Disclaimer: I do not own the Fairy Tail series or any of the characters.
Summary: A collection of Fairy Tail shorts, drabbles, and other curiosities. Latest: "Easy Breezy". It falls to Pantherlily to address a delicate matter. March 5, 2012.
Tell Me a Fairy Tail
Pantherlily hadn't been here long, but already he could tell that there was no place he'd rather be.
The Fairy Tail mages were certainly a lively bunch. The celebration that had erupted to welcome home the white-haired girl who had briefly been his prisoner was proof of that. They'd laughed, and they'd drank, and they'd fought until they were all exhausted, and then they'd fallen asleep sprawled all over the place, like children. Lily hadn't joined in the fighting, but to his chagrin, he'd completely misjudged just how quickly this smaller body would react to alcohol.
Waking up on top of a snoring dragon slayer who was cuddling him like a teddy bear had definitely been a new experience.
Eventually the rest of the guild began to wake up and stumble blearily around, and the noise level in the guild hall steadily rose as their hangovers wore off. These people didn't seem to come with volume control. Or impulse control, either, to be honest.
But it was nice here. The people were genuine, the beer was excellent, and his dragon slayer was acceptably badass, so Lily supposed that he might as well stay.
But if he was going to stay, certain issues needed to be addressed. And now that his headache had finally disappeared, he decided that it was time to suck it up and get it over with. Frowning, he paced the tabletop — the part of it that wasn't covered in scrap metal as Gajeel sat down to lunch — and thought about how to approach this rather awkward subject.
Being a military commander had given Pantherlily plenty of experience handling delicate conversations, because unless they were constantly kept busy, soldiers were forever doing very silly things. The youngest recruits especially excelled at creating the most awkward kinds of brainless trouble. Pantherlily knew how to maintain discipline in the ranks without ever allowing them to see him look shocked, embarrassed, or in need of a stiff drink. He made sure to always appear to be in total control. But he couldn't recall ever having to broach a topic quite like this one with any of his troops.
"Happy," he called, attracting the young exceed's attention. "Come here, please. I'd like to speak with you."
Happy flew over, sucking on the head of a fish that had been his latest rejected gift to Carla, and landed on the table next to Lily. Everything from his poor posture to his slightly vacant expression reminded Pantherlily so strongly of a wet-behind-the-ears recruit that he was hard-pressed not to slip into drill sergeant mode.
"Happy, please take that fish out of your mouth and stand up straight."
Okay, so maybe he couldn't completely suppress his military background, but at least it got some results.
Gajeel's only sign of interest in any of this was a brief pause in his eating before he continued cramming metal down his gullet, chewing noisily with his mouth open. Really, his eating habits were so bizarre that Pantherlily couldn't even bring himself to call them atrocious.
Trying to tune out the chewing noises, Pantherlily clasped his paws behind his back and focused on Happy.
"There is a problem that needs to be addressed, Happy. I realize that you were raised among humans and had no way to compare your habits with those of your own kind, but surely you've noticed... a breeze."
To his dismay, Happy simply looked at him blankly. Of course, it could never be that easy. Gajeel had apparently caught on, however, because Pantherlily heard him snort with humour and choke slightly on his food. He refused to turn and look at the iron dragon slayer, because he knew he'd never keep a straight face if they made eye contact.
At any rate, Happy was clearly clueless. So much for discretion. Lily was going to have to be blunt.
"Happy," he stated again, making sure he had the other exceed's full attention. "You should really wear some pants. For Carla's sake, if nothing else. No wonder she avoids you. How did you manage to visit Extalia and still fail to notice that you are the only exceed who doesn't wear clothes?"
Happy looked down at his body and considered this information very carefully. It took longer than it really should have.
Eventually, however, the message sank in. Happy fled across the guild hall, shouting at the top of his lungs.
"Natsu!" he howled in distress, "Natsu! I'm naked!"
The fire dragon slayer looked slightly surprised as Happy dropped onto the bar in front of him. There were a few stifled giggles and snorts throughout the guild hall, but aside from that the place was far quieter than before. They were obviously all busy listening. So nosy!
"Yeah...?" Natsu said slowly.
"Naked, Natsu!" Happy looked horrified.
"You're always naked, Happy," Natsu replied, scratching his head.
"Why didn't you tell me?!" Happy wailed.
Natsu frowned, clearly bemused by this turn of events. "I thought you knew."
Laughter filled the guild hall.
The noise wasn't quite enough to drown out the voice of the ice mage, Gray, as he mused aloud, "I knew I couldn't be the only one this happens to."
"Gray, your clothes."
Pantherlily felt the table vibrate and turned to see Gajeel pounding on it with his fist, laughing so hard he could barely breathe. But the man managed to gasp in enough air to make one comment before he succumbed to his mirth.
"My cat is such a shit-starter! Fucking awesome!"
This guild was such a strange place. A place where a man cried with happiness over "his cat", where friends showed their affection through bar fights, where people ate metal or fire or drank their own weight in booze and didn't die from it, took their clothes off for no reason, or just didn't wear any to begin with. It was unspeakably bizarre.
Pantherlily loved it.
A/N: Well, this is the first of (hopefully) many small tales. I always like to have a collection of short, stand-alone stories on the go. It gives me a place to house fics that are too short or not quite strong enough to merit their own distinct story. It's a place where I can experiment with the little ideas. Hope you liked this first instalment!