"Shouldn't you get the most though? Just look at you, your entire body's bandaged up." Said partner sweat dropped.
"Seems like there's a line…" Levy chuckled. "Sorry for straining you so much, Wendy."
"No, it's okay, like I said!" Wendy argued with another smile. "This is when I can be the most helpful!"
"Don't overdo it though." Ben warned. "Otherwise I'll have to carry you to make you rest."
"R-Right…" Contrary to her cheery nature, that actually made her blush a bit. "Well, just a bit more and—"
"Wendy, switch with me, shall you?" A voice, revealed to be Erza's suddenly called. Everyone turned, only to gawked at the attire she was wearing.
"A nurse outfit…?" Ben was speechless. "I never though I would see one in this world, or rather, not like this."
"E-Erza-san! That outfit…" Wendy was a bit hasty in wanting to judge it as well. "A nurse's uniform… But you don't have any healing capabilities though? Nor any qualifications to perform medicinal procedures?"
"A difference in ability has no matter in the case of midbattle, Wendy." Erza smirks with confidence. "It is your heart that is tested."
"B-Battle?" The word itself made her shudder a bit. Ben figured that it was probably a reminder of the stupidly hectic battle that they just went through, though that would be certainly understandable if that was the case. He began to pat her head to calm her down, but it didn't really prove to do so once Erza began to take over for Wendy's nursery duties. The two watches as she sat back down on the crate that Wendy used as a makeshift
"Now then… Tell me straight out; where does it hurt?" She inquired, posturing her legs in an otherwise seductive matter. "Shall I lower that fever of yours first—or would you rather prefer a direct injection?"
"…Is she just referring to terms that she read in magazines and novels before?" Ben turned to Wendy, who merely shrugged in response. Gray and the other guys didn't really have an enthusiastic approach to Erza's method of healing however, sweat dropping and being cautious around the redheaded nurse wannabe. Certainly, this wasn't the redhead Mage's first attempt at a fiasco such as this, Ben could tell. Even though Erza represented a more dignified side of Fairy Tail to the eye of the public, she couldn't be a member without having some weird traits herself.
"Great… Look at what's she started now." Gray sighs. "We're going to get even more busted up now…"
Gajeel and Natsu nodded in agreement. "This is pretty messed up… We should get it over with first then."
"—Hey, get in line, ya asswipes!" Bickslow however calls them out for cutting in line, which in fact had actually gotten longer. Behind Elfman was now Makarov, Gildarts, and Laxus. This only served to crush Wendy's spirit. So many individuals that she could've taken care of herself, all taken away by the womanly charms of a certain redheaded knight.
"YOU SAVAGE MALES!" Carla immediately retorts upon seizing the opportunity. "Have some dignity!"
"…Women, huh?" She chuckles to herself in a depressed matter. "I wonder if I'll get to be like that…"
"H-Hey, isn't it good to rest up a bit?" Sensing the chaos within Wendy, Levy tried to calm her down, but it certainly didn't seem to do the trick. She couldn't even get her mood to lighten up either.
"…Is it because my chest is too small, Ben?" Wendy mumbled in disparity, particularly to her mate. Ben, while blushing at the thought of a grown-up version of his girlfriend, cleared his throat as he patted her shoulder.
"…You have potential." He simply whispered. "We're still young."
While that seemed to cheer her up a great amount, it didn't help the fact that Erza… Was a terrible nurse.
The two turned over to see the redhead manhandle Gajeel and Gray in bandages. It was like she was trying to wrap them up to become mummies, which surprisingly enough didn't play well with a certain Water Mage and Letter Mage. Even the Exceeds noticed that the tension and memories of the recent battle had pretty gone out entirely at this point, which proved to be a good thing, but also something that should take more prominent role in recent memories to be completely honest. Regardless, Erza was doing a pretty terrible job at attempting to reconcile her fellow guildmates' worries regarding their injuries.
