Hello, readers. NeoShadows back with another fresh chapter of A Time Before Fairy Tails.

Man, I'm kinda glad summer is about to be over. I actually missed school. Weird, that place was hell. But I'm going to be a senior, even though I should of graduated a year ago, stupid first grade, and I'll be graduating by the end of this the school year. Which means I'll have to fight with going to culinary arts school or college.

I'm dreading that the most. At least I got my writing to fill the time.

I think I was going into fangirl mode again while I was writing my Author's Note to the last chapter of The Story of a Dragon, a Knight, and a Fairy Hunter. Dude, I should not write before I got to sleep while still riding on the end of a sugar rush. Makes me too giddy for my tastes.

The point being is don't fangirl over anything. Especially Fairy Tail. Turns you into crazy Nalu fans. I really want to meet a sane fan. Besides the one's that write harems with Lucy in them. To which I might write one day. Lucy is hot and sexy. No denying that. Me likey.

So, for all those who have to go back to school, whether its middle, high, or college, good luck. Because we're all going to need it.

Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to Fairy Tail. Hiro Mashima is the proud creator. Did you know he actually dropped out of arts school because he couldn't take how they taught drawing? That, is one lucky bastard. Not that many people come out big when they drop out of school. Only the ones with luck and talent make it by. So stay in school! We're all sadly not Hiro Mashimas.

Chapter 6: A Western Tale of Cowboys and Mages.

It was early morning when Natsu and Levy went out for their first mission in Lupinus.

Luckily for them they had found a mission request board in the center of the town near a hotel they could stay at for the remainder of their stay. The request board was special seeing as anybody could do the missions. You didn't have to be a mage to take on the requests, but it did help with some of the work they had to do. It was almost like it was made for independent mages like themselves. Being close to an affordable hotel was also a bonus.

Looking over the few missions that they could do without Natsu causing any sort of trouble, or destruction, Levy quickly found a nice one that paid well enough an didn't seem to involve any strings attached.

All they were to do was help some local farmer with his grape harvest. Nothing dangerous about that. And the mission paid 10,000 Jewels. It was perfect!

What could go wrong?

"I hate this job! So help me, I'm going roast these grapes and shove them up that old fart's dairy air!"

Levy almost sighed. She had forgotten Natsu was also on the job. And he was a kid of action. Not grape picking.

Right now they were currently picking the last of the grapes from the farmers vine garden and carefully setting them into their straw woven baskets. The garden was big. Even for a grown adult. But for kids like themselves who were only ten years old and mages, it was a small feet in itself seeing as it was only an acre of land. Thankfully they didn't need to pick every grape in the garden, that would take them all day.

Actually, now that Levy thought about it, she really didn't know how old Natsu was. She tried asking him only to get a confused look back saying he didn't know. Said he didn't care about small stuff such as age, which she had to sweatdrop at. He said he thought he was eight, then ten, and then eighty of all things! Just thinking about it confused even her.

Though she couldn't really blame him for not knowing his age seeing as he was raised by a dragon. Maybe dragons didn't age at all, making it pointless to keep track of age. That would explain why Natsu had no idea of his age. She couldn't really think of a reason seeing as she had no clue to the way dragons think and Natsu wasn't any help in that department either. Whatever his foster father taught him about dragons must have been lost in that small headed head of his and only paid attention to the cool parts dealing with his Dragon Slayer magic.

So age was a mystery with Natsu. Though Levy could make a guess and say he seemed to be ten, maybe eleven with his physique. She sighed though as it also brought up the question on his date of birth, another mystery he didn't seem to have the answer for.

For now though, she wouldn't question her new friend. He seemed fine just the way he was without knowing anything about his age or date of birth. They would come to the matter when it was most important.

Right now they needed to focus on carrying the baskets of grapes back to the farm. Which lead to their current little dilemma.

"There is now way in hell that I'm even stepping foot on that-that THING!"

Well, for Natsu at least, it was dilemma.

Funny little thing Levy learned that past month traveling with the fire breather, he did not like transportation. And for very good reason.

Natsu suffered from a sever case of Kinetosis. Also known as motion sickness. His only Achilles heel. The bane of his existence.

Levy lightly patted the sweating, nervous, fire mage as they stood before the hulking monster of metal and steam, also known as a train. A steam train to be exact. It was the only way back to the farm and luckily the train ran along the acre of land to Lupinus.

The farmer owned an acre of land that he had told them he won in a poker game with a chicken. No, he wasn't kidding. The old man actually played a chicken for an acre of land in a game of Texas hold 'em and won. Never mind the fact he was crazy enough to play a chicken in cards, the damn chicken actually owned a plot of land and had the deed to said land! Levy was seriously considering bailing out on the mission if she was working with a man who seemed to think he was sane for playing a chicken for a land.

Turns out said chicken was a mage who practiced Transformation magic and thought he could get a few laughs out playing a crazy old man. The tables turned though and the mage lost his small plot of land. Made sense. Though that also brought the question on how could anyone play poker as a chicken even if they were a mage.

The only downside to winning the land was that it was on the edge of Lupinus's borders. It was a twenty minute ride by train, so that was a blessing for the old man. But it was still a hassle for him in his age and having to walk from his farm with his baskets to the train station, waiting for the train to arrive, getting off and picking the right amount of grapes for his stock at home in the hot sun, and then coming back from the train station only to have to walk back to his home was too much for him. And there was no way he was giving up on the land he won! He won it from a chicken and it was very fertile. He knew he was a bit off, but even he wasn't insane enough to give the land up.

