A/N: It's finally come. This is the moment we've all been waiting for. Do you have any idea how excited I've been to write this chapter?! Four years, guys… For 4 years, I've been waiting to write this, and now it's finally happening. More notes at the end for anyone who's interested in some behind the scenes details.

This is why I love CoLu Week… Prepare yourselves!

(As a quick note, please remember that I don't write smut for characters under the age of 18. Do the math, guys... Lucy's just recently had her 18th birthday in X791 - and her 18th birthday is even mentioned during the GMG arc - and Cobra does explicitly state in chapter 6 of this story that he's 25... because... y'know, Mashima never actually gave him an age, so I gave him one.)


CoLu Week 2019
Day 4
Sweater


He could still feel the winter chill on her freezing lips as they moved desperately over his. Cobra didn't even care that she was pulling his hair as he bent lower and his hands gripped her waist, bringing her flush against him. Lucy didn't seem to mind the way he pawed at her, either. Her soul was too preoccupied with how she'd had to fight to spend just enough time with Gray before she could reasonably leave. And how she'd reasoned with herself the entire time she'd been walking home that she needed to just get to her apartment and handle the aroused state Cobra had left her in on her own.

But then she'd thought better of it, and her feet turned at a fork in the road. And here she was, barely having taken the time to kick off her boots and unzip her jacket before coming to find him in his room.

Cobra groaned when his hands curved around her hips and down to cup her ass. Had this skirt really been this short when they were skating? No. No, he remembered pulling her skirt back down just before Gray had come into the clearing. It had gone down to her thighs then, but now it had ridden up. It took no effort to slip his finger past it and right between her trembling legs once again.

The soft mewl she let loose only spurred him on. He couldn't feel the moisture that had collected on her stockings earlier, but he knew that he could remedy that relatively quickly.

Or he could…

Cobra growled as she bit his lip, and her body rubbed lewdly against him. He was going to fucking destroy her if she kept that shit up. There was only so much he could do to calm things down, and if she wanted to turn back at some point, he couldn't guarantee that he'd be willing to listen.

Her slender fingers massaged down his throat and chest, pausing to marvel at the feel of his collar bones. Fuck, she really did like those, huh? Based on the way she moaned and arched back into his hand, then slipped her tongue between his lips, she definitely did.

But he wanted a whole lot more than just kissing her. Sure, it was nice. And he definitely got a kick out of how she lost track of everything around them the few times he'd kissed her before, but now wasn't the time for that. Some other time, he'd spend hours teasing her into a sex-crazed stupor with his lips and tongue alone. But she'd done enough teasing for the night, and if he didn't get some sort of relief soon, Cobra was going to murder something.

The only question he needed to answer was where. There were only so many options in his room. The dresser he was leaning against, a wall, the door, or his bed. There were plenty of other choices in the rest of his apartment, but he'd be damned if he tried to get her anywhere that wasn't nearby.

And he didn't really want her lying in his bed. That was too intimate. Like hell was he going to lay her down on his pillows, turn the lights down low, throw on some Barry White, and make sweet passionate love to her.

Hell no. Cobra was going to fuck her brains out… as long as she gave him the go ahead.

'Just tonight… Get it out of my system, then move on… Just once…'

He hummed and finally broke away from her lips. Before she could start kissing her way down his throat, on a mission to get on her knees in front of him, he used the hand that wasn't currently toying with the seam of her stockings to grab her chin. "I heard that," he rasped.

"Good," she panted. Her fingers shook as they traversed the plains of his stomach. Her hips shifted to push his fingers closer to her clit, but he smirked and moved them toward her dripping entrance instead.

"You sound like you want me," he said, his eye narrowing as her eyelids fluttered at the briefest bit of pressure against her stockings and panties. "But what is it you want?"

"Don't make me say it," she whimpered. The healthy flush to her cheeks brightened as his finger pressed more firmly against her, just barely forcing her panties to dip into her center. "C-Careful…"

"Wouldn't want me to rip these, huh?" he chuckled. She didn't get a chance to respond before his finger hooked around the seam of her stockings, and he pulled. Her eyes widened as the soft sound of sheer material ripping between her legs gave way to his fingers deftly sliding her panties to the side and spearing into her.

For the first time in a long while, Cobra watched the pleasure ripple through a woman as he ramped up her arousal. Lucy's head tipped back and a strangled moan warbled in her throat as he wriggled his fingers in her wet, cloying heat. He needed this. He needed to see her come apart. The fantasies he'd been having for the past month or so weren't doing the job anymore, and he could only listen to her masturbate in her bathtub so many times before he needed a slice of the pie for himself.

The fact that she'd been the one to come to him, that she'd had the audacity to pin him to his fucking dresser and force him to kiss her like she had, was just an added bonus. It meant his manipulation had worked like a fucking charm. He'd teased her until she couldn't take it any longer, and now… He wasn't the one pursuing her. Lucy came to him on her own.

"Just once?" he rasped, nipping at her chin. His fingers planted as deeply as he could reach, and he scissored them slowly at first.

"Yes."

"Nothing more," he said.

"No," she moaned.

"Trying to get your rocks off?" he chuckled.

When her eyes slid open, the fire burning in them washed over him in a wave of lust so intense that he nearly froze. Her soul practically vibrated with need as she reached down to his towel and pulled as hard as she could. The fabric slipped down his legs, but didn't hit the floor. With his ass still pressed against the dresser, the towel was stuck.

Cobra grinned. Oh, she was definitely being forward. Based on her memories, this was all new territory for her. That was fine, though, because he didn't plan on letting her take the lead for too much longer. If this was a one time thing, then he was damn well going to get his time's worth.

"Just say the word, and I'll fuck that psychotic little brain of yours right out of you." Cobra leaned down to bite harshly at her kiss swollen lips, eliciting another small moan from her. His fingers withdrew and slammed back in, and he reveled in the way her breath stuttered. How she grabbed his hips to help keep her standing. "I'll be nice… I won't make you beg."

