Disclaimer: I don't own fairy tail.
Author's notes: Set in AU. I really want to write with a different Natsu, different from the usual cute heroic Natsu. He will be ooc, so will Lucy because of the story's nature. This is a what-if story where Lucy and Natsu met when they were young. Instead of Natsu in Fairy tail, he's in phantom lord. Gajeel will be in Fairy tail instead along all other current fairy tail members with the exception of Natsu.
Summary: A little fire dragon slayer saved Lucy from herself years ago when she was lost. Wanting to fulfill a promise, Lucy, years later known as a mage of fairy tail, endlessly searches for him, believing that they would meet. When they meet, the peace she had known was destroyed.
There was nothing but a young blonde child clutching her body, curled, as if trying to hide her own existence from the world. She was muddy and dirty, with light bites and scratches all over her arms and legs. Her feet were bare, with a combination of red and dark brown from the mud, and red from the wounds she got running barefooted. She was shaking all over, her eyes wide from shock. Tears occasionally leaked, her mouth chattering from the cold but also what brought her in this situation.
It was so painful. It was so tiring. She was so cold. She was wet, hurt, and hungry.
Wolves circled around her, looking at her with a hungry gaze, ready to lunge at its prey at any time, loving her traumatized form.
Was she finally going to die?
One of her eyes looked at the surrounding wolves. Their mouth watered, and looked as if they were enjoying her predicament.
A chill passed through her spine.
Was this what if felt like to die?
Did her mother feel this way when she was at Death's door?
The next thing she knew, she was screaming, one had latched itself onto her, its mouth on her leg. She tried to hit it but her arms were weak, feeble, and shaking.
It hurts. It hurts. It hurts. It hurts.
Her hands erratically searched for something to hit. As if luck was with her side, her hands found something hard, thin, and long; an arrow. Not even hesitating, she used it to stab the wolf.
The one biting her leg weakened, falling down, another bite mark was there, bleeding.
I hate this. I don't want to die here!
With all the strength she could muster, she ignored her bad leg, her already tired body and tried to run.
Three seconds passed. And then…
Another one tackled her small body sending her spiraling on the ground. It growled at her, looking at her face, savoring her would-be last expression before they eat her.
She heard nothing but the sound of her own shaky breathing and her heartbeat.
Time never went slow for her as it did then.
There was the sound of the other wolves moving closer to her, ready to feast on her. In a last attempt to protect herself, as hopeless the gesture it may be, she clenched her eyes shut, tears falling as she moved her arms to cover herself.
Someone, anyone, save me!
Then the world turned black.
Her next memories were vague.
She felt as if she was being carried by someone, a body that's small yet so strong. It was so warm and gentle that she felt no chill, only that she wanted to savor the moment.
She tried to open her eyes only to see a blurry figure of pink. She could see no more because the pain was too deep and the world once again, turned black.
Her next memory of waking up was somewhere dark. It felt like was lying somewhere hard and rough like soil but there was also a slight comfort of laying her head on something cottony on her head. Her body was covered by a worn-out blanket.
She let out a groan of pain as she tried to open her eyes.
"Don't move. You'll make it hurt worse." The voice was definitely a boy's.
She could feel warm hands trying to make sure she lie down and not move. She could hear shuffles, him moving around and about.
Softly and gently, as if she would break, a warm hand tried to raise her to a sitting position.
"Eat this; it'll make you feel better."
Something warm slipped her mouth. Soup.
She was being fed. He must have noticed she was incapable of moving.
Does this mean I'm alive?
The feeling of food, entering her body was such bliss that she didn't care how much her body hurt. It felt so soothing, whoever this guy was, take such good care of her, like when her mother was still alive.
Those thoughts brought a fresh set of tears of her eyes. She tried to hold it in, but couldn't.
That's right. Her mother… was dead and it was all her fault.
"What's wrong?" there was a soft clank as he stopped feeding her. The next thing she felt was warm arms wrapping around her so gently, he patted her back and hummed softly like a mother would to comfort a child.
"Igneel told me that if you're sad, this makes you feel better." The small act of affection made the tears fall, not of sadness or relief but because of a sensation she thought she'd never experience again.
She tried to raise her arms to hug him back only that she couldn't move them. Noticing this, he laid her down, forcing her arms at her hands at her side.
"Don't. You'll bleed. You have to rest."
She tried to open her mouth to speak, only to give out weak coughs.
"You're weird. I told you to rest."
Still, she wanted to say it, the words.
"Tt-thank-k yy-you" her voice was weak and croaky.
