***EDIT*** This story has been updated slightly since it's original release. Typos have been fixed to the best of my ability, and characters have been changed around to better fit the personalities of the "real life" Fairy Tail counterparts. Enjoy! And please remember if a comment or review seems funny remember it might have referred to the older story
Author's Note: Hello! This is Happycamper999! I am back with an all new Alternate Universe story featuring the character's of Fairy Tail!...and yes, it is a western. I hope you enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own Fairy Tail. It, it's story, characters, settings, and all other aspects are the property of Hiro Mashima. The only aspects of this story I can claim are the plot and the setting for the Alternate Universe.
Fairies of the Wild West!
Chapter One - The Two Brothers
In a land far-far away lies the Kingdom of Fiore! A small peaceful nation of 17 million, and a place filled with magic! …Wait, that can't be right. Let's start over…
Well, it turns out after further investigation we actually are in Fiore, but the setting and time frame still seem a bit off.
Here, Fiore is much like our world's very own United States, a large country that expands over the length of an entire continent. There are many different environments in this Fiore, but for the purposes of this story, we would like to focus on the south western portion of the nation.
Right now, Fiore is in the middle of heavy expansion and industry. "Manifest Destiny" they call it! A moment in time when Fiorens felt that they not only could expand, but they also believed that they were destined to, and eventually that expansion would lead them from coast to coast.
This attitude also helped fuel their western settlement as a whole, and led to the innovation and rise of several large industries like the ever growing Railroad System. Eastern Fiorens would all flock to the desert landscapes of the west on their train carts just to make a better living and to escape the harsh economy in the cities. Despite their desired freedom, the life on the western range was not meant for everyone, and danger lurked everywhere. Then again, there are a million ways to die in the west.
Citizens looking to move out west had to be careful with everything they did. They had to guard their money, their land, their property, and most importantly their families. Laws were very thin in this rugged terrain, and outlaws scattered the landscape in every single corner.
Here we find a large group of infamous bandits that make their living robbing stage coaches and train cars, while also striking fear into the locals' hearts. They are known as the Spriggans, and they are feared all throughout the west. Their long-time leader is a young man by the name of Zeref Dragneel ; a boy with black hair who's known crime all his live, but only uses it to keep himself alive. He travels the region with his 13 loyal followers, including his younger and hot-tempered 10 year old brother, Natsu.
Right now, the Spriggans are getting ready for their next night-time raid, and here we find Zeref and Natsu riding into the next scene to meet up with their nefarious gang of bandits.
Zeref rides horse-back along a dark and narrow canyon of orange rock and sand as the tiny boy Natsu sits in front of his older brother on the horse in pure silence.
"Well, you're not normally this quiet? You usually jump up at the thought of a new raid. And that's saying something since this is our first one in a long time." Zeref tried pointing out the lack luster attitude of his typically rambunctious little brother.
The pink haired Natsu responded with a sigh as he tugged on his trusty checkered muffler. "Yea, I don't know. This stuff just gets kinda old…"
Zeref laughed and smiled. "Well, you'll have to be more specific. The trades of robbing and outlawing have existed throughout all of history. Of course they're old!"
Natsu didn't laugh at the joke. "Yea…hey, why did you start doin' this stuff anyway? I remember you tellin' me you picked it up after mom and dad died."
Zeref smiled again, and slightly turned his head down to better address his younger brother.
"Yea, and you weren't much older than 1. I remember that day…a nasty outlaw came in and cleared the town out. Dad tried stopping him, but he got shot and hanged for trying to fight back. Mom tried protecting us too, but she couldn't make it out either…"
Zeref paused as Natsu collected the all too familiar story. The older brother then continued.
"That's when me and the other Spriggans joined up and left society altogether." He then paused and looked down with a smile. "Lucky for us they didn't mind havin' a baby tag along." He then chuckled as he rubbed his brother's thick head of pink hair, as Natsu had no other choice but to laugh in response.
Natsu then spoke up following the tease. "Yea, but why get into robbin' people?"