Lucy sat on her knees, her legs spread wide, wearing nothing but a black leather collar around her throat. Her hand dipped between her legs to tease herself. "Please, Cobra," she moaned. "Please fuck me…"

"Keep thinking like that, and I really will put a fucking collar on you," he snarled just before dragging her into another, more heated kiss. His tongue ravaged her mouth, giving her no opportunity to do more than take what he could give her. He didn't want her in control now. Not if she was going to think like that.

With no warning, he ripped his hand from between her legs and pulled on her skirt. It wouldn't budge past her hips. Fuck. The stupid thing probably had buttons or a zipper, or a damn combination lock. That last option seemed more and more likely as he felt in vain for something to loosen it. Lucy's hands joined the search though, and within moments she was shimmying it off. He smacked her hands away before she could pull off her stockings though.

"Those stay on," he sneered against her trembling lips.

He grabbed her waist and spun so she was the one pinned to his dresser. His towel finally fell to the floor, leaving him completely naked, but he didn't fucking care. For once, he didn't mind having no clothes on.

And he knew for a fact that there was no way Lucy would be getting anywhere close to his level of undress.

He didn't even have to guide her to jump up onto the dresser. Like second nature, she perched herself right on the edge, her legs spread to accommodate his hips. And then her hands were on him again, gliding over his drying stomach, down to his hips, and up to his chest again and again. It nearly killed the fucking mood for him, because she was moving too fast. He wanted her to touch him slower, more carefully.

Except when his lips left hers, and his hands nearly tore her shirt in an effort to get it up past her heaving chest, he didn't mind all that much anymore. Not when the sight of her black lacy bra barely containing those perky fucking tits of hers was right in front of him.

Lucy smiled down at him and grabbed his head, just behind his ears, guiding him closer to her breasts. And suddenly he was the one rushing to touch her. He pulled on the cups of her bra and wrapped his lips around one pale pink nipple with a soft groan. She tasted like fucking candy. Her quiet mewl of pleasure became a full, wanton moan as he filled her sex with two fingers again, pumping quickly in time with his swirling tongue around her nipple.

"Cobra," Lucy moaned. "Fuck, Cobra!"

Shit, if she was going to sound like that, he wasn't going to get the chance to fuck her. That was the moment it hit him. He'd yet to have sex since getting out of prison. He honestly hadn't seen the point in it, and had been a little preoccupied with dealing with Fairy Tail's insanity, and his sexy parole officer.

Cobra scraped his teeth against her breast, groaning quietly as she arched back and pushed herself more fully against his lips. Still he drew back just enough to look down at her. She was an absolute mess, splayed out on his dresser with her tits out, her stockings torn at the crotch and her matching black lace thong pushed off to one side. He didn't even mind that she was missing the little tuft of hair above her pussy that he would have loved to have rubbing against his face. No, she was bare, waxed and primped as though she'd been planning this. Except he knew that she hadn't planned any of it.

He'd been the one to surprise her with ice skating.

He picked up the pace with his fingers, listening to the way her soul and her voice hummed in perfect harmony.

He couldn't take this anymore. Her moans were growing louder, and if she got too loud and hurt his ears, he was going to have blue balls. But there was an easy fix for that, and with a devilish grin he withdrew his fingers from her sex just before she could crest that peak into bliss. Where was the fun in it if he didn't torture her just a little bit? He could bring her right to the edge, then ease off until she was literally crying in frustration.

'No! Don't stop! Come on, I was so close! Just let me cum, damnit!'

"Not yet," he chuckled, his eye flashing with excitement when her jaw dropped in shock for a moment. Ah, she'd really forgotten he could hear her. If he let her forget about it again, if she got so worked up that she just wasn't thinking about it, that could definitely work in his favor.

"Cobra-"

He silenced her with a rough, needy kiss, then breathed against her lips, "Do you need it?"

Lucy nodded, moaning when he kissed her more fervently.

"I'm naked here," he growled. "Don't think I'm just gonna finger you and call it a day."

"Wouldn't dream of it," she rasped. She squeaked when he palmed her ass and pulled her off the dresser, her legs instantly wrapping around his hips. Lucy grasped desperately at the top of the dresser to keep herself balanced, but then he rocked his hips and let her feel the full length of his arousal against her core.

"Shirt off," he said. He might have enjoyed it just a little too much when she struggled to get her shirt over her head. His hips curled again, and he took no small amount of pleasure in the way her own hips moved to try and ease him into her. But now she was taking too long. "Hurry or I'm ripping this fucking thing off of you and making you walk home topless."

Lucy's eyes narrowed at him, and a sneer suddenly pulled at her upper lip. "You wouldn't."

"Tell me I wouldn't again," he grinned. Her lips pursed, and he chuckled while setting her back on the dresser. He could be nice and help her out a little, he supposed. It was definitely a surprise when her ankles locked at the small of his back and ground his hips against her as he reached up to her shirt. He pulled it over her head, then paused to let out a shaky breath when he felt his cock prodding her entrance.

Damn. Double damn. He wanted to be in her right fucking then. To hell with her stupid turtleneck coming off! Her arms were still stuck in the sleeves, so she couldn't touch him. It kind of sucked, because he did like her hands on his skin, but at the same time… now she wouldn't be touching him too much.

"Cobra, my arms-"

"I know," he crooned, smirking down at her. One hand gripped her shirt and pushed it back against the wall, and the other reached down to palm his straining arousal. "I've got you all tied up now."

The way Lucy whimpered and spread her legs just a little wider for him had Cobra more than ready to plunge into her soaking depths. The only problem was that he couldn't just fuck her. He held her heavy gaze and pulled back his foreskin, then carefully dipped into her waiting heat. Slowly. He had to take this shit slowly, or it would pull, and that would kill the mood faster than waking up with Midnight tonguing his asshole.

(Thank fucking god that had never happened.)

