Chapter 67: Putting your Affairs in Order
"Fairy Tail"- Regular Speech
'Fairy Tail'- Regular Thoughts
"Fairy Tail"- Flashbacks
"Fairy Tail"- Dragon/Demon/Monster Speech/Names of Spells
'Fairy Tail'- Dragon/Demon/Monster thoughts
Fairy Tail- Stating of the year or a place
Summary: I was told I was alone...in a world where NAKAMA were every person's desire. Then HE found me, he said he saw great potential in my small body and he raised me. Because of him I lived...I learned...and I finally found someone I could call nakama. Even if he didn't call me the same. That is why I will do whatever I can to live up to his name. As the son and dragonslayer of the greatest being I have ever met. Acnologia, the Black Dragon of the Apocalypse.
Cemetery, Magnolia Town, Fiore
The afternoon sky would normally be bright and sunny at this time of day however, even the forces of nature knew that it wasn't such a time to reflect joy and happiness.
Dark grey clouds blotted out the sun as they lay overcast.
It had been exactly two weeks since the Tenrou Island battle. Many lives had been lost to what had been basically a small-scale war between the forces of Fiore and Fairy Tail, and Grimoire Heart. Due to the intervention of the three demonic magic beasts that assisted in their retreat, the level of casualties had not been as high as what it could have been however, the number of the dead was still a significant amount numbering in the hundreds. The Magic Council and King Toma E. Fiore were present for the debriefing given by the Grand General of the kingdom.
The news of Grimoire Heart's defeat had been broadcast throughout the kingdom on every Lachryma Vision channel available by King Toma himself. He spoke of the valiant efforts of the Rune Knight Corp and the mages of Fairy Tail at Tenrou Island. He thanked the other Ten Wizard Saints for their parts in acting as precautionary fighters should the battle have spread in-land. Toma's speech then took a drastic somber turn as he informed the kingdom of the many lives lost to the dark guild in the efforts to defeat them, but while it was saddening to hear of the deaths of the many soldiers that died that day, the effect paled in comparison to the report of the death of Makarov Dreyar.
The fifth strongest man in Fiore.
The Third Guildmaster and Titan of Fairy Tail.
Many thought Makarov would have succumbed to his heart condition or simply see his last days in peace from his bed surrounded by his guild and loved ones before passing away from natural causes. For such a prominent figure to have died in battle, it was a difficult thing to comprehend for the people of Fiore.
Within the week after the announcement was made, a formal service had been carried out by King Toma for the fallen Rune Knights and Makarov in Crocus that was broadcast across the kingdom.
A secondary funeral, the one which was currently being held, was made specifically to honour Makarov. In attendance was what seemed like the entirety of Magnolia Town itself. Hell, given the sheer volume of people, it seemed as if the the attendants came in from across the entire kingdom. Possibly some members may have come in from beyond Fiore's borders.
There were initially hushed whispers of conversation throughout the mass of people, but a deafening silence fell over them as the mourning people of Magnolia and beyond as the former second generation dragonslayer walked out from the frontal area which was reserved for close friends and family.
Laxus's sharp eyes, once vibrant and full of life, were currently dulled and half-lidded.
The blonde lightning mage turned and glanced up at the immortalised image of his grandfather behind him.
Forged by both expert sculptors and users of Earth Magic, the white marble statue of the Titan of Fairy Tail rested atop a ten foot pillar of black and grey marble. He was depicted with his legs spread shoulder width apart in a strong and stable stance. His left arm was placed at hip level with a staff resembling the wooden one he carried, the symbol of Fairy Tail making up the head of the staff. His right hand was positioned directly skyward with his index finger and thumb carved to resemble the backward 'L'. Clad in his formal cloak that he wore as a Wizard Saint, the stiff marble was carved with such skill that it resembled the cloth billowing in the wind. His face was stern, but though the eyes of Makarov's statue held the strength that made his recognised as both the guildmaster of Fairy Tail and a member of the Ten Wizard Saints, there was a gentleness to them that reflected his grandfatherly disposition.
(Insert Music: My Dress Up Darling OST- Kimi Ni Tsutaetai Koto Ga Arunda)
Laxus stared silently at the statue as if hoping it would suddenly come to life, shrink down and become his grandfather's laughing visage. However, the fantasy remained just that as his gaze shifted to the rectangular shaped hole, his grandfather's casket suspended over it by the pulley system which would place it six feet under the surface.