So, in the end, the old man decided to send out a mission request for anyone to help him harvest his precious grapes. There was a catch though. The grape garden was very fertile and his grapes were the juiciest of all of Lupinus. Wild animals and the occasional monster were bound to come sniffing around for his garden of fruit. It didn't happen often seeing as he had paid some Jewels to a powerful mage specializing in warding magic to keep a small barrier around the garden, but the barrier would fluctuate without its caster around and allow some animals and monster to pass by from time to time.

Not many would take the request, only the occasional mage hoping to make a few Jewels would accept the mission. Lucky for them they were able to finish the mission without encountering any threats.

Another reason for Natsu to be upset, besides having to take two train rides in one day for lousy grapes. He didn't care if the old man did make them some of Lupinus's famous grape jelly for free and a bonus in their reward! He wanted action and now he was going to be busying trying his best to hold back his lunch for half an hour.

Natsu groaned as he helped Levy load the twelve barrels of grapes into the loading trailer of the train. Thankfully enough the barrels came with low leveled anti-gravity lacrima embedded under the barrels to make them light enough to push on their cart. Not to mention the nice train guy helping them out.

"Thank you, Bento-san." Levy smiled at the train employee who blushed in embarrassment.

"Ah, it was nothing!" he grinned as he lifted his hat at the little girl.

Bento was your average looking twenty year-old guy. Well, he would be if it wasn't for his odd nose. It was a bulbous nose. He had short black hair and plain black eye's, dressed in the usual train employee's uniform and hat. He worked in helping the passengers with any of their needs and was even studying under the train conductor. He was actually learning about the steam engine of the train before he caught eye of the two young kids trying to load some heavy looking barrels into the storage trailer.

Doing the manly thing, Bento quickly excused himself and promised to come right back before going to help the two kids with their barrels.

Lifting the last barrel into storage Natsu reigned in his wits before facing the ultimate evil facing him dead on.

"I-I'm n-not a-a-afraid of y-you!" he shot his trembling finger at the iron, steam breathing, behemoth, his eye's shaking with false courage. "I-I-I've faced bigger m-monsters then y-y-you!"

"That's a lie." Levy looked on flatly next to the sweatdropping train worker, "He hasn't fought anything bigger then a train. Nothing that close. Unless you count sparring with a dragon." she stopped to think as Bento's jaw dropped.

"A dragon!? How can you say that with a straight face!?"

"Well, I give up." Natsu firmly nodded his head, turning away from the train as he began to make his way through the tracks, "We tried, but we failed. Sorry, Levy."

"You're not going anywhere, Natsu." Levy said plainly, already walking through the open door to their seats with a blinking Natsu in her grip.

"Dammit! I was so close!"

"You really weren't." deadpanned Bento as he closed the doors before making his way to the train conductors room. What an odd pair of kids.

Finding their seat number marked on their tickets, Levy carried the now sickly green Dragon Slayer on her back before setting him next to her seat. He groaned, his cheeks puffing up in attempt to hold back the bile. She really did feel sorry for her friend. Had to feel terrible when the even the thought of transportation made his stomach sick. The train hadn't even moved yet and already he was out of commission.

Well, they had half an hour to themselves before they arrived, and Natsu wasn't very talkative with his motion sickness, looked like she finally had some free reading time.

Quickly rummaging through her traveling pack, the blue haired missed the presence standing next to their seats.

"Excuse me, little girl."

"Huh?" Levy's head shot up to the owner of the voice as she noticed the man standing besides the seats they sat.

He was a vibrant red headed man with long, smooth, spiky hair that ran down his waist. He wore black fedora hat, decorated with a blue cross on the fedora's black and white criss-cross belt. His brown eye's looked sheepish as he rubbed the back of his head as he held a train ticket in his left hand.

"I'm sorry, but I don't mean to be a bother," he laughed nervously, noticing the pink haired boy fall over his seat, nearly losing his lunch as he sweatdropped, "But is the seat across from you two taken by your parents?"

Levy shook her head, "No, we don't really have parents." Now it was her turn to laugh in embarrassment, "We're orphans."

"Ooooh, sorry about that." the man smiled in apology before taking a seat across the two kids, carefully moving his feet over the gurgling boy on the ground. Was it him, or was that puddle near his mouth drool or vomit?

"Is he going to be okay?"

"He'll live. . .I think." Levy reached for the collar of her friend before setting him down next to her, moving his pack from his back to act as a pillow as she laid him down.

Looking back at the man sitting across from them Levy noticed the man dressed like some odd priests clothing. While a usual priest wore long robs reaching down to their ankles, the man's seemed to of been cut off from his waist by a rugged knife, allowing him to wear black dress pants. His top half of his robes had lightning blue lining and crosses decorated the sash trying to hide the knife edges.

"Are you priest,-"

"Percival, Percival Grail, and no, I'm not much of a holy man despite the name." Percival laughed sheepishly as he adjusted his traveling pack, catching Levy's attention.

"I'm much more of a traveling merchant, you could even call me a low leveled sage."

"A sage?"

"Yes." the red head nodded as he smiled, "I use to train under monks as a very young child. They took me in when I was just an orphan, just like you two, after my hometown was ransacked by Zeref worshipers. I studied under them and learned many things about the world through their teachings, but I just wasn't cut out for being much of a monk." he scratched his cheek in embarrassment, "I guess I can't help but dress up as a priest seeing as they're both pretty close to one another, and their clothes are pretty comfortable."

"So you travel around selling merchandise?" Levy asked as she could see some items poking out of his large pack. How was he able to sit with that thing over his back?

