The funny thing is that Natsu doesn't realize that he likes her until someone else does.

It's a quiet day in Fairy Tail- well, as quiet as it gets for Fairy Tail, anyway. Erza and Gray have left for some odd mission of theirs that just has to be done without him (Natsu remembers the look Erza gave him after a recent fight of his with Gray. He still has nightmares from it). It's a busy day; everyone seems to be out doing something.

This wouldn't be so bad, normally- after all, Natsu is usually one of the people out and about. But today, it is Lucy instead of him, and this bothers Natsu because it is not normal. Lucy is supposed to be with him when she goes out to do something.

It takes him exactly five hundred sixty two seconds (which is a new record) until Natsu can no longer take it and storms out of the guild, muttering under his breath about annoying blondes, and such.

Mirajane, who is cleaning the bar as usual, chuckles to herself knowingly.


He finds her at a café at all places. A fucking café! No, he's not pissed because the weather is amazing and contradicts his foul mood. He's not ticked off because the café doesn't serve his favorite drink (if you're wondering, it's not a tall, half-skinny half-1 percent extra hot split quad shot- two shots decaf, two shots regular- latte with whip cream. That's Lucy's. And don't ask how he remembers all that. Or why, for that matter).

He's ticked off because she's with a guy. Natsu doesn't know why that's what sets him off, but it does anyway. He just knows that that guy's hand was way too close for comfort. But of course, Lucy seems perfectly comfortable. She's laughing, smiling, drinking out of a cup which is probably a tall, half-skinny half-1 percent extra hot split quad shot- two shots decaf, two shots regular- latte with whip cream. It irritates Natsu just thinking about the fact that the guy probably knows her favorite drink now. He probably won't even remember it. He doesn't deserve to sit across from Lucy, to flirt with her like that, and especially not to lean in towards her like that.


She looks up, mid-sentence, and he blinks, almost forgetting what he was about to say, because her look is so innocent and surprised and pretty (how did he not notice that before?), but then he spots the guy sitting across from her. So he doesn't forget, and gives the guy a look equivalent to Erza's death glare.

His response is similar to that of a whimpering school girl. Natsu is pleased.

"What are you doing here, Natsu?" Lucy sets down her drink (a tall, half-skinny half-1 percent extra hot split quad shot- two shots decaf, two shots regular- latte with whip cream. He can smell it now). "Why aren't you at the guild, doing a mission, or-?"

"You're supposed to come with me," Natsu says gruffly. "Why are you here, goofing off?" His voice is laced with uncharacteristic seriousness. He's not sure who's more surprised- him, or her.

"Oh, like you're one to cast stones!" Lucy stands up, abruptly furious. "Why does it matter to you anyway?"

"It matters," Natsu growls, "because you're not supposed to be hanging out with douche bags like him!" He jabs a finger carelessly.

"For your information," Lucy seethes, "his name is Tommy. And he happens to be a nice guy!"

He steps closer to her. "Oh, so things like it have names, do they now?"

"Since when did my dates become any of your business?" Lucy says, and Natsu finds him self deaf to everything she says after that, because she's on a date with this guy. Since when did Lucy go out on dates? And with losers named Tommy with bad haircuts who probably couldn't remember a girl's favorite drink?

"-and, Natsu, are you hearing anything I'm saying?" Her voice cuts into his thoughts. She's cute when she's irritated. He blinks once, twice. For a moment, Natsu thinks that he's seen the light- wait, no, that's just the sun glaring in his eye.

"Oh," Natsu says, and abruptly feels like the most thick-headed person in Magnolia. Which he probably is. But he could have at least figured something like this out sooner. He thinks Lucy is pretty. Was he always too busy hungering for battles to notice her?

Yeah, pretty much. From the look Lucy is currently giving him, Natsu thinks he would rather battle a million Gazilles and Grays right now. The blonde doesn't look very happy.

"What do you mean, 'oh'?" Lucy jabs his chest with her pointer finger. It sends tingles up his spine. Oh, man, he did not just think that. That is so gay. Like, Gray stripping kind of gay. Not cool.