His strokes were short, careful, and he marveled at the way she squirmed with the need to feel more of him. By the time Cobra was half-buried in her, Lucy's legs had wrapped around his hips again, and her feet were digging into his ass, begging him to move faster. He kind of liked how it felt to have the sheer material brushing against the backs of his thighs.

"So impatient," he rasped. Fuck, she felt amazing! He needed more of her, right then and there. Cobra withdrew and slammed himself back in, buried to the hilt and groaning as she clamped down on him with a sharp cry. Just that one stroke was enough to send him into a frenzy though.

Normally, he would have worked her up to the punishing pace he set with his hips slamming into her, but he couldn't stop himself. Now that he had her at his mercy, Cobra wanted everything. He wanted her crying out in ecstasy, screaming his fucking name loud enough for the neighbors to question whether he was murdering her or giving her the best fuck of her life.

Lucy struggled to wriggle out of her shirt the rest of the way, and he twisted the fabric around his hand, pushing her hands higher on the wall. Hell no, he wasn't letting her get free. He wanted her tied up, helpless, forced to accept whatever he did to her willing body. "C-Co… Cobr- agh fuck! Yes! Fuck me! Fuck me hard!"

Her desperate plea slithered down his spine and pushed him to new heights. Not once had the tips of his ears burned with the need to please a woman, but the sudden flash of heat traveling down into his skull was new. Tantalizing. Intoxicating.

He dove down with a vicious snarl and wrapped his lips around her bouncing breast, sucking with enough force for her head to fly back and hit the wall. He kind of hoped his bitch of a neighbor was forced to listen to Lucy scream. It would definitely make up for the late night Enya jam sessions that happened on a weekly basis that he was forced to endure.

Damnit, he needed more fucking hands! He wanted to touch her soft skin everywhere. All at once. He needed to feel everything he could right then. The best he could manage was tightly gripping one stocking-covered thigh and using it as leverage to pull her onto him more forcefully.

Shit, that was amazing!

He could feel her winding up for her release already. And just knowing that had him stretching out each thrust, pulling back until just the tip was buried in her, then pushing forward hard enough for the dresser to bang against the wall. And through it all, she moaned. At one point, she howled from the pleasure that tightened her muscles and turned her nipples into taut peaks, begging for him to lick and tease and nibble to his heart's content.

When his tongue dragged up the center of her chest, she surprised him by rolling her hips in an attempt at keeping up with him. All it did was change the angle to something utterly fucking heavenly.

Lucy gasped a moment later. "Cobra, wait…"

"No," he growled, his hips snapping faster. The dresser banged harder against the wall. She couldn't make him stop now. He was too fucking close. He'd waited for this, and the last thing she was going to do was make him fucking stop! Even if he'd wanted to, his body had other ideas as he pulled her leg over his arm.

Lucy howled with delight as he buried himself deeply in her. "C-Cobra… N-No condom, and…" She paused, whimpering at the short, deep thrusts he gave her. Her short, hot breaths fanned over his face as their noses brushed together. "Don't cum in me."

"I'm not a fucking moron," he snarled. Hell no, he wasn't going to chance knocking her up just because he was barebacking. "I plan on covering your tits with my jizz."

The sudden splash of color in her soul washed over him. Oh, did she like that idea? When he listened in, he realized that no one had ever done that to her. Just the thought of trying it was turning her on. And if that wasn't enough of a reason for him to let go of her shirt, then the thought of feeling her clamping down on his cock as she finally came definitely was.

His thumb pressed down on her clit, drawing quick circles over her swollen bundle of nerves.

"Yes!" she cried out. "Cobra, yes!"

'Oh, thank god! I knew he'd make me cum! Shit… Shit, here it comes. Fuck, fuck, fuck…'

It took every ounce of willpower he possessed to slam into her and not let his own release take over as she flew over the edge. His hand left her clit and covered her mouth before she could scream loud enough to break the fucking windows. Her sex tightened around him in wave after delicious wave, pushing his release closer and closer to the tip of his cock.

Fuck, he was going to cum… Not yet. Not… His eye closed so he couldn't see her, but then she rolled her hips and his eye shot open again, taking in every inch of her from her tousled blonde hair to the blush on her cheeks, her half-lidded eyes and the dark hickeys on her throat, her quivering breasts. Her torn stockings.

Shit! Those stockings were his undoing. Cobra pulled out and took his hand from her mouth, wrapping it quickly around his cock just fast enough so he could aim. He didn't even have to stroke to get himself over the edge. Just the sensation of her slick sex sliding away from his cock was enough. The first shot of his release left him groaning quietly, but he couldn't stop himself from watching where it landed, right on her stomach. Another reached up to her breasts. He stroked himself just a little, and his eye finally closed as he allowed himself to bask in the buzzing sensation across his skin that accompanied this high.

Her soul thrummed with something dark and erotic as she reveled in the little droplets of liquid fire spattering over her chest and stomach. The heat of it was what turned her on. That was… really good to know.

When he looked at her again, Lucy hardly resembled the woman who'd come to Era and gotten him released from prison. Mussed and thoroughly fucked, with his cum splattered across her stomach and soaking into her bra. God, that was sexy as hell. He'd dragged her down to the depths of hell and she looked at him as though it was nothing short of paradise.

This was something he never got to see in her soul when she fantasized about him. It was always focused on him, not this dazed expression on her face or the slap-happy grin trying to curl her swollen lips. This was definitely going to be starring in his fantasies when he was alone and feeling the need to work off some stress. At least, until he found some other woman to fill his time.

Finally, he took a step back and bent down to grab his discarded towel. And his boxers that he'd dropped when he'd seen her there in his doorway, staring at him as though she was going to eat his fucking soul. Cobra shivered as he rubbed the towel over his crotch, just enough to wipe away most of the moisture clinging to his pubes from her sex. Then he tossed her the towel.