Percival's eye's seemed to lite up at the question before moving his back before them, "Yup! I sell whatever I find on my journey's and whatever things that may help one out when their of need of holy service!" he grinned as he opened up his pack to show off random items he somehow was able to stuff within, "Cleansing tags, charms, holy water, some candy I found on the road-"

"R-Road candy?" Levy sweatdropped. Did he mean he found them while he was on the road, or did he literally mean he found them lying on the dirty road?

"Holy copied manuscripts, golden, silver, crosses, some toys for the kiddies." he smiled as he waved a balloon animal of a wyvern in front of the groaning pink haired boy.

"Here, you can have it for free to cheer you up, little guy!"

Natsu twitched as he could feel the train run along some damaged tracks, the slight bump nearly making him lose his lunch as released a small flaming burp in the form of a fireball at the odd toy in his face.

The red haired merchant blinked as he now held the end of deflated, burning balloon animal in his hands before taking out a small bottle of holy water and putting out the flames with a flat look directed at the small blue haired girl.

"What did this boy eat? Must of been really, really, really, spicy for him to be breathing fire like that."

Levy laughed nervously as she patted Natsu's back. She really hoped that the train would make it to town early, or the train would be burned down before they were half way there.

"It's part of his magic."

"Magic?" Percival tilted his head in confusion before realization dawned on him, "Oooooh, you're both mages, or is he the only one?"

Levy nodded her head, "Yes, we're both independent mages. We're kinda on a mission besides the one we're doing now."

"Really, what is it?" he asked only for the little girl to shake her head with an apologetic smile.

"Sorry, but that isn't for me to say. Natsu's the one you would ask, but he isn't feeling too well and I'm not sure if I have the right to say what it is." She wasn't sure if it was alright for them to be telling everyone that asked that they were looking for a dragon. Not many would believe them and some would mock them. Though who would mock two innocent children for looking for a dragon? They'd have to be some heartless bastards.

Percival nodded his head in understanding, "Don't worry, it's none of my business. I have no right prying into children's business, but!" he loudly exclaimed, scaring Levy before taking out a bottle of clear, sparkly water for her to see, "Might I suggest buying a bottle of Holy water? You never know when you might come across a demon."

"That glass's half empty!"

". . .You never know when you might come across half a demon."

Was this really a sage? All the small bookworm knew was that it was going to be a long thirty minutes.

"S-Somebody, s-stop this b-bastard before I-Blegh!"

"Aww, sick! It's smells like fish! I don't think I have anything here to save this boy. May Kami rest this poor soul and take him into his loving hands."

Oh, yeah. It was going to be a long ride back to Lupinus. There went her peaceful reading time.

Once they had delivered the large barrels of grapes, Levy felt content as they now walked away from the mission with ten thousand Jewels and an extra five thousand bonus, not to mention five jars of Lupinus Grand Jelly in their traveling pack. Apparently you couldn't find jelly this fine anywhere else in Fiore, you'd be lucky if you could purchase one under fifteen thousand Jewels, which now that she thought about was how much they were paid for the mission. She shook her head with a smile not wanting to let any ill thoughts ruin her happy mood as they went out for something to eat.

"I'm feeling like ramen. I think we need to find a ramen shop. Do you guy's like ramen? I love ramen. You know what, I don't care anymore, we're going out for ramen. End of story."

Levy twitched, her smile slightly faltering as she almost forgot who was joining them on their dinner outing.

"Who the hell are you again?" Natsu tilted his head in confusion as he smacked the head of the odd red haired man carrying them on his shoulders to find something to eat.

Percival wagged his finger at the foul mouthed boy, tsking with a disappointed look, "Now, now, young one, Kami looks down on those who curse. As one of the holy testaments say's, Ye shall not curse thy name, or something like that." he shook his hand absently with a bored look as Levy sweatdropped.

"And you studied under monks?"

Natsu still didn't understand what was going on. A while after he had woken up from his nightmare ride on the devil that was known as a train, he found himself on the shoulder of the man who was carrying them right now. From what Levy had said he couldn't move a finger without nearly losing his lunch, so the guy, Percival, had offered to help her out and carry him to the farm. Seeing no other choice since they had to be there by seven or no pay she thanked the traveling sage for helping her out.

Of course they, or more like Levy, had offered to repay the nice man anyway they could, to which he took the offer up on without missing a beat. For a holy man he wasn't so humble.

Natsu glared at the happily grinning man. He wasn't a child, goddammit! He was a Dragon Slayer! Not some little kid you could carry on your shoulder! And what the hell was ramen!? It probably didn't even taste any good.

Percival abruptly stopped in his tracks with wide eye's, nearly knocking the little kids riding on his shoulders off. Confused, Natsu was ready shout at the odd man before shivering at the ominous glowing white eye's of the holy man staring back at him like he was peering through his soul.

"My ramen senses are tingling. There is a lost lamb who dares question the almighty power that is ramen." he said in a ominous tone that chilled the two's spine.

"I-It's not that, Percival-san!" Levy waved her hands in panic as she tried to calm the man down, "We've just never had ramen before!"

"Oh?" Percival suddenly grinned, the dark, chilling aura that flowed from him vanishing in an instant as he couldn't stop the cheery grin splitting his face before making haste to the nearest ramen stand he could track with his nose. "Then you guy's haven't lived till you've at least had some Miso ramen! They even have shrimp ramen for seafood lovers like Natsu! I'll even pay!" he cheered, before blinking and looking at Levy with flat eye's.

"By the way, can I borrow a few hundred Jewels? I'll pay ya later."

"Some sage you are." Natsu mumbled. He actually had no idea what a sage was, but whatever it was, this guy wasn't it. Had a few too many knocks to the head to be sane.

