Big freakin' author's note at the end.

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Natsu was beyond happy. He had somehow managed to drive off the horde of monstrous things that the Master had called 'females', he had become a hero to his village instead of just the joke, he had awakened his sacred rod, and he got to keep the female he had captured!

Grinning ear to ear with joy and pride, Natsu turned to cut his female's bonds and put his hand on her head. He absently noted that not only was her squishy chest softer than his own, her hair was as well. He chalked it up to being another weird female thing.

"From now on, you belong to me."

The wide eyed stare she gave him in response made him grin even harder. He liked the way her eyes looked so big and round and sparkly.

Without another word, he picked her up, throwing her over his shoulder, to take her to his hut. The other males didn't seem too happy about that, but if they wanted a female, they would just have to catch their own like he did. There was no way he was going to share her with any of those bozos.

As he left the grumbling group, he could hear the Master start barking orders.

"Alright you brats! It's time to get to work on reparing the stuff those females destroyed."

The collective groaning of his tribesmen was the last thing he heard before making it out of earshot. His hut was at the far edge of the village, partially in the forest, so it was a little bit of a walk there from the village center. He had always enjoyed the privacy, and doubly so now that he had his female. He didn't want any of the others eyeing her or trying to steal her.

Finally reaching his small hut, he threw back the large hide that covered the doorway to reveal its cluttered interior. Somewhat gently, Natsu set the female on his bedding of soft furs to make her comfortable. He was serious when he told the others that he would take care of her and raise her properly.

"So, how do you like your new home?" Natsu asked, grinning ear to ear. His smile was so wide that his sharp, angular eyes were mere lines.

The female's body slowly unfolded from her almost balled up position. She reminded him a bit of some of the animals he had hunted over the years. His smile fell a little. He didn't want her to be this scared.

"It's really different from my home in the female's tribe."

Her wording rubbed Natsu the wrong way, but he let it go. She was there with him, and that was how it would stay. He fought and won against her tribe just to keep her, and he was not about to let her go anytime soon.

"This is your home now," Natsu smiled brightly again in an attempt to make her a little more comfortable. "Don't worry, I'll take good care of you. I'll feed you and walk you and everything."

The female's face turned down into a cute scowl.k

"I'm not a pet!"

Natsu shrugged, not really caring about the semantics of the issue. He didn't care what she was exactly as long as she was his.

"Whatever. Now we need to come up with a name for you. I was thinking something like Luigi."

He didn't expect the female to look so horrified.

"No! I already have a name! It's Lucy. Don't call me something as ridiculous as Luigi!"

"You already have a name? Damn. Naming is half the fun."

Natsu quickly closed the distance between the two of them to examine her more thoroughly now that he had time and was alone with her. He didn't notice her discomfort or her fidgetting. He was too focused on his task.

"What...what are you doing?" she stuttered when he reached out to touch one of the locks of hair framing her face.

"Trying to figure you out, " he replied in a quiet tone. "You look human like I am, but you have so many differences, too. And you somehow caused my sacred rod to wake up. It's never done that before. The other males used to make fun of me that I'm this old and never had it wake up before."

The female, who he now knew was called Lucy, raised her own hand slowly, hesitantly, until her trembling fingers touched his bright pink hair. Her expression showed just as much curiosity as his own, but was tempered by caution.

"You are different from what I know, too. I've heard stories of males, but they didn't describe you very well. The one you call Laxus fits the description much better than you or anyone else in this village."

"At least you had some stories. Before today, I hadn't heard anything at all about females." Natsu sat back for a moment, his face scrunched with the force of how hard he was thinking. "I still can't get over that you don't have a sacred rod. That's so weird. Everything about you is weird."

The female took offence to the statement.

"If I'm so weird, then just let me go home!"

"No way," the incensed male growled. "You're mine, and I got you fair and square. This is your home now."

The female looked defiant.

"My tribe will come for me."

"And I will beat them back again."

"Your win was a one time thing. They will beat you next time."

"No way! All I have to do is figure out what made my sacred rod wake up, and I'll beat 'em every time."

"And how exactly are you going to figure that out? Things were happening so fast. How are you going to isolate the exact trigger?" She huffed as she saw figurative question marks floating around his head. "How are you going to find out what exactly caused it?" She was starting to get the impression that he was a bit...simple.

The evil shining through his answering grin made her regret her question.

"I already have a big clue." He looked ber over, and his smile grew at her worried expression. "You."

"Me?" Her confusion was a thick haze surrounding her.

Natsu excitedly nodded his head.

"Yeah! It all started when I grabbed your squishy blobs on your chest. I bet it would happen again if I grabbed them!"