He was so fucking tempted to give her a swat on the ass and tell her Good game, champ, but the last thing he wanted was for her to give him any attitude. He was too relaxed right then to chance ruining it was her sass.

He listened to her slow movements as she used his damp towel to clean herself up, but Cobra set his attention on getting his boxers on. Then his pajama pants. He'd yet to grab a tank top, but now he was definitely considering it. Especially if she was going to be there for any period of time.

Just because she'd seen his back didn't mean he was going to let that happen again.

It was with that thought in mind that he turned back to his dresser, nudged her leg to the side, and opened the drawer that had all of his tank tops in it.

They didn't speak to one another as she finally hopped down and fixed her shirt and bra, then her panties. Cobra was tempted to have her take the stockings off since they were mostly useless at that point anyway. But what the hell would he do with them? Keep them as a memento of the time he'd fucked Lucy Heartfilia? He didn't need it.

Cobra let out a secretive smirk as she tried to pull on her skirt without wobbling. Once she was fully dressed, she looked up at him expectantly. He simply raised a brow at her in return. "I've gotta get some shit done," he said.

Her cheeks burned brightly as she nodded. "Yeah, I should probably get home and get a good shower…"

'Last thing I need is Natsu smelling Cobra's cum on me… He acts like he's oblivious, but I know he's smarter than he lets on when it comes to that.'

Cobra was going to keep it to himself that just a shower wouldn't get his smell off of her entirely. And Natsu's nose was probably the strongest in the guild. Lucy would have to scrub off layers of skin for days on end to fully get rid of Cobra's pheromones. "You should probably wash your clothes, too," he said. That was all he'd offer on the matter.

He wanted to laugh when, as they walked to his front door for her to get her jacket and boots back on, she briefly wondered if he was going to shower again. He didn't say anything. She could continue wondering all she wanted. And besides, she should know by then that he hated having people in his business. Who he happened to stick his dick in was definitely his fucking business.

Lucy looked up at him once she'd zipped her jacket back up, her lips pursed. "You know, I had a reason for coming over here…"

"One that didn't involve you screaming my name?" he chuckled. Oh, how he loved the way her blush deepened at the mention of what they'd done. This could be a lot of fun in the days to come.

"Remember, we were supposed to warm up with cocoa," she said.

"I don't have any cocoa."

"O-Oh…" Lucy winced, and he realized that while it was a thin excuse at best for her to come over, she actually had been looking forward to doing that.

Cobra crossed his arms over his chest, then forced himself to stare at her face. He was so tempted to look anywhere but at her as he spoke. "Make me some cocoa in the morning," he said.

"Huh?"

"When I come over," he elaborated, rolling his eye. "I'm gonna be cold, so…"

Lucy grinned up at him. "Cocoa will be ready when you get there," she said. "Should I poison it?"

He simply shrugged. He'd never had cocoa before, so how would he know whether or not it would taste any good with a dash of poison? It would probably be for the best if he just tried it normally first, and then adjusted it accordingly on his own. "Nah," he finally said. "I've never had it. Lemme try it out first."

Her soul hummed with excitement at getting to experience a first of his. Which was weird as hell. She'd already been the one to show him the gory glory that was horror movies, what more did she want?

"Okay, well, I'm gonna get going. I'll see you at nine?"

He nodded and watched as she turned to open the door. Something felt wrong, but he couldn't place it. It was weird though, having her just walk out like this after he'd fucked her. This was a bit out of his comfort zone, because he'd never really planned on fucking Lucy in his apartment. This was supposed to be his own personal space. If anything, he would have preferred to bang her against her front door just before he'd left one night. Then he could be the one walking out, and not her. Then she could sit there in a daze while he walked home.

It wasn't like he was worried about her making it home safely, but he still reached out and wrapped an arm around her waist, dragging her back into him. Lucy squeaked as he buried his nose against her throat, burrowing under the high collar of her shirt. He smirked, wrapping his lips around the hickey he'd left on her while they'd been skating, then sucked so he could darken the little mark.

'Damn, why'd I have to go and say this was a one-time thing?... Hoo boy, he's gonna kill me…'

With a soft groan, Cobra pulled his lips away to marvel the purple-red bruising on her throat. He grinned down at the mark, knowing that Lucy would cover it if for no other reason than to avoid talking about who left it there.

"Cobra-"

He gently kissed her throat, then let her go. He reached around her and opened the door. "Merry Christmas, psycho," he rasped against her ear. "Nine sharp."

She scrambled to fix her collar and smiled at him as she walked out. "Merry Christmas," she said. He closed the door in her face, then locked it.

Fuck. He'd really gone and stepped in it this time.

"Daddy, are you and Mommy together now?"

Son of a bitch! He'd completely forgotten that Monty was in the living room. Cobra turned, his eye wide as he took in the little python sitting so innocuously on his sofa, his pale head lifted above the arm and his forked tongue flicking out over and over to scent the air.

"Is she gonna lay her eggs soon?"

"M-Monty that's not, uh… not how it works for humans." He wasn't prepared to have a fucking sex ed talk with his snake!

"But you… fucked?"

Cobra's jaw dropped. His little baby snake had really cursed. He really understood the use of that particular word? "Yeah, we did," he said absently.

God, Monty was growing up so fast!

"Daddy?"

"Yeah…"

"Did you stick your dude piston in her squish mitten?"

"What the fuck?!" he laughed suddenly. "Monty, where the hell did you hear that?"

"That guy with the helmet," Monty replied. He slithered over to the arm of the couch and waited to be picked up. Cobra, for his part, just laughed and obliged his little scaly friend, carrying him to the kitchen. "He said something about it. I didn't understand it."

Well, that explained it. Fucking Bickslow would say some weird shit like that. "Yeah, Monty," he said. "Now, enough talking about that. I have to bake some shit for Christmas at Lucy's tomorrow morning."

"Yay, Christmas!" Monty cheered.