"But I'm not a sage. I'm a super, awesome, dashing, traveling merchant sage/priest! There's a big difference." the red head nodded his head firmly before spotting a decent looking stand selling noodles. He grinned, already charging through anyone in his way to the heavenly broth of pasta goodness.

"One large bowl of Pork Ramen and two medium sized bowls of Shrimp Ramen! And make it snappy! You don't want to feel a holy man's wrath!" Not even caring that he had knocked two paying customers off from their seats, Percival didn't waste any time in ordering the two little mages and himself dinner.

The owner of the shop had a sweat drop running down his forehead at the odd priest looking man's straight out order. Did he not just see he was taking the nice couples order before he pushed them down to the floor? And what was with the dark aura flowing from his body? Wasn't he a holy man?

His glare was scaring him though. It was like he was being stared down by a hungry demon licking its sharp, deadly teeth in anticipation. With a shaking nod the owner quickly took the man's orders, running off to the back of his stand to finish the noodles as if his life was on the line.

Nervously apologizing to the leaving couple they took their seats from, Levy sent a disappointed look back at the happily whistling red head.

"That was very rude, Percival-san."

Percival shrugged his shoulder's, "They had better options to eat from then this dump."

"Then why are we eating here?"

"I never said we had better options."

Natsu's nose soon picked up the odd smell coming from the back, "Something actually smells good. Weird, seeing as this place kinda looks like a dump." he looked around the stand to notice that it was made up of a slightly beaten up shack. It really wasn't much of a stand to begin with. The the stalls were old and the paint was chipped. He was even sure that the roof over their heads was creaking.

"Never judge a book by its cover, Natsu-kun." Percival wisely nodded just as their ramen arrived, courtesy of the nervously sweating chef.

"Now, lets dig in!"

Poking at the broth of noodles Levy was nervous to try out the new food. Unlike Natsu who happily dug into his dinner she was slightly put off with trying something new. It smelled good, she couldn't deny that, and it was nicely presented with cuts of vegetables and large shrimp swimming in nice looking broth. But what if she didn't like it? She didn't want to be rude to Percival though since he was paying for the food.

Then again she was actually the one paying for the meal.

The redheaded merchant rolled his eye's at the indecisive blue haired bookworm with a sigh, "Just take a bite already, Levy-chan." he mumbled as he slurped a large amount of noodles, "Ya got to learn to live the moment. Stop analyzing everything and take a chance. Not everything is as complicated as it looks."

"Noodles are complicated?" Natsu blinked as he swallowed the last of the broth, frowning in disappointment before demanding another bowl from the owner.

"Of course!" Percival smirked with a twinkle in his eye, "If you don't get the right temperature of the water correct, the noodles won't taste well. And just the right cut of pork is needed in pork ramen. Not to mention you have to soften the vegetables just right that it doesn't taste too crunchy or too soft. The wonders of ramen are beyond even my holy eye's. Only Kami has the wisdom to create perfect ramen. That, and this random guy right here." his eye's shined as he pointed his finger at the chef arguing with Natsu.

"Fish does not belong in ramen! How many times do I have to shout that at you!" the chef yelled as he was stuck in a tug of war with the rose haired boy over a large bowl of ramen.

"Four hundred times! And what do you know!? Fish goes with everything!" Natsu growled, somehow taking out a fresh fish from his napsack to drop in his noodles.

"Nooooo! You are ruining my ramen!"

"Nooooo! You're ruining my ramen! I paid for it, so it's mine!"

Levy sweat dropped at the odd scene, but decided to ignore it and take a bite from her ramen. If she didn't eat it she was sure the so called sage would stare her down with his scary aura again.

"Sooooo, how's it taste?" Percival grinned widely as Levy bite down on a chopstick of noodles. He did raise an eyebrow at Natsu though. Did the little guy really knock out a full grown man with one punch? And did ramen really taste good with fish?

Levy smiled with a small blush on her face as she nodded at the odd man.

"Actually, it could use a bit more shrimp."

(Early Morning. Daylight Hotel.)

Yawning, Natsu rubbed his the sleepiness from his eye's as he got out of his bed. Last night they had gotten back to the hotel pretty late. That weirdo merchant, sage, priest, whatever he was, decided he wanted to hang out with them for a while and took them out to look around the many game stalls out at night before going off spouting about a train shipment of supplies he was suppose to deliver to some guys.

He really was a weird guy. He kept spouting weird mumbo jumbo about Kami yet he cursed like Igneel. He didn't know much about holy men seeing as Igneel only taught him the basics of religion, but Natsu was pretty sure they didn't curse and threaten other people with violence and a dark aura. Not to mention he kept trying to sell his crazy inventions and merchandise to them that didn't even work.

The Fire Dragon Slayer couldn't help the wide grin on his mouth as he slipped out three emerald colored candy balls from his scarf he had bought from the crazy man. Finally! A cure for motion sickness!

If they didn't work it didn't make much sense to buy something from him if he knew that his crap didn't work. But a boy could dream. And spend his hard earned money.

If Levy had known she would of kept him from buying from the scam artist of a sage.

He was going to have to try them out sometime later. When Levy wasn't looking. Maybe now he could feel how riding on a train felt like without throwing up his guts.

Looking around the room they rented for a couple of days Natsu couldn't help but frown. He still didn't understand why they couldn't camp out in the woods like they usually did. Camping out was fun! They could hunt for rabbits, deer, birds, and fish. Roast marshmallows on an open campfire and sleep under the stars. Get away from all the noise inside the town. And hunt down squirrels for fun.