"Pervert!"

And Natsu suddenly found himself sailing in the air through his front door. He laid on the ground briefly in a stunned daze. He never thought that such a small body, one that clearly didn't have a lot of muscles like him, could kick so hard.

He went back into his hut to see the female seething like a wet sabertooth cat.

"Why'd ya kick me?"

"You can't just grab me like that out of nowhere."

"Why?"

"Well, would you grab one of the other males like that?"

"Blegh." Natsu's face shifted to a nearly green expression of disgust. "Why would I want to?"

"You can't just grab me like that again. I don't want to be grabbed."

"Why? I don't understand. You sounded like you liked it when I did it before."

Lucy blushed bright red. She gave Natsu the impression of the red of a dragon's scales. He liked her re face and resolved to make her do it more.

Meanwhile, Lucy felt that she could die of embarrassment. She had to grudgingly admit to herself that the sensation of his hands on her breasts had felt good. Really good. It was something she had never experienced before, but it hadn't felt right to have those strange feelings infront of a crowd of people. She felt to vulnerable and exposed. It didn't help that she didn't know this male, didn't trust him, and such a stranger had made her feel like that.

"That isn't the point. I don't know you. You're a stranger. I don't want to trust you with my body. You might hurt me."

Natsu's face fell with her words. She thought he might hurt her? Of course he didn't want to hurt her! Hadn't he already promised to take good care of her? A new wave of determination filled his belly.

"I'll just have to prove that I won't hurt you. We won't be strangers for long. You'll see. We'll be friends before you know it."

Lucy tried to ignore the way her heart beat from his happy and confident grin.

That heartbeat increased a thousand fold when he started taking off the furs and hides from his hard and flat upper body.

"Why are you stripping?"

He had the nerve to look at her like she was stupid.

"I can't go to bed in my clothes, weirdo."

"But, what about your sacred rod? It scared my whole tribe away. I'm scared of it, too."

Natsu didn't quite know what to think about that, but he could understand. It seemed to him that sacred rods and females were enemies. At least, that was the impression he got from the battle between males and females.

"How about I keep my fur wrap on so my sacred rod stays covered?"

Lucy thought it over for a minute before nodding.

"That should work."

Natsu nodded in return and finished stripping his upper half. He made a motion to Lucy for her to scoot over and make room for him in the fur bedding. She did so without hesitation. It did not cross their minds to try to sleep separately. In both of their tribes, it was common for someone to share bedding with their fellows whether it be for shared warmth or for saving limited space.

Lucy soon realized that things might be more difficult than she thought. As soon as Natsu was asleep, the thought of escaping in the night crossed her mind. That was until Natsu revealed that not only did he snore like a buffalo, he also cuddled...like a bear. No, that wasn't quite right. Natsu was worse than a bear. Lucy didn't think that even a short faced bear could constrict so tightly with its arms. She was lucky that she could even breathe.

It reminded her a lot of the times she had to share bedding with Erza or Juvia. Both of them had the same nighttime cuddle stranglehold on bedmates.

Resigning herself to her fate since there would be no escape that night, Lucy fell asleep wrapped in the male's strong arms, his hard chest pressed up against her back. Before sleep fully claimed her, she acknowledged that it wasn't the least comfortable way to sleep.

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Lucy had to give the male credit. He didn't do anything half way. Since his declaration, he had been working as hard as he could to fulfill his promises to take care of her and to become friends. Every morning, he disentangled himself from their bedding, and left to hunt for food. He was clearly a skilled hunter, because he always came back with some game fairly quickly. Lucy was impressed. Then, he would make Igni, another impressive feat, and set the meat over it to 'cook'. Lucy was so curious about 'cooking' that she asked Natsu to teach her how. Such a thing was not done in her village since they didn't have anyone who could wield Igni.

Natsu eagerly set about teaching her the basics. It didn't take long for her to catch on, and soon Natsu declared that she was even better at it than him. Lucy couldn't help but preen under his praise, and before they hoth knew it, she had taken over cooking duty in their strange little household. The only one indifferent to it was Happy, but that was because he genuinely preffered his food to be completely raw. Lucy couldn't understand the cat's viewpoint. Now that she had learned of the world of cooked food, she didn't want to go back to raw.

The other males didn't come out to Natsu's hut, something that Lucy was thankful for. Natsu told her that they were busy repairing all of the damage done by her tribe, especially the busted dam. That made her feel a little bit guilty, but Natsu didn't seem to hold any kind of grudge towards her for it. She asked why he wasn't helping, to which he replied that they made him exempt due to being the one to drive the females away.