She felt something soothing her forehead.
"You're welcome. Now, sleep."
Those were the last things she heard before falling asleep. It was probably the first time she was able to sleep peacefully since her mother died.
Her next set of memories were also blurry.
She would wake up for a short while but always ended up sleeping and forgetting what transpired most of them.
All she knew was, she was being cared for, like she was loved.
Pink. His hair was pink. His eyes from what she could remember were intense, onyx and slanted. It briefly reminded her of dragons.
This time, her mind was sound clear when she woke up. Her body still hurt but it was tolerable. She tested her body, clenching and unclenching her hands. She tried to stand, only to notice it took a lot of effort. She was already huffing by the time she was standing.
There were bandages on her arms and legs making it hard for her to move. Her eyes looked around, only to discover she was in a forest clearing. She had been lying on the grassy ground, there was an old brown blanket pooled around her feet, probably what was used to cover her body. There was the scent of burned wood, evidence seen as there was a burned out fireplace used. There were some used utensils around evidence that someone had been living here. She still had her old clothes though it strangely felt cleaner.
"Oh, you're awake! That's great! But you shouldn't be moving around, you're still hurt." A new voice made her eep.
In front of her, was a boy with wild pink hair, his eyes were of an intense onyx color and slanted like a dragon's. He had a red shirt and shorts, with a white scaly scarf around his neck and was barefooted.
She took a step back, like a scared rabbit ready to take off any minute.
"You're kinda weird but Igneel always told me girls are something not meant to be understood." He had a wide grin on his face as he spoke. In his arms were- was that a dead dear?
Seeing her wide expression, ha gave a wild laughter. "You were wondering about this? It's what we'll be having for today." He said as he went around laying the carcasses deer, and took some firewood, to start the fire.
When he noticed her still not moving figure, he gave another pair of laughter ringing in the wind. "What are you doing? You're so weird."
The blond girl then proceeded to sit where she had been resting before covering most of her body with the old blanket, peeking at the pink haired guy with furrowed brows, eyeing him with both suspicion and shyness.
"Don't worry, I don't eat bunny girls!" to her surprise he opened his mouth and out, fire came out to torch the wood.
Her mouth opened wide in wonder. He's the one who was weird not her!
"I'm not bunny girl!" she tried to glare at him but would proceed to hide herself in the blankets when he as much looked at her.
The boy then, proceeded to take the pot filled with water to the fireplace.
"Well I don't know your name but yours sound like a bunny!"
The girl puffed her cheeks at the words, insulted.
"My name is Lucy! Don't forget it!" She then coughed out, one of hands on her chest, finding it hard to shout.
"I told you to rest didn't I? Geez, you sure don't know how to listen don't you?"
The girl continued to cough for a while. Next thing she knew, the kid was patting her back as he placed his other hand unto one of her shoulders to steady her.
"It's fine as long as you rest Luigi" He covered her with the blanket.
"I'm Natsu by the way." He introduced himself. "Lucy" pouted at the name he called her with.
He rolled his eyes. "Okay, Lucy?" The girl suddenly gave a small yet shy smile at that, appreciating that he called her by her name.
Lucy gazed at the sky while he worked, cooking the deer. Were they really going to eat that? Shaking her head at those thoughts, she decided to think of getting one question she wanted to be answered the most. She had a lot of questions for him like why he was here. What is he? But Lucy really wanted to know was something entirely different. Gathering her courage, she finally decided to ask.
Natsu stopped whatever he was doing to look at her.
"Well, I was searching for food, and then I heard someone screaming… then I saw you about to be eaten by those wolves."
"So… you saved me?" she her face redden, embarrassed at the situation she found herself in but at the same time thankful he helped her.
"Of course, I wasn't just going to let someone be eaten in front of me now would I?"
"B-but there were a lot of them, did you beat them all?" she asked in wonder.
"Of course I did! I'm a fire dragon slayer you know. I'm strong." He gave a proud huff at those words, showing one of his feeble arms as if it had some big sturdy muscles.
"Fire dragon slayer? What's that?"
"You must be really out of it if you don't know what it is. If you must know, it's a fire dragon magic taught to me by Igneel!"
"Igneel, who's that?"
Natsu then proceeded to sit by her side, in an Indian sit style as he told her about himself. By talking, Lucy learned he was a mage, a fire dragon slayer mage. He was taught by Igneel, a real fire dragon. Being young as she was, she didn't find it hard to believe. When she tried to ask where he was, Natsu's usual happy face became a little sad.
"He disappeared suddenly… But I'm going to find him." like magic, his expression suddenly changed to a happy one as if saying, he was fine.