With a deep inhalation through his nose, Laxus unleashed a deep sigh. He calmed his thoughts and cast his gaze over the crowd.
"Ummm...I just...I firstly just want to say thanks to...to all of you who came out here today to celebrate the life that Jiji had and to wish him goodbye." He adjusted his tie slightly and cleared his throat. "The amount of you that are here shows just how much of an effect Jiji had on not just those who are close to him, but to those who may not have even knew him personally. Makarov Dreyar was many things...A powerful mage. A guildmaster. A Ten Wizard Saint. The Titan of Fairy Tail. He held many titles, but despite his wisdom and power, he was a man who treasured family and bonds above all else. A father and grandfather figure to many, that belief in the power of love and friendship helped forge him into the man he was and guide us younger folk of Fairy Tail."
Laxus gripped the edge of the podium he stood behind a bit tighter, splintering the wood slightly.
"I watched the funeral that King Toma gave to Jiji and while I know he was a pretty popular guy and has been in service to the kingdom for longer than a lot of us here have been alive...to see the crowd he pulled, even if it was for an empty casket and done out of formality it was truly heartwarming to see." The small smile on Laxus's face quickly fell as he looked at the small crowd before him. "But then I saw the Rune Knight Corp that carried that casket. I watched the brass and bagpipes play. I watched the cannon salute. Some cried and some remained stone-faced, but I knew...Jiji was seen as a powerhouse and an authority figure. A soldier of the kingdom. So even though he was respected, not knowing how to honour him except as a soldier showed that not many outside of Fairy Tail truly knew Jiji."
Many faces amongst the crowd couldn't help but look away from the Titan's grandson.
"This was originally supposed to be a smaller ceremony involving those of us at Fairy Tail and Jiji's closest friends. I have no control over the people of this town that Jiji loved so much, and he touched each and every one of you so who am I really to deny you the feeling to want to pay your respects and say your goodbyes, but at the end of the day...you don't know Jiji." Embarrassment decorated the faces of the crowd, some bearing feelings of anger as well for being placed in the generalised category of people that Laxus was creating. "So as his grandson...let me tell you who Jiji was."
The blonde pointed at the small casket.
"My relationship with Jiji was a complicated one. My Tou-san, Ivan Dreyar, was ex-communicated for criminal acts against the guild and Jiji was there for me. I was spoiled and doted upon like any grandfather would their grandson, but I was pretty messed up as a kid. I was cocky, insulting, hard-headed...Though apparently Jiji was the same way."
A few laughs echoed throughout the cemetery, particularly those from Fairy Tail, the Fiorean guildmasters, the Ten Wizard Saints and the older or retired Rune Knights that were present in the crowd.
"He was an alcoholic who loved rum and whiskey. The only challenge to our own alcoholic, Cana Alberona."
Cana laughed lightly as she dabbed at her tears.
"He was stubborn to a fault. He knew when he was wrong, but even then he would fight tooth and nail to the point where blows might be exchanged just to get his point across. He was a goddamn pervert too. A lot of magazines have the girls of Fairy Tail portrayed in their issues, and Jiji held on to those things as if he were a man in the desert dying of thirst! Maybe that's why he favoured Mira so much...or why he took such an immediate liking to Lucy."
The two young women in question sweatdropped and laughed, but didn't even make a move to deny the Lightning mage's words.
"Though he would condone our violence and destructive habits as a guild, he would always settle the arguments with violence of his own." Laxus laughed. "If violence isn't the answer then you aren't using enough of it was always one of his favourite sayings and given our guild's reputation, it would definitely be one of our guild's mottos!"
The crowd of Magnolia natives nodded in agreement.
"So you may think Jiji is some great and amazing mage who can fell armies with but a single swipe of his hand, or an elderly scholar whose wisdom surpasses even some of the kingdom's greatest minds..." Laxus's voice dropped in volume slightly as memories of his grandfather flashed through his mind. "But he was human. He may have had many great aspects, but he boasted just as many flaws. One aspect of him that some would call his greatest strength, others his fatal flaw, was that he would make it a rule to never kill. He fought many battles, took part in wars on the frontlines and even though he was placed in those kinds of scenarios, he took the teachings of passivity and preserving life from Mavis Vermillion, our First Master, to heart. But even Jiji if he wouldn't take a life, that wouldn't stop someone else from taking his...for though he was the Titan of Fairy Tail...he was always human. And humans die."