What Natsu didn't tell her was that driving the females away was only part of why he got out of working. The Master gave him special permission to stay home because several of the other males were much more interested in Lucy than they had a right to be. Natsu felt it was safer for him to stay close to home and keep the other males from letting their curiosity from getting the better of them and getting too close to her. Lucy belonged to Natsu, damn it, and he wasn't going to let some bastard try to take her away.

And so, the first week went very well. Lucy began to see that Natsu wasn't some demonic monster, and Natsu discovered that he liked her for her smiles just as much as he liked her as his prize.

Lucy was startled to discover how much she enjoyed talking to the male, and how she had started to look forward to him coming back to the hut.

One night after dinner (Lucy could not get over how good Natsu was at hunting. She had never eaten so well in her entire life.) when Happy was away on one of his frequent night fishing excursions, Natsu broke the comfortable silence of content and full bellies with a question.

"I know you said before that we were strangers, and you didn't trust me not to hurt you." He could see that she was paying very close attention from across the Igni he had made for her to cook on. "Has any of that changed? Have I proven myself to you?"

Lucy was silent for a moment, then released the tension with a sigh and a gentle smile.

"Natsu, I have to say that you've proven yourself on that. You've taken such good care of me. I've never been so warm or so well fed in my entire life. You have treated me well, and I've come to enjoy all of our conversations. I care about my tribe, and I do think they will rescue me before too long, but I can't say that I think you are bad or that I've hated my time here."

Natsu's face lit up like the sun. That was much better than the response he was expecting. He was happy that she was enjoying her time with him. The happier she was, the less likely that she would want to leave him at all. He wanted her to want to stay with him.

"So, does this mean that you will let me touch you like during the battle?"

Lucy should have expected that question, but it still took her by surprise. She thought it over for a moment. On the one hand, she was still very nervous about experiencing that vulnerability again. On the other hand, she was just as curious as he was about what would happen. He was curious about his sacred rod, and she was curious about the pleasant sensations that had gone through her body.

She looked around the hut, making absolutely sure they were alone. She didn't want this to be in front of any other sets of eyes again.

"Okay. You can." Her voice almost quavered at the end, but she managed to hold it steady.

Natsu figuratively and literally jumped for joy, a boisterous laugh escaping his firm chest. He saw Lucy begin to shy back at his gregariousness, and rushed to reassure her. His excitement was a little hard to contain sometimes.

"It's okay, Lucy," he soothed. "I'll be gentle. I promised I wouldn't hurt you, didn't I?"

Reassured by that smile of his, Lucy relaxed.

Natsu eagerly crossed the distance between them, and without further ado, latched both of his hands to the squishy, soft things on Lucy's chest.

Lucy was taken by surprise by both the sudden grab from Natsu and by the sensations flooding back through her body. A shaky moan escaped her lips unbidden.

Natsu, on the other hand, was taken by how much he enjoyed the way the squishy things felt in his hands. The texture of the flesh, the softness of the skin he could feel where her tiny top garment ended, and the way they spilled out between his fingers... All of it felt so good.

Just like he had thought, his sacred rod began to wake up again. He was right. She was the key to it.

He noticed that Lucy was breathing much harder than she had been just anfew minutes prior. However, she was giving no signals at all that she wanted him to stop. She was even pressing her chest more firmly into his hands and was making sounds that both he and his sacred rod enjoyed very much.

He squeeze and kneaded the flesh, feeling his sacred rod rise farther and farther. In his exploration of the round things, he noticed a tiny, hard lump appear on each one under the triangles of her top. He paid attention to them, running hus thumbs across to figure out what they were. This garnered an instant and fascinating reaction from his female. She gasped and let out even more of those wonderful and addictive sounds. Determined to get more of them to spill from her mouth, he focussed more on the little nubs, gently pinching them with his finger tips, always remembering to be gentle. The last thing he wanted to do at that moment was hurt her and scare her off of ever letting him do this again.

"Lucy, what are these little things?"

Lucy's flushed face met his gaze. Oh how he loved when it turned red. It was another reason for him to get her to do this with him again soon.

"They are my nipples," she said, her voice appealingly husky. "You have the same things on your chest."

"Really?" Natsu moved one of the triangles of her top to the side, ignoring her indignant squeek, and sure enough, the things underneath looked a lot like the ones on his chest. "They seem to feel good for you." Lucy threw her head back as he touched the uncovered nipple. Natsu was thrilled when she uncovered the other of her own accord.

Both hands on bare skin now, Natsu was really having a good time. It made him twice as happy that Lucy was enjoying it, too. Her sounds sent sensations straight through his sacred rod, making it feel hotter and tighter.