Lucy paced back and forth in her apartment, staring at the clock every time she passed her writing desk. It was nearing 9:30 in the morning, and no one had showed up. Maybe she should have told her team to be at her apartment at 8:00 just so they would be there at the time she actually wanted them to show up. But she'd assumed that they wouldn't be too happy if she'd said the time to meet up was so early. This was their day to relax, too.

It didn't matter that she'd been up since five that morning, cleaning the place to the point where Natsu could (hygienically) eat food off the floor, if he so chose. Not that she'd let him actually go through with it, but still… it could happen.

There was nothing else for her to do anyway. She had water already heated up, ready to be made into hot cocoa, complete with marshmallows for added sweetness.

Her apartment was already decorated, too. The tree was much smaller than what she'd grown up with, but it wasn't like she had vaulted ceilings to work with. She'd even put up stockings, one for each member of their team, including Happy. She was sure Cobra would be surprised to have one himself. And Monty, who had a tiny stocking that really couldn't fit a whole lot of anything in it. But it was the thought that counted, she supposed.

She didn't really have as much as she needed to accommodate everyone where seating was concerned, but she'd put a few pillows on the floor as well, so everyone could at least be comfortable.

But all that work wouldn't be worth a whole lot of anything if no one actually came to her apartment!

Erza, she could see her trying to figure out how to haul things over to Lucy's apartment. Gray was probably already awake, and she knew for a fact that he hadn't forgotten because she'd been sure to remind him while changing from her ice skates back into her boots. Natsu… She'd literally told him to come and have fun and be ready for food. It just didn't make sense. Why hadn't anyone showed up?

And then there was Cobra. Had she messed things up by going to his place the night before? Was it going to be weird for him now that they'd had sex? It wasn't like they'd really had an in-depth discussion about how to handle things after the fact. If anything, he'd basically kicked her out after he'd gotten his rocks off. Okay, sure, she did need to get a shower, but maybe she could've done that at his apartment.

Was he reconsidering even coming over? God, she hoped not. She really wanted to have him try hot cocoa. And Monty! From what she'd been told, the little snake was excited to celebrate Christmas.

Which reminded her, she needed to figure out how to explain to a snake why people give each other presents on Christmas...

Then again, what was the point? She glanced at the clock again, plopping down on her couch with a heavy sigh. 9:40 in the morning. No one was coming.

The sudden knock on her door had Lucy jumping up and running across her living room to answer it. She was all smiles and warm welcomes even before opening the door. It was made so much better when she found Erza, Gray, Natsu, and Happy all standing there in their winter attire (even Happy had on a cute little fuzzy jacket), grinning right back at her, with their arms full of presents.

"Come on in, guys," she said, stepping back. "Presents over by the tree, and have a seat."

"Lucy, is there anything you need help with?" Gray asked as he came inside.

"Maybe dishing up food," she laughed. "We all know Natsu can't be trusted."

"I resemble that statement!" Natsu bellowed. Lucy bit her lips to try not to laugh, but then his grin widened even further as he walked past. Wait, did he actually mean to say that?

Lucy closed the door once Erza had made her way inside. "The decorations are lovely," Erza said, smiling fondly at the stockings. Her brows drew together when she came to Cobra's and Monty's. "Will Cobra be joining us?"

Happy cringed. "And Monty?"

"Well, I invited them," Lucy said. "Everyone on the team is here, and they are part of the team."

"Maybe I can get Cobra to arm wrestle," Natsu said, lifting a flaming fist in front of him as though he was trying to practice.

"Maybe if you don't try to burn him while you're at it," Lucy muttered. She smiled when Natsu gave her a thumbs up, then turned to the kitchen. Gray set his things down and met her at the counter. "Water's already hot," she said. "Just put a packet of cocoa into each cup, and-"

"I've made hot cocoa before, y'know," he chuckled.

Lucy blushed and shook her head, then reached into the oven to grab one of the casserole dishes she was keeping warm. She hadn't really known what to make for breakfast for everyone, or whether or not everyone would be hungry. But she figured, with two Dragon Slayers around, having two full breakfast casseroles should be enough to tie them over until everyone went to the guild around lunchtime.

"I've got some coffee in the fridge for you," she said, smirking over at him. "Don't think I forgot that you don't like hot cocoa."

"It's always too hot."

She snorted and grabbed the plates. "That's kinda the point, Gray."

"Lushy, when are we opening presents?" Happy asked as he flew into the kitchen. "Ooh food! Did you make me fish?"

"In the fridge, Happy," she said, nodding her head in that general direction. It was pointless, she knew. Happy was well-acquainted with where her refrigerator was. He zoomed through the air and opened the refrigerator, diving right into the pile of fish she'd left on a plate for him.

"Fanks, Rushy," Happy called, fish in paws as he went back to the living room.

"Are we waiting for Cobra to get here?" Gray asked.

Her lips pursed and she busied herself with scooping out helpings of her breakfast tots and ham casserole onto the plates. She made sure to scoop an extra helping onto one plate for Natsu. "We can eat first, I guess. Just in case he slept in or something."

"He doesn't really seem like the type to sleep in," Gray said.

Lucy just shrugged and grabbed two plates while Gray picked up two mugs. "On the off chance it happened, I'll give him the benefit of the doubt. But when we're done eating, if he's not here, then we'll get started. And if he shows up, then he shows up."

"You're too nice, sometimes," he chuckled.

Honestly, Lucy questioned just how right he was.


The festivities had already begun when Cobra finally made an appearance. His hands had been so full of bakery boxes that he'd gotten for a pretty decent discount on the wholesale price (he would deny any and all allegations that he'd threatened the woman who ran the bakery on the other side of town), that he'd had to kick Lucy's door just to knock.

Okay, so maybe he'd gone a little overboard on the whole baking shit as a present thing. But he knew his own stomach was occasionally a bottomless pit, and Natsu could put an industrial Hoover to shame with his eating habits. And Erza wasn't much better when it came to sweets.

