There were several times Lucy questioned her own sanity. Once when she had spent a month's worth of rent on a pair of boots and had to survive on water and bread for the whole three months or when she had allowed her best friend to talk her into running around the campus in just her underwear as a dare in the middle of January.
But she was especially starting to think she had a few screws loose in her noggin now while she was kneeling on all four under the large table in the group study room. Before she could explain why she was in the strange and uncomfortable position, let's rewind a bit.
Lucy Heartfilia, the media student in Magnolia University, had a few embarrassing secrets such as her love for peanut-butter coated pickles, she knew all the little details from Harry Potter Franchise, both movies and books, (she's actually proud of this) and had written several smut fanfictions under the different penname from the one she used in the university newspaper and most importantly, she couldn't say no when a friend asked for help. That was how she had gotten herself into this sticky situation.
If someone asked her who her favorite person in the world, it would be her mother, bless her soul, and the close second would be her best friend, Natsu Dragneel, the lovable oaf who was one of the most popular students in the university. The Criminal Justice student was a social chameleon who could befriend even the most insufferable brute under a minute but he had one little flaw: he's the biggest player Lucy had ever met. What he lacked in having silver-tongue, he made up with his boyish charm and assertiveness.
But she wouldn't call him a fuckboy because she knew under all the playfulness lied a biggest heart for those he cared about and he's as loyal as a samurai. All his conquests knew what they were getting into and knew he couldn't be tied down (his words, not hers) and he was always looking for a new challenge. None of the women could grab his attention for more than a few weeks. After the novelty of the chase had worn off, he would move on to the next woman that came along. That was how they had met actually. He had tried to put a move on her and she had kicked him into next week and somehow, earned his utmost respect. Since then, he was like a puppy, following her around and begging her to be his friend and successfully tore down her guards.
Anyway, she was getting off topic. Back to why she was currently hiding under the desk. Ah yes. It started when Natsu came to her before Christmas break with the ridiculous request.
"You want me to what?"
Natsu poked his friend's bared arm and thrusted his lower lips forward in a pout.
"Pretty please? You're looking extra pretty today."
Lucy slapped his tanned hand and he yelped and rubbed his offended limb although they both knew that didn't hurt at all. She turned her attention back to her computer and drawled out her answer slowly so he wouldn't miss any word.
"I'm not collecting information about the new girl, Natsu. Especially since she's Angel's little sister. That psycho scares the pants off me. Now, shoo. I have an assignment to finish."
That didn't make him back down. Instead, he slammed the laptop shut and sat on the desk in front of her.
"Hey! What the hell are you doing, Natsu? I had spent the whole night writing that 3000 words."
She got an eye-roll from the pink-haired man and she was tempted to smack him.
"Please, Lucy. Only you're anal enough to save the file every ten minutes to make sure you don't lose the file."
Not wanting to wear her glasses more than she had to, Lucy placed her black spectacles on the desk and leaned back in her chair and crossed her arms under her bosom, not willing to admit he was right, of course. But he didn't need the conformation to know he hit bull's eyes. They had been friends for quite some times now.
"Now, back to the urgent issue. Just get me the girl's name and her phone number. I'll do the rest."
"Why can't you ask someone else?"
Natsu pulled both of her pink cheeks and smiled smugly.
"Because, my dear Luce, she's in your elective course and because you're an aspiring journalist. It's in your nature to be nosy."
Lucy gasped and pinched his side, effectively causing him to remove his fingers from abusing her throbbing cheeks.
"What an inaccurate description of every esteemed journalist. I'll have you know I'm not going to be some gossipy writer from some trashy magazines. And one day_"
"_you'll be working for Times. I know, I know. But the point is you obtain information from the source and deliver it to the mass. Same difference."
Lucy's glare became menacing enough to make Natsu squirm a bit. His face lost all of his teasing and smirking left his face and in a blink of an eye, he jumped off the table and dropped to his knees beside her chair. Lucy gripped the arm rest of her chair in surprise.
"Please, Lucy. She might be the one. Do you really want to come between true love?"
A fluffy pink pillow hit him in his head and he heard a sigh from his best friend.
"Oh, shut up. That's what you said about Laki and how did that end again? Oh right. She trashing your place and MINE as well. But fine. I'll help you one last time. But this is the last time, you hear?"
Natsu picked Lucy's petite body from the chair and hugged her to his large frame, twirled them in circle discarding Lucy's demand to put her down.