Unfortunately, his sacred rod was getting uncomfortable. Maybe it was because it wasn't used to being awake? Natsu reluctantly released his female, who was starting to look dazed. He felt pride that he had made her feel so good. Wincing, he tried to adjust how he was sitting to relieve pressure on his rod. It was starting to hurt, but that didn't mean he didn't want to touch Lucy's chest again. All his sacred rod needed was some practice, and he was sure it wouldn't hurt anymore.

Lucy gradually felt the heat from the pleasure in her body die down. It left her feeling wanting, like they weren't finished. But what else could there be besides that wonderful feeling?

"That was," she started. "That was amazing."

Natsu gave her one of his big grins.

"I know! Can we do it again soon?"

Lucy, much less fearful now that they had done what they did, happily nodded her head, smiling happily.

"If I had known that letting you touch my breasts would feel that good, I would've let you do it sooner. I just had to be sure I could trust you first."

"That's understandable. They're really soft, so I guess they are tender and easy to hurt, too."

Lucy nodded in agreement.

Natsu yawned as he felt his sacred rod finally go back to sleep. Sleep seemed like a good idea for him, too.

Grabbing Lucy and pulling them both back onto the bedding, he curled around her. He was happier and more comfortable than he had ever been before. As he began to drift off, he started to wonder about the other parts of Lucy's body that were different from his own. Would his sacred rod, and him as well, like those parts as much as her 'breasts'? Would it feel as good for Lucy if he touched them? He had only seen those parts once, back when he first captured her, but he was too freaked out by the fact that there was no sacred rod to do more than tive them a quick glance.

His last thoughts before falling into a content slumber were of asking Lucy to allow him to touch more of her body.

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Okay. First off, I would like to thank the many friends I have on this site. Their incredible support and encouragement over the past month is the only reason I'm making my stories publicly available again. ShanaHollows, quite-a-riot, Grizzly98, Morriganfae, HoneyWriter78, FlameDragonHime, and honestly far too many others to list. Some of which I still haven't had a chance to reply much to due to the shear volume of messages/review messages I've received and the limited amount of time I've had to go through them. My job currently has me working up to 16 hours per day, 7 days per week, outdoors in all weather, but that is the nature of my line of work. Sometimes I only have to work a few hours a couple of days per week. I'm currently cleaning up from major flooding. My house and family are fine, we are up on a hill, but other things like fencing and debris are a mess. I'm also situated upstream and didn't suffer like many people downstream, and none of my animals were harmed. It's honestly pretty amazing how fortunate we've been to sustain almost no damage in the worst flood in this area in fifty years, and I'm talking about an area that gets flooding nearly every spring, so calling it a major flood is a big deal.

On to the less happy part of this note. I have Asperger's and very high social anxiety. The flood of horrendous messages got to the point that I had more than one anxiety episode at just the sight of a new notification in my email of a new message from this site. It felt like playing Russian Roulette to open them. The common thread among most of the hate filled messages was that they took my dislike of things they like as a personal insult. That is beyond ridiculous. My husband loves motorcycles and I hate them. Oh, no! I must hate my husband. Smh. That's how logical that is. I've stated before that the ONLY reason I come to this fandom is for the nalu pairing, and that's it. I'm ambiguous about literally every other ship as long as nalu is together. I don't care if Laxas is paired with a donkey or Cana is paired with a beer keg and a squirrel. As long as nalu is together, I don't care what ships are present. I've also been accused of being anti-diversity because I don't like threesomes with Natsu and Lucy. Because I have a strong preference for a specific ship, that makes me anti-diversity? By that logic, everyone who likes straight pairings is homophobic or if someone likes a pairing where the couple are both the same race then they are racist. It's ridiculous. Especially with the way my family is. I'm mixed race, my father and step-mother were in an open marriage (which is a huge factor for why I have an aversion to threesomes), there is pretty much every religion and political leaning in us. My dad was a progressive atheist, one of my cousins is Wiccan, my step-mother is Catholic, and I could go on. I literally live diversity.

The very worst was the verbal abuse I received from a writer on here that I had deeply respected and admired. The things she said to me were reprehensible, and I honestly considered outing her on what she said. She blocked me on here, but I still have the emails that ff sends you for alerts, and they have the messages. I showed the messages to a few of my friends, and they were horrified that someone with such a clean and kind public image could say such things, especially when she purports to be anti-bullying and claims to never hate on people for different opinions. But I don't have it in me to out her. I'm not mean enough to destroy someone's image, and hurt them like that out of revenge.

Anyway, I'm reposting for my friends. If you like, then YAY! That makes me so happy! If you don't, kiss my butt.