Unconsciously, Ben closed his eyes and facepalmed; planting yet another landmark to remember the chaotic nature of the Fairy Tail Guild. Realizing what he did however, he simply snorted at the sight of his guildmates finally starting to take a breather. Everyone was really lively now, whether they were injured or not. However, there remained one question… Were the exams over?
"Alright everyone, settle down!" Makarov calls out, beckoning the attention of every Fairy Tail member in the area. "I've got an extremely important announcement to make to all of you!"
Later in the morning, the commotion and aftermath of the war between the Fairies and Devils had finally started to come to a close. After making sure that everything in the Resting Point was accounted for, Ben exited out from the makeshift base of a tent that the guild was using for storing their provisions and other supplies. Shifting out from the fabric behind him, he let out a tired yawn as the rays of daylight burned themselves onto his face. The land was now patched up more or less, with debris moved away and storage from the ship that brought over the group moved over to yonder area.
Said Guild Master's voice reached his ears as he exited out, with the Omnitrix wielder's gaze turning to the old man. He was back in his summer attire, though he was still covered to the brim with plaster and bandages. However, even then, he seemed to be quite lively as he stood atop a stack of crates. He was overlooking all of the members who had gathered around. Even the rowdy ones remained silent as they stared at their Guild Master, as Makarov typically didn't do this kind of recalling unless it was for an announcement of some sort. And since this was such a case, especially after the interruption of their S-Class Exam and the invasion of Grimoire Heart, no doubt it was something to listen in to.
Casually joining with the crowd, Ben scourged until he reached next to Wendy amongst the curious murmurs of his fellow guildmates. What did Makarov have to say?
"Ahem…" Clearing his throat, Makarov starts. "From the day we return to the guild from Tenrou Island… I'M GONNA INTRODUCE A WOMEN'S ONLY DRESS CODE! YA GOTTA CHOOSE BETWEEN A NURSE OUTFIT OR A SCHOOL SWIMSUIT!"
"WHAT?!" Lucy was the first to retort against this sudden change in attitude. "I ain't heard about this! The hell are you on, Master?!"
On the contrary, Erza seemed to be delighted in the topic of cosplay. "No… Actually, that seems quite interesting."
"Don't encourage him!" Ben flinched. "I ain't crossdressing again! Mira! Converse! Now!"
"…Master." Pointing a finger at Mira, said eldest sibling of the Strauss family responded to his commanded. She quickly zipped over and haunted behind Makarov's figure, letting out an eerie look on her face… One of a She-Devil. "This is no time for jokes. Alright?"
"I-I'm sorry! I was just so caught up in the mood!" Immediately feeling like his life was in danger again, Makarov chose the coward's way out. Quickly regaining his composure, he ushered Ben to come to his side. "…Would you do the honors?"
"Fine." Rolling his eyes, Ben quickly approached the crates and climbed up, reaching the same elevation as Makarov. "Now then… This is probably going to be a shocker for everyone, but I'm pretty sure that you'll understand why we came to such a decision."
"What? Just get on with it!" Natsu insists, growling a little in impatience. "Don't be a buzzkill!"
"It can't be worse than what we've gone through so far." Gray figured. "Just say it."
The next few seconds past after he said that. Raising a brow, Ben seemed to be acting normal; however, after a moment of glancing towards Makarov and Mira, he finally decided to speak his mind, sighing a bit before folding his arms.
"Well… We're going to be postponing the S-Class Advancement Exam for the time being." He dropped. It took a few moments for his words to register in the minds of the participants, especially the partners of said individuals. Naturally, the first thing they did to react to it was shout out in shock and confusion, even climbing up to Ben's face to express their doubts on his words. Knowing this would happen, he and Makarov sigh in content with the situation, gesturing the old man to speak up afterwards.
"Yes! Like-he-just-said! The Exam will be on hold!" He repeated, this time with the hotheaded males of Fairy Tail turning their attention to him. "That's the decision we came to make!"
"Bullcrap! I can't just accept that, Gramps! We've been waiting way too long for this!" Gray first barked out.
"At least tell us why it's on hold!" Natsu growled.
Unexpectedly however, even Gajeel seemed to be a bit anxious about the situation despite not being a candidate to advance in the first place. "Make me S-Class, damn it!"