It had only taken her a few days to get necessary information on the new girl who was quickly gaining popularity like a shiny new toy.
"Alright. So, her name is Yukino Agria and she's studying Arts and Media and wants to be an actress after the college and she's in drama club, no surprise there. And she just recently broke up with her on-again off-again boyfriend, Sting Eucliffe. So, she's a bit vulnerable right now and I already texted you her number."
Natsu snapped his fingers, his onyx eyes sparkling.
"So, in another word, she's ripe to be picked and now is my time to pounce."
Lucy scrunched up her face in disgust.
"Ugh. Boys. I don't even know why I'm friends with you sometimes."
Natsu playfully placed small kisses on Lucy's nose and cheeks, causing the latter to squeal and struggle in his embrace. She pushed his face away with her palm.
"Don't say that, Luce. You know you love me."
"Whatever you say, you monster. Now that you have completely poisoned my delicate sense, get out. I wanna watch Love Actually so, I can believe in love again."
Instead of leaving as he was told to, he sat down on her mattress and smiled brightly at her.
"What part of get out didn't you get?"
Natsu pulled her down to the empty spot beside him on the bed and his long arm reached for her computer on the floor. He quickly typed in the password and her saved screen popped up, including the half-way watched Dramione fan made music video on YouTube.
Natsu arched one of his dusty pink eyebrows and Lucy flushed under his accusing stare and worked up in her defense.
"What? There was a new video for my favorite pair in Harry Potter of course, I would have to check it out."
He just smiled knowingly and opened the new tab to pull up her Netflix account. Lucy hurried to the shared kitchen to grab a bag of popcorn and a couple of Diet Cokes before running back to her seat to see the movie was just starting. She tucked her long legs under her and leaned against his warm chest and got comfortable. Natsu wrapped his arm around her shoulder and kissed the top of her head gently.
"Thanks for your help, Luce."
Lucy nuzzled deeper into his embrace and giggled softly.
"You better not screw this up, Casanova. Or Angel will have both of our asses."
"Sure sure. And if you could put in a couple of nice things about me her way, it would be much appreciated."
As a reply, Lucy elbowed him in his ribs.
The winter break was long and boring for Lucy. She had to fly back to Heartfilia manor so, she could spend "quality" time with her estranged father but to no one's surprise, he was away on a business trip most of the time. So, Lucy spent the whole Christmas Eve evening having a good cry over her favorite seasonally appropriate film - It's A Beautiful Life - by herself followed by The Grinch movie. She didn't like to end her day with a sad note so, she always tried to watch something lighthearted every time after she finished a sad film. Her New Year's Eve wasn't much better. She finished the whole bottle of wine by herself and sang loudly (and possibly off-keyed) to 90s songs in her room.
At exactly midnight, Natsu called her to wish her a Happy New Year and sadly, that was the highlight of her whole break. He had also informed her that he had contacted Yukino a few days ago and things were going smoothly.
So, she wasn't very surprised when she came back from the holiday, Yukino approached her with a couple of questions about her famous best friend. After she had confirmed that Natsu was, in fact, really taken in with the beauty with powder-blue hair, she had skipped back to her seat with a wide smile on her face. Lucy had been quite sure that soon, Natsu would have that girl eating out of his hand.
Satisfied that she had done her part, she made her way to the library to check out the new books that Levy had told her about yesterday. The part-time librarian/ literature student was one of the nicest women Lucy had ever had the pleasure of knowing. They had bonded over their love of books and Levy would call Lucy whenever there was any stock of new books that would interest Lucy.
When she got to the entrance of the library, she found her cute friend in the arms of her much larger boyfriend against the wall. He was whispering something in the bluenette's ear and whatever he was saying had the girl turning crimson. Even knowing she was probably intruding on the couple's intimate moment, Lucy coughed loudly enough to catch the attention of the love bugs.
The scary dark-haired man glared at the blonde and snapped at her, not very pleased getting interrupted but Lucy couldn't care less. The last time she had gone on a date, the brute had actually tailed on her and nearly scared the piss out of her poor date. Needless to say, that date didn't end with a good-night kiss at her doorstep.
"Piss off, bunny."
His girlfriend slapped him in his arms.
The short girl turned and smiled at her, clearly much happier than the heavily pierced man to see her.
"Hey, Lu-Chan. Don't worry about him. He's just upset because I can't make it to dinner date today."