"Lucy," Natsu says, and his voice is deep. Husky. He's almost proud of the reaction it gets from her- her chocolate eyes visibly widen. Is that a blush he spots? Jeez, she's an easy blusher. "Let's go."

"Who is this," Natsu hears the sissy boy (what was his name, Timmy?) speak for the first time. "Your boyfriend?"

"No," Lucy says at the same time Natsu replies, "Yes."

There is a moment of awkward silence between the three before Natsu grabs Lucy's arm and hightails it out of there.

He makes it all of about halfway back to Fairy Tail when Lucy manages to twist, dig in her heels, and it's suddenly a lot harder to move the small little blonde. Natsu thinks that she'd weigh a lot less if her breasts weren't so freakin' large. But he can't bring himself to mind that much.

"NATSU!" Lucy squeals. "What are you doing? That was my first-!" She suddenly cuts off. Natsu stares at her for five seconds.

"First…?" He encourages impatiently.

"Well…" She fidgets. Natsu thinks it's adorable and stupid. Mostly stupid (lie). "It was… my first… um, well…" He discards that thought because all of a sudden he just wants her to get it out already.

Natsu crowds her. He corners her against a tree, narrows his eyes, and hisses, "if you don't tell me within the next minute, I swear I will set this tree on fire. And then Tracey."

"Tommy," Lucy corrects. Then she eyes the tree and him nervously, and decides to answer. "Well, it was my first… my first…" Her face turns tomato red.

Oh, god, Natsu suddenly thinks. This isn't what he thinks it is, is it?

"HE TOOK YOUR VIRGINITY?" Natsu shouts. The birds on the tree squawk unpleasantly and zoom away. Lucy hammers him over the head with her fist.

"No, you idiot!" She seems appalled at the thought, which is good. Though Natsu doesn't think she could manage a convincing lie, anyway.

"Your first kiss," He guesses again. Lucy shakes her head, and he nods in approval. "Yeah, Tilly was too much of a loser to work up the guts, anyway."

"Tommy is a nice guy," Lucy says scathingly. "I just… don't think that my first kiss would, y'know… be from someone like him."

Natsu momentarily wonders exactly what kind of person she would expect her first kiss from, when Lucy mutters quickly, "that was my first date, Natsu. You kind of… ruined it for me."

Natsu ponders for a moment (he likes that word- he learned it from Lucy. It makes him sound smart and all that shit). "That's it?"

"Yes, Natsu," she says, obviously embarrassed. "Kinda lame, huh…?"

"You kiddin' me?" Natsu snorts. "It's incredibly lame."

Lucy flinches, and Natsu almost regrets saying it. Almost. He doesn't, though, because-

"Don't you think you could do so much better?"

Lucy opens her eyes slowly. Gazes up at him with a kind of emotion he can't describe. He would like to think she's gazing up in wonder. But his brain dryly says it's probably more along the lines of something like Natsu, you are insane.

"He's nice," Lucy says, twiddling her thumbs, looking down, fiddling with her keys, avoiding him. "Good hair, great personality, likes books; he's tall and good looking-"

"You think that Todd was good looking?" He cuts her off.

"Well, Tommy's okay," Lucy bites her lip. "The point is, it was kind of… important for me, y'know? You sort of…"

"Ruined it?" Natsu deadpans. Lucy nods. He resists the urge to go back and murder that Terrell guy. Or was his name Taylor?

"Psh." Lucy looks up when Natsu scoffs in disgust, retreating from her and the tree. He's not quite sure what to say without sounding like a corny moron.

"What do you mean, 'Psh'? I say it's important and you ignore it like it's nothing?" Lucy sounds almost plaintive. It burns.

He turns his back to her. "Look, Lucy. Just… meet me here tomorrow at noon, 'kay?"

"Uh," He hears the confusion at the abrupt turn of events. Ignores it because he usually doesn't notice things like that. "Sure," Lucy says, sounding anything but.


The next day he shows up with a tall, half-skinny half-1 percent extra hot split quad shot- two shots decaf, two shots regular- latte with whip cream.