"Well, what else can we do?" Ben shrugs, not wanting to bother protesting against them as much as he would like to. "Everything's been thrown all around with all the bedlam that came in like a storm. Tell it to them straight, Mira."
"Indeed." The white-haired teen nods, listing off a couple of things from a notepad. "For starters, we had a member of the Magic Council that had infiltrated our own guild, in which they hoped to use to exploit any of Fairy Tail's secrets. Grimoire Heart's full-scale invasion on the island messed up pretty much everything after not; the landscape, the exam itself, you name it. All of these events have pretty much knocked out our entire schedule for this exam. I'm sorry to say, but we should probably hold another event to further discuss this."
"…Then I suppose we have no choice but to prolong this until a further notice." Levy sighs. However, she didn't seem to be completely pooped out of it.
Gajeel however was a bit livid. "Wha—Hey! You're really okay with this, damn it?!"
"Why are you so worked up about it though?" Lily wondered, confused on his partner's outrage. "It's not like you're the one advancing."
"A man should know when to give in…" Elfman sighed. "Better luck next time then."
"But still… Aaaarrgh…! Damn it all, I so wanted to advance to S-Class!" Gray whimpered, grasping his temple in frustration. "How long is it until we can get another chance!"
"Hey, as long as we don't give up, we're definitely gonna be S-Class Mages, damn it!" Natsu however intervened with a confident tone. "You, Elfman, and Levy have all given up, right?! Then I'll take your dreams and ascend to the next level! S-CLASS HERE I COME, BOOYAH BABY!"
"Ugh… Give it a rest, Natsu." Ben grumbles, gripping his forehead in annoyance before turning to walk off. "Alright, I've had enough with this. Master, just make up something to get Natsu's riled up energy spent. I'm going to overlook the ship's preparation for sailing in the meantime. We've got plenty of time after we've recovered."
With that said, Ben exited the area and proceeded to go onto another part of the island where some other members were. The others watched as his figure disappeared into the distance, but it didn't change much in their minds. Though they respected Ben's request and idea, they were still in the mood to asking how things would play out. And though those thoughts were unconscious, they would be some of the very last ones they had on this island, because after all…
"…Is it true?" He suddenly says, aspiring to ask a question to the First Master of Fairy Tail. "Is that really coming here?"
"…Prepare." Was all Mavis simply alleged in response, giving him a vague, but deeply foreshadowing answer. "This will be the greatest peril you have encountered, and it will triumph even this ordeal. Easily, in fact."
Whelp, and there you have it folks, the second to last chapter of this Arc is done.
And… Well… I'll tell you all that college and working takes sooooo much time and effort... And while I understand the obvious benefits for going to college and earning experience/money with a job, it just cuts so much time from things that I really wanted to do, such as writing for this story and my others. Speaking of which, I am going to continue re-editing the early chapters of this story like I've promised, so please look forward to those.
Anyways, this chapter has been completed. What did you all think? After the Tenrou Island Arc will be another Arc made from my own originality, but based on the suggestions and ideas from you guys. It will be called the "Seven Years Passing" Arc. To give you a sneak peak of what I have in mind, take into consideration some of the facts that Fairy Tail's canon has given us up until this point, including the likes of Dragon Slayer Magic:
1. Acnologia's version of Dragon Slayer Magic is able to allow him to reap the very souls of Dragons, leaving them in a half-dead state. This was evidenced by the Dragons Igneel, Metalicana, Grandeeney, Weisslogia, and Skiadrum. Since Ben will be fighting Acnologia as a Dragon himself… You'll get the picture.
2. The key that generated from the meeting with the Celestial Spirit King as well as the object granted to Makarov from Paradox will also prove to be key plot items in this upcoming Arc!
3. Expect Ben's past to be revealed to everyone else, as well as the state and inside of the Omnitrix.
Anyhow, that's all the hints I'll be giving out for now. So, without any further ado, I'll see you in the next chapter! Please R&R, and I'll see you all later! Flames begone!