Tears began to flow from many eyes at that point.
"We are all privileged and humbled to have lived a life touched by Makarov Dreyar. He shared his time and gifts with us freely, and showed us unfailing courage when it came to doing what needed to be done for the pure sake of helping people. But one of his greatest teachings is when it came to what it meant to wield power and following ones own belief. He said that any power that surpasses reason still comes from reason. Magic isn't some kind of miraculous power. It is a talent that only works when the flow of energy inside of us, and the flow of energy in the natural world are in perfect synchronization." Lightning sparked from Laxus's fingertips as he raised his hand. "To perform magic, one must have a strong mind and the ability to focus. It shall take over your being and pour over your soul! If all we do is worry about rules, then our power will never progress. Follow the path you believe in!"
Laxus raised his arm skyward.
The mages of Fairy Tail followed suit. The guildmasters of Fiore, some having once been Fairy Tail members, made the same hand gesture. The citizens of Magnolia Town mimicked the motion and soon the entire cemetery bore a crowd of people with their hands positioned in the shape of a backwards 'L'.
Fairy Tail Guildhouse, Magnolia Town, Fiore
The guild was quiet for what could have been labelled a once in a blue moon moment.
The members of Fairy Tail lay scattered about the guild hall. The solemn atmosphere was so thick you could have cut it with a knife. Mirajane navigated the hall as she handed out mugs of ale to each of her guildmates. Soft thanks were given to her from those that were able to muster up the nerve to do so, but otherwise they simply offered her silent nods or didn't speak at all.
As Mirajane finished handing out the alcohol to the others, she began to fill her own. She watched as the golden coloured liquid flowed from the tap, the white foam and bubbles swirling around until it reached the suitable level she had ingrained into her mind from years of bartending.
The blue-eyed Demon of Fairy Tail took a deep breath, the shaky exhale seeming to echo. Her grip was just as shaky as she took the cold glass into her hands. Blue eyes were shielded from view by her bangs but the glint of the tears that threatened to fall once again peeked through the shadows.
The silence of the guild hall shattered suddenly as the sound of Fairy Tail's wooden doors creaked open. A lengthy shadow was cast across the floor as the light outside flowed over the seemingly large figure however, the figure was revealed to be quite short as the guild members took in their guest's familiar appearance.
"Hmm." The chef of 8-Island restaurant hummed as he walked over to the table wear the S-Class mages of the guild were seated.
Gildarts, Laxus, Erza and, their newest addition to the S-Class ranks, Gray turned to the elderly man with small smiles as he gave them a friendly wave and smile of his own.
"Afternoon everyone!" Yajima greeted the four before turning to Gray. "Gray-kun, I know a lot has happened and so there was never really a right time to tell you, but congratulations on passing your S-Class trials."
"Thank you, Yajima-Ji." The Ice Godslayer nodded in thanks.
"I think it's more of accomplishment that his suit stayed on for the whole funeral service and even now."
"Oh shut up, Gildarts." Black eyes rolled in their sockets.
Gildarts's joke caused those at the table and within earshot to chuckle. True to his words, Gray's suit was indeed still on his person with not a button out of place.
"Yajima-san, not that we're not happy to see an old friend of the guild's, but..." A crimson eyebrow arched in curiosity as the swordswoman of Fairy Tail looked down at him. "What are you doing here?"
"I just wanted to pop by my old stomping grounds and see how you youngsters were holding up. I know...the feelings are still fresh even though it hasn't even been a month yet since Makky passed." The former Magic Council looked to Laxus. "Your eulogy speech at the cemetery was really something else. You really made those tears fall. Didn't think you had such a way with words, Laxus-kun."
"Thanks." The blonde smiled slightly before he gripped his mug of ale with a sigh. "I wanted all those people out there to at least understand what kind of person Jiji was and what he truly meant to us at Fairy Tail. I'm pretty sure only a fraction of that crowd will get it."