Lucy smiled sweetly at the sulking man.
"It's ok, Levy. I'm sure Gajeel was angry because he was denied his desert. Now, just tell me the direction of this "amazing" book and you can continue smooching."
The red-faced Levy squealed in embarrassment and pointed her the direction but Gajeel ruffled her long blonde hair with a smug smile.
"Stop causing trouble everywhere you go, Bunny Girl. Now, leave us the hell alone so, I can continue snogging my beautiful girlfriend."
Lucy made a face and yelled "Gross!" over her shoulder, walking away.
She found the book faster than she had originally thought but it was at least a few inches higher than she could reach, even when she was standing on her toes. She thought about grabbing a tall ladder, leaned against the bookshelf behind her but before she could even turn around, a long hand grabbed the book.
Lucy turned around to be greeted by the most beautiful emerald green eyes, surrounded by thick dark lashes that made her want to weep in jealousy, a straight nose and sexy mouth curled up at the corner in a hint of a smile. The thick leather-bound book was handed to her.
Lucy smiled gratefully and tucked a lock of her blonde hair behind her eyes and fluttered her eyelashes in what she hoped was a correct way to do when one flirts.
"Thanks. That was very noble of you to help a damsel in distress."
The mystery man chuckled softly and Lucy couldn't help but notice how nice his deep laugh was. Compared to the boisterous laughter of her pinkette friend, his sounded very alluring and mature.
"I don't see any damsel in distress. Just a beautiful girl trying to climb over the bookshelf and thought I should save her from breaking her pretty neck."
Lucy giggled and held out her hand.
"I'm Lucy Heartfilia."
The man's eyes widened in what looked like a recognition although Lucy was pretty sure she had never met the guy before.
"Ah. The beautiful Lucy Heartfilia, the Princess of Magnolia University. The rumor of your beauty doesn't do you justice."
Lucy could feel her cheeks heat up at his praise. Lucy knew she was rather more than okay in her appearance but getting complimented in her face made her feel a little uncomfortable. A large hand enclosed over her small, pale one.
"My name is Charlie Jurener. I'm starting my job today as an assistant lecturer in Linguistic Department."
"It's nice to meet you. I hope your first day has been wonderful."
"It is now."
His hand was wrapped around her for longer than necessary and Lucy was pleasantly flattered. It wasn't every day she met a devastatingly handsome man who also seemed to be interested in her. Most of the guys who hit on her on a daily basis were frat boys with the maturity of a ten year old boy.
The serenity between the two was broken by the familiar loud voice and Charlie dropped her hand. She heard a lot of people shushing her friend and a quieter "sorry" before a larger and warmer hand grabbed her arm. The owner of the hand was bent at waist, appearing to be sweating and taking huge breath. Since he was in the basketball uniform, Lucy guessed he had left in the middle of the training.
"Natsu? What are you doing?"
Natsu stood to his full height, not even noticing the other presence beside his friend. He looked like he had barely escaped death.
"We have to run. Angel is coming after us with a baseball bat."
Or in this case, a nut job with a weapon.
"What do you mean us? What the hell did you do, you idiot?!" Lucy hissed.
Her friend pulled harder on her arm. Another hand placed itself on her shoulder.
"Excuse me. Can you let the lady go? She obviously didn't want to go with you."
Only then, he saw the other man and frowned, looking him up and down.
"Who the hell are you?"
"Mind your language, young man. I'm one of the lecturer of this university."
Natsu looked even more confused but he shook his head, apparently giving no shit about this stranger.
"Look. I really don't have time to argue with you. There's a person on warpath and she's planning to skin me alive. So, could you let go of my friend so we can run to safety? Possibly flee to another country?"
"Don't be so dramatic, Natsu. I'm sure she'll forge_"
"Crap! There she is."
Sure enough. Lucy could see the fuming older girl with the same hair color as Yukino, whose wild eyes was searching for something or someone but luckily, she headed for the other section first. She had abandoned the bat somewhere because her hands were bare and clenched into tight fists.
Natsu pushed away Charlie's hand and pulled Lucy with greater urgency and steadily tip-toed into a small study room.
The room was quite empty since many of the students had still yet to come back from the break but Lucy saw the two familiar heads at the corner. Natsu appeared to have seen them as well because he was now approaching the couple quickly with Lucy in tow.
"Erza. Jellal. We need your help."