A peaceful silence passed after that.
"I wish I was like you Natsu, strong. But I'm only weak and stupid." Lucy looked sadly.
Natsy gave her head a HARD pat. Lucy let out an "ouch" as rubbed her head.
"If you're weak, then all you have to do is become strong!"
"That's impossible for someone like me." She was then hit with memories that almost made her want to cry all over again.
"It is possible! If you're weak, I'll help you become strong!"
"Help me be strong? Huh?" she looked at the boy with a sad expression at that. Brief flashes of what led her to this situation came back flooding.
"Lucy…" the loving blooded figure of her mother hugged her as she fell on top of her daughter, trying to protect the girl.
"I've no daughter! My wife and daughter are both dead!"
"Get her out of my sight."
"What if I'm not strong enough?" she asked; her eyes close to tearing up.
He gave a tsk at that. "Then if you're not strong enough, I'll just hafta protect you 'till you get strong enough!"
Her eyes widened at that. Her tears, stopped instantly.
"You're such a crybaby, a girl, and a weirdo so I'll protect you until you can become strong. And here." He took his scarf and the decided to wrap it around her neck instead.
"This?"Lucy fingered the soft, scaly scarf, hiccupping.
"Yeah, this has strong magic that protects the wearer. It was my father's last memento. But I'm strong now so I'm lending it to you so it'll protect you, got it? So you gotta take good care of it, understand?"
"I-I can't take this. This is something very precious to you right? It's what you have of memory of your father."
"Why are you so stubborn? Accept it, okay? I told you before; I'm strong so I don't need it for now. You need it more than I do. You'll be giving it back. It's only temporary until you become strong. I don't mind lending it to you. Friends lend stuff, right?"
"But we just met, why would you give away something so important to you?"
"Lots of reasons. One's a secret. Second. I've been taking care of you for a while now so I'm responsible for you! Third, we're friends and you're important to me."
"I'll… I'll promise then! I'll become strong. When I do, I can give this back!" tears cascaded down. It had been quite some time since she last heard someone say such things to her, and it was from a not-so-stranger- anymore.
"You sure cry a lot! Okay, that's a promise then!" Natsu laughed.
The next weeks were blissful days that Lucy thought she would never experience again. Natsu teased her a lot, made her angry a lot but, he always found ways to change whatever frown she had into smiles and laughter. More often than not, he did it with ease, her not even noticing how he did it. The only thing she knew; she was mad, the next thing she knew, she was smiling. He was childish. His antics either amused her or got her mad.
They practically knew each other like the back of their hand. She knew what made him tick, what made him happy, what drives him to go crazy, and what made him sad or angry.
Despite how Natsu acted, Lucy admired him. As childish he was, he knew how to take care of himself, well of them. He could cook, hunt, and knew a good shelter when needed. As strange as it sounded, the little dragon also knew laundry though that particular skill needed a little help since he's so prone to fire.
"Ehhhhhh! So you're actually a mage too. That's amazing! What magic do you use?" Natsu looked at the blonde child in admiration.
"I use stellar spirit magic."
"Wait-if you could use magic, why didn't you just use magic to get rid of those wolves?"
The two were just chatting, as Natsu was cooking up a bear stew. Lucy was sitting on a log by his side, watching him cook.
Lucy shook her head at that.
"I was too tired to fight at that time. If I tried to summon, it was the same as dying. Celestial magic requires a lot of magic in order to use. I had already used up a lot of magic by then."
"Well, now that you're with me you'll definitely be alright." Natsu said confidently.
Lucy just smiled happily at his words.
"So today, we're having bear soup?"
"You have to teach me sometime how to cook these, Natsu."
"Sure, I will!"
A peaceful routine rolled in the night as the two laughed chatting about whatnot enjoying basking the other's presence. Little did they know, it would be the last night they had with one another.
AN: I have no idea how scenes of Natsu cooking got here. It just ended up this way. It sounds completely crazy. I wasn't planning on it ending up this way. Supposedly, this was supposed to be written as one shot. From the way everything is going, it might end up with the probability of 3-5 not, it might end up extending. I hope it doesn't fall that way. I originally planned this to be short, not long. Forgive me for making the characters ooc. In this chapter Natsu is still the lovable everyone knows with a couple of changes. I just had it in my head the little furball knows how to cook despite being Natsu the way he is but… that'll change. Please look forward to the next chapters!
All done in a day! How did it go? Was it to your liking? Like or no like? Suggestions, comments, and critiques are all welcome.