"People never truly knew Makky as well as those of us who made bonds with him here in the guild."
Both Laxus and Yajima turned towards the sound of the eldest Strauss sibling's voice.
"Mira-chan!" The former member of Fairy Tail and the Magic Council smiled at the white-haired woman. The diminutive man nodded in thanks as he accepted the second mug of ale she was carrying in her hands, keeping her grip on her own. "How's everyone been holding up?"
It was a question he already knew the answer to and so Mirajane could only frown slightly as she gestured to her downcast guild mates.
"It's...It's still a lot to process." Blue eyes then turned away from her friends, focusing once more on the seemingly ever-present closed eyes of Yajima. "But what are you actually doing here, Yajima Oji-san? I know you were a close friend of Master and I appreciate if you came to check up on us, but something tells me that's not why you're here."
The friend of their deceased Third Master gave a small laugh.
"You really have picked up on reading people since you became a bartender, eh Mira-chan?"
"It's a gift." She giggled in reply.
"So what do you have to tell us, Yajima-san?" Erza asked.
The chef of 8-Island looked to Laxus and made a gesture for the younger, taller man to place him atop the table. Once the blonde mage had done so, Yajima gave a small note of thanks before he reached into his suit jacket. Expressions of curiosity and confusion were present on several faces as Yajima withdrew a bright blue lachryma from his inside breast pocket.
"Ahem!" The former Fairy Tail mage cleared his throat loudly, the sound echoing throughout the mostly quiet guild and thus easily garnering the entire guild's attention. "Good day, everyone! Now I know it's been a long and trying time since Makky died, and given that we've just come from witnessing his second funeral...well the emotions are still running rampant in our hearts, but I know that now is as good a time as any to present this to you all here at Fairy Tail!"
"What's that, Yajima-Jiji?" Natsu asked.
"This, Natsu-kun..." He raised the lachryma high for all to see. "This is Makarov Dreyar's last will and testament."
Eyes widened and jaws dropped as the quiet atmosphere quickly became a bit more energetic. Most sat up straighter in their seats while some others actually rose to their feet.
"Jiji's will?!" The son of Igneel exclaimed. "As in..."
"That's right." Yajima nodded in confirmation. "Now as we all know Makky was getting on in years and what with having his heart condition the likelihood of him suddenly dying was always something that could happen. He was stubborn about it when I told him he had to put his affairs in order since we weren't as invincible as we were back in the day. I managed to wear him down somewhat and so we began to running through a few I guess you could call them rough draft wills over the past few years but after the whole debacle involving Edolas those few months ago, he finally put together a small Movie Lachryma to record his final words and decisions."
The guild continued to stare with unblinking wide eyes at the spherical sapphire.
"I know it's a lot to truly accept that Makky's gone, and you all will have your own individual times that it will take for you to completely go through the five stages of grief, but I know what the death of a loved one, especially in a guild setting, can do to it. So while I have every one of you here in one place, I think now is the best time to do this."
"Yajima-san." All eyes turned as they looked towards Lucy. "Yajima-san, I...I can't speak for everyone, but...I'm not sure if I'm ready to see this."
"I say ignore the ones like Heartfilia and just roll the tape."
Shock and anger were directed to the Iron Dragonslayer for his blunt exclamation.
"Gajeel!" Levy snapped at the red-eyed son of Metalicana.
"No, Squirt!" Gajeel rose to his feet, his massive frame casting shadow over her smaller yet defiant form. "Look, that came out wrong!" He pinched the bridge of his nose before taking a deep breath to calm his emotions somewhat. "What I mean is that yeah, some of you guys here aren't feeling like you're to listening to the old man's will because it just means you gotta really and truly accept that he's gone for good! But those of us that were there on Tenrou, we fought the thing that Master became! We told you all about what happened too because you deserved to know how Jiji died on that island, but there's a lot of thoughts in your heads imagining the demon that Jiji became so I think this could help get rid of those thoughts and bring back the memories of what you know the old man to have been like! Yeah sure, like this old man here was saying, everyone's gonna grieve at their own pace, but also you gotta at least hear him out and see what he had to say in preparation for when he was gonna kick the bucket!"