It was actually Monty who'd been the kick in the ass he'd needed to get out of bed and get a quick shower. The shower was only because when he'd pulled his dick out to take a piss, he could still smell Lucy's fucking sex juices. He didn't even want to chance Natsu smelling it through his clothes. It wasn't like a shower did much, though. The scent of his shampoo and body wash covered some of her pheromones that were left, and then he'd have to just use other stronger smells around them to keep Natsu's nose preoccupied.

Based on the strong scent of sugar and meat and potatoes wafting from under Lucy's door, maybe she'd had the same idea.

He'd kind of been doing everything in his power to ignore her soul that morning. Granted, it had been relatively easy when he was still passed out, but then Monty realized it was 9:30 and remembered how Cobra had showed him what 8:00 looked like on his alarm clock, so they could get to Lucy's on time. Needless to say, the not-so-little python had literally started slithering into his fucking mouth just to wake him up, because Cobra had been awake until nearly six that morning.

Cobra had never before in his life nearly choked to death on a fucking snake.

Lucy finally opened the door, and the scents inside hit him full force in the face. She'd made a breakfast casserole of some sort, and still had more in her oven. He could smell the fish Happy had been eating, and lots of chocolate. That must be the hot cocoa.

"Cobra!" Lucy shouted with a far-too-happy laugh at seeing him. "Come in!"

"What took you so long?" Natsu shouted. He paused a moment later, staring at the stack of boxes Lucy took from Cobra to lighten his load a little. "Whoa, did you rob a bakery?!"

Erza's head perked up, and she turned with daggers forming in her heavy glare. Cobra just rolled his eye. "Calm your tits, Titania. I haven't hurt your precious bakeries."

Lucy passed off the boxes in her hands to Gray, then took the rest from Cobra so he could get his shoes and jacket off. Well, he at least took his shoes off. Monty was still curled up in his jacket, and he knew his little friend needed the body heat right now. "Why don't we pass these out now?" she asked, smiling over at him. "Then you can just relax."

"Whatever," he sighed. He walked over to the couch and took the seat Lucy had vacated. "They're all labeled."

He watched as Lucy and Gray read the labels on each of the boxes, then passed them out to everyone.

"How come Lushy doesn't get a box?" Happy asked.

"I already gave her present to her yesterday," he said with a smirk. He nearly laughed when Lucy choked. God, she was horrible at keeping secrets, wasn't she… Still, Happy was oblivious. And he supposed he could keep questions about what the hell was wrong with their hostess if he just offered the information himself. "I taught her to ice skate."

"So that's why you guys were out there," Gray said, frowning. "Hey, man, I'm sorry I bothered you guys then. I didn't know."

Cobra shrugged. "Not really a huge deal."

Erza gasped, drawing everyone's attention just as Lucy left the room. "Cobra, where did you get these? No one in town makes them…"

Lucy returned with a steaming mug in one hand and a plate piled high with food in the other. She handed both to Cobra, then sat down on the floor just in front of him. "He didn't buy them, Erza," she laughed.

"Did you steal them?" Erza breathed. He nearly laughed when she waffled on whether or not she wanted to know who was stupid enough to hide these treats from her, or punishing him for breaking the law.

"No," he said. Cobra brought the mug to his lips and took a small sip. It burned like hell, but fuck was it worth it. The sweetness of the marshmallows covering the surface of the cocoa coated the inside of his mouth. The chocolate itself wasn't the greatest, but the heat spiraling down his throat and into his stomach definitely helped to combat the frozen state of his body from walking over to Lucy's apartment for this bullshit team thing.

When he finished the mug and set it down, Cobra realized that he'd chugged it all. Maybe cocoa really wasn't that bad, after all.

"I baked all this shit," he said.

Natsu and Happy paused in bringing their own sweet treats to their lips, staring at him in horror. "Is it poisoned?" Happy whimpered.

"No, idiot," he snorted.

"Cobra made the cupcakes for Asuka's birthday, remember?" Lucy asked. When the rest of their team just stared at her, she sighed. That's right. She'd forgotten why he'd even volunteered to do it in the first place. Mira hadn't been around. "Right, you were all at the S Class trials…"

Cobra simply lifted a brow at them. "I was informed I needed a hobby that was legal," he drawled. "I chose baking."

"Isn't that kinda… girlie?" Natsu snickered.

Erza cut off Cobra's snarling reply with a delighted moan. Suddenly, he smirked over to the Fire Dragon Slayer. "Not really. Pretty sure I could get laid in a serious way if I baked for a woman."

Natsu frowned and looked at Lucy. "Is that true, Luce?"

"Wh-What?!" she shrieked. An uneasy, trembling laugh escaped her lips as he kept staring at her. "Why would you ask me that?"

Real fucking smooth, Lucy.

"You're a girl," Natsu said, grinning at her again. "Do girls really like it when guys bake?"

"Moron," Gray muttered. "Why would it matter to you, anyway? You're probably going to die a virgin."

"No way!" Natsu roared.

"Guys, please don't fight today," Lucy pleaded. "At least, not in my apartment!"

Cobra picked up his fork, completely unperturbed by the looming childish battle between Natsu and Gray. He took a bite of the casserole, then glanced at Happy. "You should try yours," he said to the little blue Exceed. "It's got fish in it."

"What is it?" Happy asked. He reached a paw into his little white box and poked at the fish-shaped cookies.

"Catnip and tuna chip cookies," Cobra said. Happy's eyes went wide, and fat tears quickly filled them when he looked from the treats over to the Poison Dragon Slayer who was in the process of shoving an overly large bite of Lucy's casserole in his mouth.

"Oh, are those the ones you were saving that tuna for?" Lucy asked. Cobra simply nodded. She grinned and turned to Erza, blinking in surprise when she saw the Requip mage had three large bakery boxes in front of her. Yeah, he'd gone overboard for both Erza and Natsu. Only because it wouldn't go to waste. "Erza, how about you?"