He hated squirrels. With a burning passion. He still hadn't forgotten his run in with that family of stupid furry bastards when he had met Carol after his father had vanished. And camping out gave him the chance to hunt them down. He could of sworn that they followed him since he left Chisana Ki.

Though the room they were staying in wasn't bad compared to the outdoors. It wasn't that big, it was a common sized hotel room with nice furnishing. It had two twin beds and few cozy furniture. They couldn't really rent two separate rooms since it would cost them double the rent, so it was better that they rented a twined bed room. He didn't really see the need for that fancy stuff in the room, all they needed was a bed and a bathroom. That was actually something he found useful.

Before heading out into civilization, Natsu had never really seen a bathroom before. Igneel had taught him about them, but they didn't have one out in the mountain forests. They had. . .other means of using the restroom. Though waterfalls were awesome showers.

Moving around the room for his red coat, Natsu noticed that Levy seemed to still be asleep. He smiled softly at his new friend as he found his coat and put it on.

The last month with her had been the funnest he had ever had. Not that being with Igneel was never fun, but hanging around with someone his own age was something else. Now he wasn't so alone anymore. It still hurt not having his father around, but Levy made the pain seem almost bearable. She was even nice enough to go on a journey with him to find his father.

She didn't have a reason to go with him other then to help her only friend, so there was nothing in it for her. It didn't really make much sense when he thought about it. Just because she was his friend she was willing to leave her home town for him? Is that what friends really did?

Humans were so weird. Natsu scratched his head as he thought back to what Igneel had taught him about them.

Humans were greedy creatures. They didn't seem to care about anything other then their own progress. If something didn't belong to them then they would stop at nothing to till it was theirs. They loved power, money, and control. They'd burn down the very lands they lived on if it meant profit to them.

Arrogant, conniving, backstabbing, dirty minded, over confident, controlling, greedy, and even bigger monsters then monsters themselves. Those were only a few words Igneel had used to described the human race. And the great dragon had plenty more words to describe them. They were just too foul to use around his young, impressionable son.

Which made you think how he could still curse around him when he thought back to his other dragon brethren and how they were raising sons and daughters of their own.

But he hadn't said that all humans were bad.

Like dragons, there were bound to be more then a few bad ones that shunned the rest with how they acted. Not all humans were evil. Just like not all dragons were good.

Humans weren't just cancer cells on Earthland, they were life. And life was treasured.

They knew how to love, how to fight for what was right, how to care for the less fortunate, and how to protect others that weren't their own. While he could be bias with human kind at times, all Igneel needed to do was look upon the children and his belief in human kind would be restored. Children like his son were the ones that would determine the fate of their own kind.

Natsu had never really come up with his own opinion on humans. He actually never really considered himself to be one seeing as he was raised by a dragon and was a Dragon Slayer. Being able to convert you body to act as if it were a dragon didn't really seem humanly possible. Igneel had treated him as if he was his very own son despite the huge difference in body size, skin color, physical features, and race. So it was safe to say he never really saw himself as human.

But now, after all that he had learn these last two months since Igneel had vanished without a trace, he couldn't help but agree with his father.

Not all humans were evil. They were kind and did things without wanting anything back in return. You just had to sort through all the bad ones to find the good ones. Like Levy, Kosei, Carol, Ella, and even the weird merchant sage and Rune knight captain.

Friendship was still an odd thing to Natsu, but he was happy there was such a thing. Because now he had a few friends, even if Levy was the only one with him right now, and he wouldn't give them up for the world.

Peeking through the binds of the window, the young Dragon Slayer decided he'd go out for walk around the town. Levy needed her sleep, so he couldn't bring himself to wake her up. All night she had been scolding Percival for trying to sell off his merchandise to people at ridiculous prices, not to mention their grape picking mission which took all afternoon to finish. She deserved some sleep after the day she had.

His stomach was also grumbling, so a good stroll around the place sounded really good about now.

"Let's see. . ." Humming some old tune he heard Ella sing around her house when he stayed over, Natsu walked through the many food stands surrounding the town trying to find something to eat.

Fish was great, it was his favorite thing to eat, but some variety was always good from time to time.

There was just so many stands! He hadn't seen so many stands since the festival back at Chisana Ki. And that was only to celebrate saving all the girls from Zankoku and Soko. Why would Lupinus need have these stands if they weren't celebrating anything, or were they common around these parts?

He didn't really care, all he cared about was finding something to eat.

The sounds of something whizzing by caught the young Dragon Slayer's attention, causing his eye's to widen in alarm before flipping back as the game stand in front of him collapsed in a plum of smoke and flames. Shouts of panic and fear blew up with the sudden act of terrorism as shots rang out all over the plaza. Each shot fired seem to be capable of bringing about an explosion as the force of each explosion tossed every person nearby the stands into the air.

"Dammit! Can't I get a moment of peace every once in a while!?" Natsu grit his teeth as he tried to stand his place against the force of a close by stand erupting into flames and smoke. He coughed, the bellowing smoke easily entering his lungs from the close distance. At least he was immune to the flames.

Turning back to see what was going on, Natsu was blown back by another stand blowing up. Small tears were opened from the wood of the stand turning into shrapnel and cutting open his coat as he was sent crashing into the wall of a building. He gasped in pain, flinching in attempt to hold back the scream of pain. Looked like his body was indented within the wall of the building. He struggled to move his body out the rock, biting back the pain from the chipped stones poking into through his coat and skin.

A large shadow rose from the smokescreen of flames and black smoke before Natsu, moving back its arm to raise the rather large long sword in its grip high in the air.

Natsu bared his teeth, "Crap. That looks like it might hurt."