Zeref then sighed. "Cause we had no other choice. We were all either orphaned children or homeless adults, and none of us new how to do any real jobs, or how to join society. We just started doing it to survive, I guess."
Natsu paused, and Zeref smiled one last time. "You'll figure it out sooner or later, Natsu…"
They stopped their conversation as they made it to the end of the canyon.
"Here they are." Zeref pointed ahead as they came across the light of a small campfire at the other side of the mountain. When they came around the bend they met up with several members of the Spriggan gang waiting for their ring leader to finally show up.
"Well...what took you two so long?" The beautiful but shrewd bandit, Brandish µ spoke loudly as the other Spriggans joined in with laughter. Despite their own amusement however, the green haired vixen did not looked pleased to see them in the slightest.
"Yea?" Another woman however provided the two newbies with a sly grin. "Did little Natsu have to have his diaper changed?"
The gang sharpshooter, Dimaria Yesta made sure to poke fun at little Natsu whenever she had the chance. She smirked with a tease as she looked to the two brothers.
Zeref chose to laugh, while Natsu turned beat red and ran up to Dimaria while throwing his fists back and forth. "Watch what you're sayin' around me!" He tried to land a hit, but the much taller cowgirl laughed as she easily held him back.
Then the cocky and obnoxious gunslinger with messy black hair, Wahl Icht spoke up with laughter. "Yea, Zeref-y. Why'd you show up so late? We shoulda left by now."
Another man, this one with dark skin and long bushy brown hair, stood up and put his foot down. "No kidding! You always pull this crap whenever we're ready to roll out." This was the stubborn Ajeel Ramel, and he never seemed to like the passive style of leadership his gang captain chose to administer during heists.
Zeref looked puzzled at both of their remarks. "I mean, does it really matter? We made it here after all, and the target hasn't even passed us yet."
They all turned to look downhill into the desert night as they each made out a small black line that stretched the entire length of the cool desert ground, and it appeared to be some sort of rail road.
Then they all heard the familiar noise of a locomotive engine howling from the right side of the desert, and they all round up their things. Zeref then looked forward and yelled out to his band of misfits.
"Alright, let's stick close to the back of the train and keep our distance from the engine. The other Spriggans should see the train by now, too. We'll make a signal to the other side of the valley and meet them at the raid."
They all shouted and ran after him as the Spriggans made their way towards the howling train car.
As they raced downhill they all tried to keep their horses up to pace with the large engine, yet as they came beside the train they noticed it started to slow down.
Zeref cried out first in the middle of all the noise and chaos. "Hold on, they suspect something! This may be our chance to jump it!"
They all cheered as Natsu sat behind his little brother. Although he was young, Natsu had taken part in hundreds of robberies, and most of them involved chasing trains down.
That being said, he had never known one to stop in mid-ride before.
"Huh? Hey, Zeref I don't…" Natsu thought in concern as his older brother laughed.
"Stay quiet, Natsu. We'll talk when this is over. Just keep your hand on that gun." Zeref smiled at the eagerness his little brother was expressing, but Natsu simply sat back with discomfort as he clutched his own little revolver.
After a short ride the train suddenly came to a jolting halt. Then the 8 Spriggans all jumped off their horses and grabbed their fire arms. As they walked the length of the train, they made their way to the first cart behind the engine.
Zeref looked back to Natsu. "Remember, the good loot is always in the front car. The drivers do this so if they need to separate the rest of the train, they can always keep track of the main car."
Natsu looked around with anticipation. "Yea, but what about the drivers, or the guys guarding the loot?"
Zeref smiled as he grabbed his own trusty black and silver revolver. "Well, looks like they're in for a surprise."
The ring leader then signaled to one of his Spriggan mates to open the car door. As the large hunk of metal rolled open Zeref's smile changed into a look of confusion.
Inside the car, he found the other six Spriggans sitting with the loot, each prepping the boxes for their new destination.
Zeref looked on with shock. "Hey, how did you…?"