"Strawberry," she moaned around a mouthful of food.

Cobra swallowed his own bite. "Don't expect me to make this shit for you at the drop of a hat," he warned her. She didn't hear him. Motherfucker. "She's got a strawberry-chocolate meringue torte, some strawberry shortcakes, and this really weird fucking thing I saw once out in Desierto with curry and strawberries. It was a cake, but I turned it into cupcakes to make it easier to eat."

"That's pretty cool, man," Gray said. Honestly, Gray was probably the most normal person on this fucked up team, in Cobra's opinion. He turned toward the Ice-Make mage, then sighed when he realized Gray was naked.

"Get that frosty gummy worm out of my sight," he sneered. Cobra counted down from three, shaking his head when Gray shrieked and went on a search for his clothes. This was sad. The most normal member of the team was a fucking exhibionist who stripped without even realizing it.

What kind of bullshit life was Cobra stuck living?


It was nearing 11 in the morning, and Erza had finally decided it was time to hand out presents. She'd been sitting by the tree, and had apparently deemed herself as the present master for this little event. Not that Cobra really gave a shit either way. He wasn't expecting a whole lot of anything.

He didn't want anything.

He was also going to have to talk with Natsu at some point to let him know that he really didn't have to try and think of something to give Cobra to repay him for the three-tiered ghost pepper cake, or the hot sauce infused muffins. Or the three pounds of cookies that Cobra had baked on a whim, and decided Natsu would be the perfect place to pawn them off. Even Happy felt bad about not getting him anything.

Really, he didn't give a flying fuck. Because he knew that they hadn't known what he would even like as a present. And he knew that Gray and Erza had both assumed he would just downright refuse to show up to Lucy's at all.

Still, as he sat there, surrounded by the rest of the people on this team he hadn't wanted any part in who were all laughing and smiling as they opened small gifts from each other, Cobra was struck with the feeling of just not belonging there. He didn't fit in with them at all. He wasn't being a fucking goober like Natsu was while holding up a bathing suit that Erza had given to Lucy - although, he did take an extra few seconds to appreciate the hot pink straps that made up ninety percent of the thing. That would barely cover her at all…

Nope, he was removing that train of thought from his head entirely.

Cobra glanced down when Monty finally wriggled out of his jacket.

"Present?"

Lucy looked over at just the right time and smiled wide when she saw Monty. "There you are," she laughed. She nodded to Erza, who picked up a small grey box with a bright red bow on top and passed it to Lucy. "I hope you like your present, Monty. Me and Erza had to search everywhere to find the perfect thing for you."

"Mommy and the Titan-lady got me a present?" Monty slithered down onto Cobra's legs, watching with anticipation as Lucy held it up for him to inspect it. "Open it?" Cobra reached forward and lifted the lid just enough for Monty to nudge his snout into the opening. He pushed the box open and stared down at the folded fabric in confusion. "What's my present?"

"He wants to know what it is," Cobra said to Lucy.

She laughed, brushing her fingers along the bright red fabric, then lifted it into the air. It looked like one long knitted fucking sock. "It's a snake sweater," she said. "So Monty won't get cold every time you go out with the weather like this."

"Sweater?"

"Like my jacket," Cobra said. His finger brushed across the scales on Monty's head. "Made just for you."

"Won't I get too big for it?"

"We weren't sure how fast he would grow," Erza said, almost as though she could also hear the worry coiling in Monty's soul, "So I had the woman who knitted this one make him a longer one as well. And she assured me that it will stretch, so he can wear it after he's eaten, too."

"Can I wear it now?"

"Sure," Cobra said, with a small chuckle. "Try it on."

Everyone laughed when Monty slithered into the gift box still in Lucy's hands. His head lifted and he waited for her to stretch the knitted material down the length of his body.

Cobra nearly lost his shit when it was all said and done, and Monty slithered around the box, then looked back at himself, and his little jaw dropped.

"Oh my God, is he smiling?" Lucy cooed. "Monty, you're so adorable!"

"He is kinda cute in that thing," Happy said. "Oh! Lushy, can Monty have his stocking?"

Her lips pursed in confusion, but Gray leaned over and grabbed Monty's stocking off the wall where Lucy had hung it on a little plastic hook. "Happy told us on the way over," he said to Cobra as a vague explanation. "Hope it's alright."

Cobra frowned at the stocking, then listened in on Gray's soul, to what he wasn't saying out loud so Monty would be none the wiser. Finally, he smirked. "Yeah, it's fine."

'I didn't put anything in the stockings…'

"Monty, you've got another present," Cobra said softly.

"This one is from me," Happy interjected.

Monty turned toward the stocking, and Cobra set his hand on Gray's arm to make sure he wouldn't move. They all watched as Monty's head disappeared inside the stocking. Cobra shifted Gray's arm a little to shake the stocking, and Monty's head shook one way and another, then finally withdrew with a dead mouse clutched in his jaws.

"Tell the stupid cat I love it! It was still moving. We killed it together!"

Cobra couldn't stop himself from chuckling. "He says he helped you kill it, Happy," he said, shaking his head. "And he loves it."

"Can I eat now?"

Cobra nodded and picked Monty up. He knew that no one else would be able to do it. Not while his little snake had prey in his mouth. This was one of the few times instinct took over for Monty. If someone touched him, he'd more than likely strike to protect his food.

"Where are you going?" Natsu asked.

"Bedroom," he said. It took a little maneuvering to step over Lucy and not slip on all the wrapping paper on the floor. "He likes eating in the dark."

"Oh!" Lucy scrambled to her feet. "Lemme clear out a space under my bed for him." Not smooth in the slightest. It wasn't like he couldn't clear out a space under her bed on his own. Still, Cobra didn't react to her accompanying him.