The clang of steel was heard before Natsu felt the painful sensation of his body being sliced in half. Shaking away the surprise at the unknown stranger helping him, the Dragon Slayer went to work on freeing himself from his dented position.

"Hurry up! I can't hold him back much longer here!"

That voice, it sounded really familiar. Whoever it was had his thanks though. Flaring his body with a violent flare of flames, Natsu was able to create his own explosion to poke a hole through the wall he was stuck in.

"My house! What the hell was that!?"

'Oops. I'm pretty sure Levy-chan told me to not destroy other peoples property.' Shaking away the dust and pebbles from the blown up wall, Natsu moved his head back to where he saw the silhouettes of the two sword wielding shadows. The glint of something sharp was his only warning to what came next. He ducked, missing the swing of the long blade as a voice mumbled curses.

A series of swift sword strikes broke through the smoke clouding his vision, slashing away the smoke with the strong swipes aimed at his body. A small cut ran along Natsu's cheek, his eye' widening in alarm as he could finally get a clear view at his attacker.

'Weird Cowboy guy?' The guy who Levy explained to him talked Spanish or whatever? What the heck? He was still hanging around the town? Didn't bad guys go running for the hills once they were spotted? What was he doing here and why was he attacking little old him?

Silverio glared at the pink boy desperately trying to dodge his large sword. The pink child from the other day? He wasn't the little scarlet one he was looking for. Dammit! That last attack she had used earlier must of messed with his vision. He hadn't meant to go after the odd boy from the other day.

Oh well, might as well tie up loose ends while he was there.

"Rosa. It's good to see you once again, nino." Tearing through the street with his sword, Silverio shot the friction of his blade ripping apart the stone street at Natsu in a kinetic blade of energy. Too close to dodge, Natsu ate the full force of the energy blade striking at his chest, sending him flying off from the Latino mage with a shout of pain. Silverio rested his new blade on his shoulder with a satisfied sigh, cracking his neck as he watched a plume of debris and smoke rise up from where the boy crashed.

"I just wish it wasn't while I was busying doing my job. Lo siento(I'm sorry), but I'm going to have to kill you too. My jefe(boss) wouldn't really be pleased if I left behind anymore loose ends strolling around. Espero que peudas perdonarme, nino rosa(I hope you can forgive me, pink boy)." Silverio said with a sliver of remorse with a tip of his hat to poor boy.

Quickly moving for his sword, the dark mage simply raised his sword a bit higher above from its resting place on his shoulder's over his head to block the scabbard swinging to split his head in two. He didn't need to look away from the crash sight of the rose haired boy to know who was aiming for his head. The girl was stronger then she looked, he had to give her that.

"Ah, Escarlata, I see you still haven't made the smart, tactical decision to run away in all the madness me and my men have created." he chuckled as he looked from the corner to his eye to see the braided red headed knight glaring at him as he sword struggled to fight against his own. "What a poor decision, tonta. Rosa was the perfect distraction to save yourself for another day."

"Another day?" Erza smirked as she flipped back from crossing swords with the deadly mage. She landed back on her feet a few spaces from him, raising her scabbard to point at his chest with a stern glare.

"I'd rather die this day then let someone else die just so that I could live for a day! Be one day or eternity! I won't run away like a cowered and let someone die as a distraction! Besides, I wouldn't underestimate the rose boy you just tossed aside."


"Karyu no Koen(Fire Dragon's Brilliant Flame)!"

This seemed awfully familiar.

Holding back a sigh, Silverio easily sliced the large ball of flames in half before they could burn him alive. The two halves flew by his sides, ruffling his clothes before an explosion blew up behind him, casting a slight orange-red glow to his body.

The same trick again? It didn't work last time, why would it now. Silverio was a trained, skilled mage with incredible amount of experience. Like he would fall for a trick from a little boy.

"Kuro Shageki(Claw Shooting)!"

'Que carajo(What the fuck)?' Silverio's eye's widened in shock as little bullet like nails of fire drilled through the smoke hiding the body of beaten rose haired boy and came aiming for him. He sidestepped the many little shots of deadly, not believing the heat the little nail emitted before cursing loudly as he soon found many more shooting off after him. Moving for his long blade, the dark mage tore through the little nails with swift, blinding swings of his sword.

He sweated, not believing his eye's as he canceled out the boy's spell and pulled back his long sword.

Little molten holes drilled straight through his long sword. Hell, they still glowed orange-red from the heat of the nails he blocked. One more solid swing was all it would take for it shatter now. And his blade wasn't made out of no cheap material either.

What kind of fire magic could do that to a high quality long blade? It wasn't any ordinary fire magic, that was for sure.

Waving back the smoke cloud around him, Natsu flicked his nose with his thumb as he aimed a cocky smirk towards the dumbfounded cowboy looking guy across from him.

"How ya like that? A smoking, cold, doctor taught me that little spell a while back and I've been meaning to try it out against a tough opponent. And it looks like it works just fine!" he grinned, clenching his hands in a claw like gesture at the stunned mage.

Small trails of smoke rose up from his orange glowing fingernails that elongated into needle like claws. Swiping both his arms across another, Natsu fired a larger volley of bullets from his claws at Silverio in a wave formation.

Silverio didn't waste any time to see exactly what those things could do once they made a solid hit. Jumping away from the sizzling bullets he was unprepared for the red headed knight to come falling from above with her sword drawn to stab through his skull. Rotating his body in mid air he swung his legs to clutch onto the scabbard, tightening his hold and ignoring the blade cutting slightly into his thighs. He smirked, not wasting any time as he flipped to fling the surprised girl into the little fire mage ready to fire at him.

