Disclaimer: I do not own Fairy Tail or any of it's characters.
Warning(s):Genderbent Natsu. Possible OOCness. AU. Violence/Swearing/ possible instances of other suggestive and adult themes.(With mages and dragons, you never know.) Different magic!Natsu. Stronger-than-canon!Natsu. Smarter!Natsu. Possible instances of fluff. Possible Darker!Natsu.
Don't expect the same kind of Natsu as a result of everything that's happened. Also for anyone wondering Mercuphobia is a character from the 100 year manga, I didn't create him. And it's not that I'm really a big fan of the latest volumes but I just really like having new characters to mess around with!x3
From Black to Blue
Experience: the most brutal teacher of all. But you learn, by God, do you learn.
The world was as unforgiving as it was unfair, and to young Natsumi this lesson was made all too clear upon her untimely death.
She used to love dragons. They fascinated her. At night she dreamt of flying with them, soaring over big, white, puffy clouds and gazing at the expanse the world had to offer.
That was before she felt the burn of their flames, before she saw the cruel nothingness reflected in their eyes as a pair of sharp talons impaled her mother and father. She tried hard to be a good girl like her parents had wanted, did her best not to deliberately upset anyone and still...despite her very best attempts, the dragons chose to kill her; they chose her home as one worth destroying, or maybe they just didn't care as much as she once thought.
Back when she was young and woefully ignorant on how things worked, she deemed them as misunderstood creatures who she was certain can't all be bad, as she told her brother once.
How wrong she was.
Something bitter settled in her once pure heart, growing and festering while she slept in the revival pod her brother constructed.
Upon opening her eyes for the first time, Natsumi did not feel as relieved as she maybe should have at finding out she was alive. No, instead she was consumed by bitterness, the cold and unforgiving grip of hate fastening around her heart like a vice.
Hate for the life now lost to her.
Hate for losing her parents.
Hate because of what her brother had become.
And most of all, hate for her lost humanity.
Zeref noted the warmth was gone from her eyes, but he paid no heed, basking in the joy of being reunited with his only sibling. He was unaware of the cold hatred that had taken root, oblivious to the wrath that stemmed from her encounter with the dragons.
Despite her ordeal, Natsumi tried to be good; do good. She kept telling herself that, so whenever that creeping feeling of utter blackness appeared, she would be able to overcome it, pushing it farther and farther into a place where no one would ever have to suffer from it.
That all changed, however, with the arrival of her.
She was pure: her hair like a flowing river of gold with wide, innocent jade-green eyes and a smile that made Natsumi's heart ache for her mother. Especially, whenever it was directed at her brother.
Even so, she pushed the growing pit of anxiety deeper and deeper, desperate to curb her own growing fears. So long as she had her brother, so long as she held onto that last thin thread of hope-all would be well, eventually.
Until it wasn't.
Until her own brother, her only living family had not even recognized the girl she had become, and instead focused on mourning the now deceased Mavis, or so she thought she heard the bearded man whisper.
Zeref turned to leave, and he saw her standing there.
His words pierced her heart:
"I don't need love. I don't need anyone. I was better off just playing my game." His eyes, which once held such overflowing kindness and gentleness to them were now hollow and cold and oh so very red like the blood they share.
"Move," he commanded.
She did so without a fuss. The small pieces she had left of her heart slowly cracking when his shoulder brushed hers. He left without looking back that day, unaware of what he had just done.
The thread holding her together snapped.
Her brother was gone. The man from earlier-Purehito or something-was gone as well, too busy mourning over Mavis. No one stopped for her.
She was alone. Always alone.
For a long time she'd forget the sting, the heartache of what it meant to feel. Having managed to chip away at the frozen remnants of her heart, it turned into something much stronger and more reliable.
Cold winds no longer phased her but rather bent around her as though recoiling at the intense hellfire that was now her soul, burning with sinister intent. Her molten gold eyes shone with a cruelty far too great for even the worst of demons, and she relished the words of fear spoken about her, comparing her to only the worst of the worst.
Rumors spread faster than those of even Zeref, telling of a demon whose name signified the end of everything. It fit her quite nicely really, the name given by her brother.
For a time, she felt invincible, like nothing could stop her despite what the hollow ache in her chest suggested
"There is a sadness in your eyes."
His eyes were fire in water, if one could imagine such a thing. They were passion in ice. They were the ocean. The blue-green hue carried his emotions, letting it shine for any passerby to see.
She blinked, a bit taken aback when a second passed. His eyes were glittering gold, much like her own, only calmer.
His hair went a little past shoulder-length. They glinted from the rays of sun peeking through the trees, making the strands of deep, glacial blue shine beautifully, and look like moving currents of the sea. A strange looking tattoo covered the side of his face where one of his eyes was showing, and he wore such strange clothes.
"Who are you? What do you want?" she asked, waspishly. If he was offended by it, then she couldn't tell.
"My name is Mercuphobia. I was just passing through."
She tried hard not to give in to the strangely soothing effect his voice had on her, His voice doused the flames of anger she kept burning inside her for so long with ease. He tilted his head a moment later, staring on in silence before she broke it.
"Then leave!" Her words are harsh, tinged with annoyance at this...this weird person!
A sneer twisted her pretty face a moment later, regarding him coldly. "Unless you wish for a dragon to find you? A wimpy, little thing like you. Bet you won't even last ten minutes." She wanted to see fear reflected in those calm eyes, but instead is met with calm defiance.
"I do not fear the dragons on this continent or any other."
They stare at one another. Natsumi was about to turn and walk off, opting to leave him to stew in whatever delusional stupidity it was that had a hold on him. She stopped suddenly, a familiar sound ringing through her ears, making the trees bend and snap around them, the earth splitting open.
It was the roar of a dragon.
She stared up at its huge form towering up above, symbolizing the vast difference in power between them and sending a rush of ice through her veins as she is forced to remember-
I don't need love. I don't need anyone. I was better off just playing my game.
-she doesn't realize she is crying until arms are wrapping around her, pulling her close. Blinking a few long moments later, she realized the dragon is dead and dealt with, and she wasn't able to lift a finger. She looked up slowly to see Mercuphobia standing before her.
The scent of ocean flowers and rolling tides wrapped her in its embrace like a much-needed security blanket.
For the first time she felt safe and wanted and not so alone after all.
Blackness overtook her, the fatigue of her long battles and inner struggles finally taking their toll. Only it wasn't nearly as frightening now that someone was actually beside her, standing close enough to catch her as she fell. A trickle of emotion is felt, evaporating as quickly as it came.
The ice around her heart thawed a little.