He set Monty on her bed and grinned when his little friend shook the mouse again. Just to make sure it was extra dead, he already knew. Lucy crouched down on the floor and rummaged under her bed for a moment, then pulled out a black gift box. She set it on the bed, and he transferred Monty to the dark space under the bed.

They stayed there with Monty for a silent moment, listening to his sweater slide across her floor. Lucy's lips curled in a devious smile while pushing the black box closer to Cobra. "That's weird," she said. "Santa put your present in my room instead of under the tree."

He blinked repeatedly, staring at the box as though a demon was resting inside, ready to eat him alive. Why the fuck had she given him a present? Sure, he'd given one to her, but she wasn't supposed to give one back. And she was giving him this after they'd fucked? Was this her way of telling him that she was lying when she said it was just a one time thing?

Goddamnit, was she trying to get something more out of him?

She patted his shoulder and walked back out into the living room, leaving him staring at the box. Was she trying to win him over with this?

'... Glad I used some of the money from that mission to get him something. Especially since the rest of the team dropped the ball… Gonna have to talk to them about that… Cobra's part of the team. Part of the guild. We should treat him just like anyone else…'

Thank fucking god. This had nothing to do with her screaming his name the night before. She'd been planning on giving this shit to him already.

Honestly, he blamed Angel for his reservations. She'd been a clinger after they'd fucked years ago. And he understood why she'd been like that - she'd wanted to hold onto the idea of someone not hurting her and calling it intimacy - but that wasn't what he'd wanted from her. It wasn't something he could've given her either.

Not with the way her soul was.

Cobra finally let out a long, slow breath, and grabbed the box. He sat down on the floor and set it in his lap, then slowly opened it. Shocked was the only word to describe how he felt when he saw the contents nestled in dark purple tissue paper. A pair of black leather gloves sat on top of everything. His fingers lightly brushed the leather, marveling at the softness before he picked them up and tucked them inside his jacket.

He moved a layer of tissue paper and found a couple horror movies that Lucy had mentioned to him before, and a card for Brewster Merriweather's Nursery located in a small town just outside of Magnolia. On the back of the card, Lucy had written down a number of toxic plants with a note saying those seeds were in stock, and they were expecting him to stop by sometime. There was another layer of tissue paper that he shifted to the side, his eye widening and his mouth watering when he saw a Chocolate Lover's Cookbook that advertised over 450 pages of recipes with illustrations. His fingers brushed across the gold leafing on the pages, and he flipped through a couple to find full color images of dozens of chocolatey treats.

There were no words Cobra could think of to express how he felt. He was truly speechless. Because he'd never expected to get any gifts from anyone, let alone things that he could use or would enjoy. He'd been meaning to buy a pair of gloves to keep his hands warm, but he'd never gotten around to it. Lucy knew that, and she'd gotten them for him.

He wasn't sure how difficult it would be to start growing his own poisonous plants, but that would make getting poison easier for him.

He already knew that she would want to be there when he watched the movies, but these ones… They were his. It wasn't a movie he was borrowing from her, or watching on the movie channels. He owned these now…

And the recipe book… Well, that was a given. He didn't own any recipe books just yet. He got almost all of his recipes from watching a program and copying it down, or trial and error.

"Monty, come out to the living room when you're ready," he said. Cobra put everything but the gloves back into the box and set it on Lucy's bed. He'd grab it later on before going home. There was no reason to take it out where the others were. He was sure she'd hidden his gift because she'd assumed he either wouldn't show up or that the others wouldn't get him anything. She was probably trying to save everyone's feelings.

'This is the way we eat the mouse… Kill the mouse… Maim the mouse…'

Good fucking lord, Monty was adorable. With a shake of his head, Cobra stood and left her bedroom, then took his seat on the couch again. Natsu and Happy had been tasked with cleaning up the wrapping paper - most likely because Happy's claws had shredded it and turned the shit into confetti - and Erza was putting her presents into her Requip dimension one by one. Gray had lost his shirt again in the time Cobra had been gone, and was on the hunt for it. And Lucy was taking dishes to the kitchen.

Cobra noticed his empty cocoa mug was still out, so he picked it up and took it to the kitchen. He stopped next to Lucy, handing her the mug. She didn't look at him, simply smiling while taking the dish and setting it into her sink full of bubbles.

"You don't have to say thank you to Santa," she silently told him. "Being a good little boy is all Santa really wants."

When she glanced at him, then winked, he couldn't stop himself from laughing. Hysterically. It drew the rest of the team's attention, and he was sure he heard something from Happy about how Cobra had lost his mind, but he didn't care.

She was such a fucking pervert.

"I think you owe me more cocoa for that one," he whispered to her when he'd finally calmed down again.

"I can make you some right now," she said, but Cobra shook his head.

"Later," he said. "Movie night?"

Her cheeks flushed slightly, and she dropped the cup in her hands back into the sink when her mind began to race from the depth of his voice. Interesting. Just whispering was enough to remind her of the way he'd sounded the night before, which brought back other memories of how it had felt to have her arms pinned to his wall, hearing the dresser banging the drywall.

He was going to have to earmark that little tidbit of information, and use it to his advantage some other time.


And that's that! I seriously hope you guys enjoyed this chapter. I've been using every spare moment the past couple days to get this thing finished.

I also want to give MadSoullessQueen a huge shout-out for helping me decide what I should do with the smut. That whole first scene was plotted out very differently (and I actually gave a little nod to it when Cobra was thinking about how he'd imagined him and Lucy hooking up - against her door, etc.). So, because the sex scene no longer meshed with my original plotting, I was flying by the seat of my pants. And then I ended up outlining a much longer sex scene. When talking with Mad about it, she helped me realize I was overthinking it, and I needed to refocus on the tension that's been building up to this point. So, I snagged about half of the outline and set it to the side to use later.

I'm much happier with the smut now that I've done that.

I know you've been waiting for this chapter for forever, so I seriously hope it was worth the wait!

Day 5 of CoLu Week is going to be another chapter on Heavy Price, but it might be posted late.