Natsu bit his teeth as he could see Erza get in the way of his shot before shouting in pain as he found her crashing into him like bullet to his abdomen.

Taking his chance as they wound up tangled from their crash, Silverio quickly landed on his feet before shooting off from the spot aim an axle kick at the two distracted young mages. Requipping his now useless long sword he decided to add a little mix to his attack as he brought out a cross handled sword to swing along with his kick.


A blazing fist and a swinging scabbard met both of his attacks, leaving him standing on one leg as he fought to overpower the two little mages.

"Would someone mind telling me what's going on here?" Natsu said blankly, breaking the fighting atmosphere as both Silverio and Erza blinked in confusion.

"Not that I don't mind all the fighting, but I'd like to know why I'm fighting."

"Sorry about all this, Natsu-san." Erza looked down in regret, cursing herself for letting someone else get involved with her business. She shook her head before looking back at the boy with a sorry smile.

"I didn't want you involved, but it seems me blinding Silverio with a plate of pasta as he spotted me must of made him confuse you for me in his confused state. I'm truly sorry for dragging you into this conflict."

"Now don't beat yourself over this, nina tonta(dumb girl)." Silverio put more pressure behind his kick and his arm clashing with Erza's, slightly driving both onto their knees as he glared coldly at the mages, "I was eventually going to go after Rosa eventually. You just saved me the trouble of tracking him down. I thank you for that, truly."

". . .Where did ya get pasta?" Natsu asked Erza as she sweatdropped at the odd question, "I'm still hungry and pasta kinda sounds good about now."

Silverio shook his head at the boy's ignorant question, "Gluttony is a sin, Rosa. Just as Honor is a sin."

"Honor?" Erza frowned, trying to buy some time to build up some strength to push back the dark mage. "Honor isn't a sin. There are only seven sins in this world, honor isn't one of them."

"Everything can be considered a sin to Kami. Even your very existence can be a sin." Having had enough of all the talking, Silverio decided to finish what he started. Adding some magic power to his free hand he raised it high in the before the two before dropping it like a weight.

Suddenly a heavy force crushed down onto both Natsu and Erza, nearly suffocating them with the pressure that was nailing them still.

"One that I will correct myself."

"F-Fat c-chance!" Natsu grounded out before his cheeks comically puffed like balloons.

"En el nombre de dios(What in god's name)!" Silverio's eye's were as wide as saucers as he watched the unbelievable happen before his eye's.

"Karyu no Hoko(Fire Dragon's Roar)!"

It was impossible. There by no means was there any type of magic that could let you breath fire! The physics to such a thing would be too complicated even with magic! Only dragons were capable of such a feat!

Yet no matter how many times he denied the flood of flames escaping the rose haired boy's mouth it would do no help as he was carried away by the roar of flames.

The roar sent him spiraling in the air to crash through a small house, releasing the gravity spell holding both Natsu and Erza still. They breathed in a sigh of relief before looking back at another with grins.

"How. . .did you do that?" Erza asked with curiosity. Never before had she seen a fire mage fight the way Natsu did. And she knew of a few back at Fairy Tail like Macao who was a specialist with his Purple Flare magic.

But breathing fire and cladding your body with said fire was unheard of before. She was pretty sure she had never seen anyone breath fire out of their mouths like it was nothing.

"Eh? What, breath fire?" Natsu scratched his head in confusion. Why was it so odd to breath fire? It was like this the last time he was at Chisana Ki. Next thing you know they'd be saying they've never seen anyone eat fire too.

"I'm a Dragon Slayer. A Fire Dragon Slayer. My Tou-san taught me how to do all this stuff when I was really little. And now I got the body of a dragon to fight with!"

Dragon Slayer? A magic that augmented the body of its caster to that of a real dragon? There was magic like that? It sounded similar to Mira's takeover magic. Only more tamed and without transforming into a demon. Gildarts did say that the boy Natsu was something special and was sad he couldn't get him to join the guild.

So this was why. The potential of a dragon. It sounded ridiculous but she did just see him breath a flamethrower of fire magic at their enemy. The proof was right in front of her, so there was no use denying anything.

"Nino dragon(Dragon boy)." A large plume of dust blew up from the house Silverio crashed through, the silhouette of his body behind the cloud showing off he was standing back with a much larger sword on his shoulder's.

"That was an impressive show of magic. I can see why he has his eye's on you. You can become a threat in the future if you continue to grow with your abilities. And I'm afraid I can't allow that."

A wave of his large sword was all Silverio needed to collapse the small house he was in and in the process, blowing away the cloud of dust in his way.

His body was slightly singed from the torrent of flames drowning his body. Small beads of blood ran down his body from the rubble of the house and parts of his clothes were burned. He was lucky he trained his body against powerful magic such as fire. But dragon flames were another thing. It was no wonder he took some damage from the boy's spell.

Not to mention he had lost his favorite hat in the rubble.

Dusting off the bits of dirt and wooden chips on his shoulder, Silverio heaved his buster sword high in the air before letting it drop. The thing must of weighed more then it looked seeing as it he hadn't even put any strength in it and it was still capable of cracking the ground with its weight alone. Tiny pieces of rock defied gravity as they levitated and crumbled in the golden aura the buzz cut man was radiating, his sheer magical power casting a powerful gale to spiral around his body as he glared at the two mages before him.

"I believe introductions are in order. It's only fair you give out the name of the man who ended you before its the last thing you remember." A wisp of golden light rose from his free hand, elongating into a fine cutlass blade in his hand a second later.

"My name is Silverio Juarez. It's a sad pleasure to meet you."

