Natsu lay on the bed sleeping, face and body covered in bandages. Lucy sat next to him, watching over him. He had gone and done it again. He had overexerted himself again.

The enemy was a tough one, although Natsu would claim otherwise. Natsu had to go full out on him, and only after Lucy had dealt with the enemy she was facing, did she see Natsu deliver his final blow.

Although she would reprimand him for going overboard, she was always impressed by how powerful he was. His attitude of new giving up had inspired her so much. He had made her the person she was today.

But this time, Natsu had taken serious damage. Pangs of guilt hit her as she recalled why he had a hard time in the first place. He had taken a blow for her in the beginning, when she wasn't on her guard.

"Lucy, watch out!" He shouted. Her eyes widened in alarm as she realized that she was about to get hit, but Natsu thrust his hand forward and took the attack.

He had done a good job of hiding his pain throughout that battle. He lay on the bed of the hotel they stayed at, with a bandage covering his hand, on his forehead, cheek and torso.

Wendy had cast a healing spell on him, and the little sky dragon slayer had assured him that he will be fine. Just in case, she had sent Happy to fetch a medicinal herb that would ensure faster recovery, from Porlyusica.

Lucy looked worriedly at Natsu. She knew he was just sleeping, and that he'll definitely be alright. He would wake up with that toothy grin and begin ridiculing her in no time.

But she still couldn't help but feel miserable. This wasn't the first time Natsu had become her human shield. He had covered for her so many times, almost shielding her with his own body.

Why did this always happen? She hated seeing him down and beaten. Her image of Natsu in her mind was always an upbeat and active Natsu. He was strong and courageous but also reckless. Nothing could ever bring him down. He was Natsu.

He had taken the hit so many times for her. He was always looking out for her, and had always been there for her in all the difficult times.

She was annoyed; by her own weakness, her own incompetence; her inability to protect Natsu for once.

She wished she had a celestial spirit or herself possess healing powers that would make all his wounds disappear in an instant.

Her dwindling mind faintly went back to a memory in her childhood. She remembered crying endlessly when she had scrapped her knee from a terrible fall. After having wrapped the wounded area with a bandage successfully, her mother wiped her tears and softly kissed her knee.

"There, mama kissed it better. Don't cry anymore dear," she smiled, holding her close. "Everything will be alright."

And even though Lucy knew that her mother didn't have any healing powers, she was already feeling better.

It had been one of the memories she had treasured very dearly.

If only she could do something for Natsu...

Lucy gently lifted Natsu's calloused hand, wrapped in bandage. And before she knew it, her body had acted on its own, her lips pressed against his knuckles.

Lucy got the fright of her life when Natsu's deep voice rang in the previously silent room, "What are you doing?"

Lucy felt all the blood in her body rush to her face, at a loss for words. She stumbled upon her words, mumbling out an excuse.

"I- uh- I was just following what Wendy told me to do!" Lucy laughed nervously.

Natsu shuffled, sitting upright on the bed, much to Lucy's protest, as he was supposed to be resting.

"Oh yeah? And what's that?" Natsu inquired further, his deep eyes pouring into hers.

Lucy jumbled for an explanation, "Um, well, she said that doing this helps the wound heal faster!" Lucy almost wanted to slap herself for that lame excuse. There's no way he would buy that. Natsu may act like an idiot but he was sharp.

She was stunned when Natsu, instead of teasing her, simply replied, "Is that so?"

Lucy internally sighed with relief. Who could have guessed that Natsu could be that gullible? However, her sense of relief did not last long.

Swinging his legs to the side of the bed, Natsu pointed at his toned arm, where his guild mark was placed, a gauge taped to the wound. "Could you try that technique on this spot too? It's been killing me for a while now." He asked, blinking innocently. Despite that, he smiled mischievously, almost as if he was onto her lie.

Lucy's blush was back, ashamed of herself to make up such a stupid excuse. While she was worried to death about him, there is was, making a joke out of her again. She wouldn't let him win again! There was no turning back now.

Natsu grinned, "Just kidding. Thanks anyway, Lu-" he froze as she stood up abruptly from her chair, and kissed his arm.

Pulling away slowly, Lucy asked, "D-Does it hurt anywhere else?"

His onyx eyes that had turned wide in shock, now recovered and turned into that serious look when Lucy could never figure what was going on in his head. A little hesitantly, but hopefully, he pat his shoulder.

Lucy shifted silently and placed a small kiss on his shoulder. She noticed the scar he had on his neck, which stayed hidden underneath his trusty scarf. Without warning, she pressed her lips against his neck, enticing a jump on Natsu's side.

She turned back to Natsu, who now looked slightly flushed, and he gestured at his forehead. Ever so gently, she pushed the bangs that were hanging on his forehead and kissed it, letting it linger for a few extra seconds.

Lucy's heart was hammering in her chest, a blush rising up her neck as she asked once again, "Is there anything else that hurts?"

Slowly and hesitantly, Natsu raised his hand to his lips. Lucy stared at him for a few seconds, before smiling and giving in to him. Her eyes fluttered close as she closed the gap between them, and they melted in a soft, sweet kiss. His left arm shuffled to her back, a spark in the touch. The feeling made Lucy's previously nervous heart, soar. She was happy and she felt alive.

As they broke away, Lucy smiled up at Natsu, "Are you feeling better now?"

Natsu grinned from ear to ear, the very smile she had grown fond of, his eyes reflecting affection and softness. As he pulled her closer for another kiss he whispered, "Never felt better."

a/n: Many Many Happy returns of the day to Sachiko Saki! Hope you enjoyed that NaLu fluff! Have a great day sweetie! :)