The famous couple looked up in surprise. The scarlet haired woman narrowed her eyes on Natsu.
"What did you do now, Natsu?"
"No time to explain. Just hide us somewhere."
While Erza looked like she had more to say, she took a look at the bewildered Lucy and took pity on them both.
"Here. Hide under the table."
Erza moved her legs so, the two of them could crawl into the tight dark spot between their legs and the wall. Lucy opened her mouth to say "hell no" but she knew she didn't have much choice when she heard the loud clinking of heels getting nearer to the room.
Lucy dropped to her knees and slipped between the small opening space created between Jellal and Erza's legs. She could feel Natsu also following her direction and she was pushed into the wall by his much larger body. There wasn't much room to breathe, let alone move at all.
Lucy hissed angrily at Natsu.
"What the fuck did you do, Natsu? Yukino looked happy this morning. What could you have possibly done within three hours for her sister to be out for your blood?"
Natsu tried to wiggle around to get into a more comfortable position but all he could manage to do was elbowed Lucy in her chest and pulled her hair by accident. The blonde punched his shoulder hard and he stopped moving with a muttered apology.
"Our blood. She's out for OUR blood. You vouchered for me to Yukino so, Angel assumed you're my accomplice. I don't know what to say, Luce. I'm just not interested in her anymore. She's gorgeous but utterly boring."
Lucy gasped in outrage.
A heel nicked Natsu's cloth-covered shin sharply.
"Dammit, Erza. It was Lucy who yelled. Stop kicking me, woman."
"Shut up, both of you."
"Hey, Scarlet. Have you seen the pink haired moron?"
Lucy and Natsu stayed still when they heard a husky feminine voice that undoubtedly belonged to the crazy Angel.
Lucy muttered all the prayers she could remember from the Bible under her breath, hoping that the woman would give up and leave. But the Lord decided to punish her for missing all those Sunday Mass because Angel's voice got harsher.
"I know you're lying, Scarlet. A student saw him and that blonde bimbo went into this room just now. Either hand them over nicely or I would turn this room upside down to find them. You don't want to piss me off more than I already am."
Lucy thought of slapping that bitch and she was normally not that much of a violent person.
"I told you I don't know. Now, leave us the hell alone or I'll have to make you."
Lucy smiled in triumph when she heard her friend calmly threatened the other woman in a deadly tone.
"Erza. Calm down."
Erza's boyfriend, Jellal was normally a quiet person but when he talked, everyone listened to him. The man oozed power and authority. They were a match made in heaven. Or hell depending on whether or not you're at the receiving end of their wrath.
There was a moment of silence before someone slammed the desk above where they were hiding and Lucy nearly yelped. Thankfully, Natsu with a quick reflex shut her mouth with his hand.
"Stop playing, Erza. He broke my sister's heart. He's gotta pay."
Lucy gulped. Erza would probably hand them over the silver platter now. The straight-laced woman hated Natsu's wandering ways and personally taught him a lesson or two if she thought he disrespected any woman.
Lucy looked up to Natsu's face. It was really dark but she could still make out the outline his face. He must have seen something on her face because the next thing she knew, he pushed away the chair Erza was sitting on and dragged Lucy out with him as well.
Angel's normally stoic face will filled with rage and had Lucy searching aimlessly for something on the table to defend herself.
"Wait! There's a reason why I broke your sister's heart."
Everyone in the room looked at Natsu who was standing in front of Lucy protectively.
"It's supposed to be a secret that I planned to carry to my grave but I can't help it anymore. I can't deny what I'm feeling and in the process, I hurt your sister and I'm sorry. The truth is…"
They all seemed to be hanging on his every words. Some of them were even moving closer to the group, eager to not miss a single word and which probably was going to be a juicy gossip. In Lucy's peripheral vision, she saw Charlie walking into the room.
Natsu pulled Lucy to his chest and tipped her head back. A pair of deepest black eyes held chocolate brown ones.
"The truth is I'm in love with Lucy."
In front of the completely shocked audience, a pink head swooped down to catch Lucy's coral painted full lips in a kiss.
A/N: Duh Duh Duh. So, I thought I would write a NaLu story this time. It's not going to be a very long fic. And guess who's re-reading all Harry Potter books and completely obsessed with Draco x Hermione pair (Dramione). I'll give you a hint. She has a bad habit of not following a schedule and post her works late most of the time. And here's an air hug to those who's got the answer. =] ;D