"My name is Erza Scarlet and it's not a pleasure to meet you." Erza glared as she requipped two swords into her hands and readied them.

Clawing his hands, Natsu grinned widely as flames once again flowed out from his body to cover every inch in dragon flames.

"You better remember this name in your sleep! Because its going to be haunting you for the rest of your life. Natsu Dragneel, son of Igneel and the most badass Dragon Slayer you have ever meet!"

Done with the late introductions the three wasted little time in rushing off to meet in a heated clash that would no doubt result in massive property damage.

The master and Levy respectively weren't going to be happy after this.

Above a tall clothing shop, a blonde haired man wearing spiked earphones and an lightning bolt scar running down one of his eye's watched by with interest at the battle below him. Smoke and charred bodies could be seen lying around him, all the passed out bodies seeming to wear an identical uniform as the big boss fighting his little teammate and the pink boy.

He smirked, not even turning his eye's away from the action as one of the bodies moved and attempted to run away and warn their leader from what he guessed.


A bolt of yellow, sparking lighting shut off the last of the man's strength as he was electrocuted from above. His eye's blanked out, his words dying as he fell over and collapsed in pain and fell into darkness.

"Shut up, will ya?" the blonde haired man yawned as he decided to take a seat and watch the action. Especially the weird kid who seemed to use a magic similar to his own.

"The show's about to start. No need to spoil the fun before things really start going." he chuckled before an eruption of dust blew up from below.

"A Dragon Slayer, huh? And here I thought I was the only one."

Levy yawned as she rubbed the sleep out of her eye. Yesterday was so tiring. From arriving to a new town, fighting off some dark mages, saving a red haired knight with a one heck of a sweet tooth, picking grapes and riding back forth on trains with a motion sicked partner, to meeting some odd priest, sage, merchant, whatever he was and having to take him out for ramen and stopping said man from selling his crappy items off to innocent people. Her life lately had been so full of excitement and weirdness she honestly was no longer surprised.

Hopping out of her bed she was about to wake up the snoring pink head only to pause as she noticed her room was devoid of any snoring. She frowned, scratching her cheek with confusion as to why she couldn't hear anything at all.

Natsu always snored. Always. By now she got use to it after a week of him snoring on the road. It was hard to get use to, but she wasn't a genius for nothing. She found a way by drowning out the noise with pleasant ones recorded in her head. Not to mention it was nice to at least know someone else was around even as she slept.

So where was he? He hadn't left her to go off searching for food again, did he? Levy pouted to herself knowing she was most likely right. This had happen before the last time they stopped off at a small village. Honestly, it was like all he ever thought about was food and fighting.

Levy suddenly groaned at the thought. Even worse, he could of gone off to pick a fight knowing she was asleep. Another possibility.

Well, since she was awake already, and was hungry herself, she might as well go and find Natsu. Before he caused any type of damage.

After taking a quick trip to the bathroom to change and freshen up a little, Levy was ready to leave with her pack strapped to her back before a knock came to her door.

"Room service!"

Room service? Wasn't it a little early for that? Oh well, she shrugged as she moved to open the door. She was leaving anyways, might as well let them in.

Big mistake.

Opening the door the last thing Levy saw before she was knocked out was the barrel of a gun pointed at her forehead. A loud bang rang in her ear's a second later before she fell unconscious in the arms of her assailant.

Several men in dark ponchos stood outside Levy and Natsu's door, each one armed with multiple guns and black cowboy hats. Bodies also laid around them trailing from the halls, the workers and staff of the hotel clearly knocked out or mortally wounded with gun shot wounds littering their bodies.

"Maldita sea, hombre(Goddammit, man)." One of the gunners whistled as he watched the one who had shot the little girl in the head sling her over his shoulder, "That was brutal. Have you no soul?" he chuckled.

"Callate(Shut up). All I did was use a Sueno Bala(Dream Bullet). She should count herself lucky I didn't treat her to same treatment as the staff of this place."

"Whatever you say." he shrugged as they moved to leave the hotel before the Rune Knights found them.

"Let's just get back to base. I'm sure Silverio-sama will be glad we found the target. Too bad we couldn't find the pink one."

Chapter 7 finished!

Shit is going down. Natsu and Erza are now caught up with fighting Silverio, a man of unknown magical power while a blonde haired lightning mage watches on with interest. Levy has been kidnapped and there is sadly no one to save her. What will happen to our young heroes? And are Tetsu's troops already on the move with their dastardly plan!?

I don't know. Let me think about it for a day or two and get back to you in a week or two. My video game emulators on my laptop are sadly calling to me and I don't think I can ignore them any longer.

Now that that's out of the way, I decided to leave behind the spell list for now. I might bring them back in the future, but for now they would only take more time away from updating as I work on the description of every new spell. I and wrote the meaning of the Spanish words next to another in bold font. Just in case some of you don't understand Spanish.

I got more work to finish up. I got to add a few chapters to my crossover story and focus more on The Story of a Dragon, a Knight, and a Fairy Hunter. I'm already at three hundred reviews for that one. Kickass.

I'm hoping to bring in more reviews for all of my stories. I got this funny title of God-king of Natza from a familiar writer known as Negligible1. Don't take it too seriously, Kuro, or as he's known as know, Wrath, will always be the face of Natza, fuck, the dude is Natza. But, it got me thinking. Why not try to be known as well known writer in the Fairy Tail fandom like Kenchi618 is in Naruto?

It's a nice goal and it would keep me writing for a long while. So help out, if you can. Drop a review from time to time.

So read and review. It's common courtesy.

NeoShadows fading in and out.