"Relax…" Said the overly proud and equally beautiful leader of the small train squad, Irene Belserion. "We already made it on board back in the last town…and to be honest we probably had no business taking this cart in the first place." She began to wave her hand to waft away the stench of the stuffy old train car.
Zeref snapped back with a passive attitude. "Well, that's funny. None of this was part of the plan…" He then looked around and saw no other horses. "And you clearly didn't beat us to the punch…"
She then hopped out and looked to her leader with her usual nonchalant expression.
Then, two more shadowy figures came out from the cart and smacked Zeref hard on the back of the head with their rifles. The black haired boy wailed with pain as he quickly fell to the ground.
"HEY!" Natsu cried out with concern, but not before Brandish grabbed his arm from behind. Natsu looked up and saw that she would not look him in the eye.
"Please, just stay quiet, Natsu..." She looked conflicted. Natsu always singled this girl out from the others because she always tried avoiding conflicts within the gang, but her gesture to hold the small boy back from helping his older brother suggested she had ulterior motives.
Natsu looked on helplessly as more men jumped out from the cart, and as they did the last figure emerged from behind the cargo.
He stood well over 6 feet tall and had long shaggy white hair with oddly placed blue tattoos all over his face. His western outfit was all black with a dark cloak and hat and he wore a silver belt. He also carried two large black and blue revolvers, and his dark blue eyes pierced thought the night.
He placed his right hand on one of his revolvers as Zeref began to laugh from the dirt. "Well, shit. If it isn't the demon who took everything I had!" Zeref then smiled sarcastically and turned to his younger brother.
"Get a good look, Natsu. This is what true evil looks like…" His remark was quickly silenced as the white haired figure kicked him hard in the jaw and sent him spitting blood into the dirt.
The man then looked up with a serious expression. "Well, Dragneel, or whatever stupid nickname they call you. It seems like your loyal band of Spriggans has gone out looking for new employment. Now, allow me to relieve them of their failed leader."
Natsu cried out again. "What's he talking about!?"
Zeref smiled through the pain. "Natsu…remember how we never take you to collect our rewards? That's because they all go to this guy…and he seems a bit mad that we haven't found any good jobs in a while…"
The black haired boy then looked up to meet the evil man in the eyes and continued. "…and he's the one who killed our parents."
"Wha…?" Natsu gasped with disbelief. Why would Zeref stoop so low as to take hire from the man that killed his parents? Was he that desperate?
The tall man continued. "Oh you're still mad about that nonsense? No wonder these rumors have been spreading. You have been trying to ditch the group haven't you?" He then laughed as Zeref match his humor.
"You're smarter than you look, Acnologia." Zeref then collapsed as the tall man, now referred to as Acnologia replied.
"That's the Black Dragon to you, you little pest!" He then signaled for his cronies to lift Zeref up and hold him still, and as they did Acnologia raised his gun and pointed it into the forehead of Zeref.
"And I hope you remember it after your little trip to hell."
Natsu cried out with agony as two of the Spriggan men help up his older brother's head. "HOLD ON! ZEREF!"
"You shouldn't be seeing this, Natsu!" Brandish felt slightly guilty and didn't want Natsu to see the incident play out; so she swung around and blocked his vision, and brought him in for a tight hug.
Meanwhile Zeref shook with fear and smiled as he yelled back to his younger brother. "Natsu, remember what I told you earlier…"
*Sob* "Yea…" Natsu cried into the female outlaw's shirt as he couldn't move his arms to wipe away his tears.
"Just keep your hand on that gun."
Well...that was actually sort of heartbreaking. Maybe I can't write this.
Just kidding, it's already finished over on Microsoft Word! Expect me to release one chapter each day! (Unless there's a holiday or freak-event stopping me.)
Be sure to leave comments on the story, and if you enjoyed it look for the second chapter tomorrow! It will also come with a little longer opening note.
(BTW if you don't think you are enjoying it, I please ask you to make it to at least Chapter 3 before you give up...though to be honest I can't force any of you to make that decision, and I will ultimately respect it either way.)