"Gajeel..." The blue-haired Solid Script mage's rage died down near instantaneously.
"Gajeel's right." Erza stated.
"I know I am!"
The redhead nodded to the Iron Dragonslayer.
"While there will be some emotional impact being made upon watching Master's final words, from a logical point as well we need to know what Master's plans are for the guild itself. After all..." Erza glanced to the side as her black dress showed off her bare arms, the dark blue mark of Fairy Tail emblazoned upon her left deltoid. "...we are now currently without a guild master."
Another harsh truth was made to set within the minds of Fairy Tail's members.
Erza turned to Yajima and nodded her head. Yajima nodded back before pumping some magic energy into the lacryma.
The blue orb gradually grew brighter as it activated and a rectangular-shaped magic seal formed in the air. The space within the rectangle began to shift and twist as colours and images began to form. The sounds of static came from the lachryma as the Movie Lachryma's activation began to stabilise. Soon the image in the rectangular magic seal began to shift heavily as the sound of small repetitive impacts were heard.
"Hello...Hello is this thing...Hello is this on?"
The members of Fairy Tail immediately recognised the voice of their Third Master.
"Is this...Is this thing working?" The image of Makarov stepping away from the lachryma greeted their eyes, his expression a mixture of confusion and annoyance as he hummed in thought. He was wearing his casual outfit consisting of a white t-shirt which was worn beneath an open orange jacket, orange pants and his blue and orange striped elf's hat. "Yajima, is it on?"
"Yes it's working!" Yajima sighed from behind the lachryma. "Don't tap it like that you might break it, Makky!"
"Oh you worry too much, Yajima." The Lachryma's images began to shift in an arc-shaped fashion as Makarov was clearly tossing the sphere through the air between hands. "As if I would break this thi-WOAH!"
"By the dragons, give me that!"
The images began to settle once more as Yajima pointed the recording device at the diminutive Titan Magic user. Makarov blushed in embarrassment, his toothy grin threatening to split his face as he laughed at his friend. As Makarov's amusement began to die down, the change in the atmosphere of the recording seemed to be felt even through the magic seal. He scratched his neck and took a few deep breaths.
"Alright let's get all the formal shit out of the way then, eh?" Makarov's voice held a twinge of nervousness as he cleared his throat. "My name is Makarov Zolensky Dreyar. I am 80 years of age and am of sound mind and body. This is a recording of my final will and testament which is to be legally binding upon my death. Any and all prior wills and testaments made are thus revoked and annulled."
Makarov's black eyes shifted up an down in sporadic intervals as he was speaking, seeming as if he were reading off of something. It was likely the layout of a written will and testament given how stiff the wording was.
"All of the rest and residue of my property, real and personal, of every kind and description and whosoever situate, which I may own or have the right to dispose of at the time of my death, I give, devise, and bequeath in equal shares to my grandson, Laxus Yuri Dreyar." The eyes of the various guild members shifted to the electrokinetic mage. It was plainly obvious that Laxus would have been the one to receive their Master's belongings given he was literally his only known living relative. "Should the preceding person die before me, then I give, devise and bequeath the said property to...Levy McGarden as substitute beneficiary."
This particular detail did bring about a more audible reaction from the rest of the guild. Including the person in question.
"Now I don't count on Laxus dying any time soon or dying before me at all, but Levy you're the most sensible one in the guild so I trust you'll know what to do best with my things in the event of anything happening to Laxus. Even if Laxus is still alive and I'm not, I know he can count on you to help him out just in case." A bright smile adorned the Wizard Saint's face, but that smile quickly changed into an embarrassed expression as he scratched the back of his neck sheepishly. "Unfortunately for both you and Laxus, well...according to this will layout, you will also be accepting any and all debt that I have hahaha!"
Laxus and Levy turned to each other, their stares of shock causing many to snicker as they looked back to the image of the laughing elderly man.
"Why are you laughing, Jiji?! You can't just dump your dumb debt onto my lap!"
"Now I've been pretty good at keeping myself and the guild in the black due to the money I get from the Magic Council and from being a Ten Wizard Saint, but there may be a few bar tabs here and there across the kingdom that I may or not have forgotten to pay...hehehe."
"DON'T LAUGH LIKE IT'S NOT A PROBLEM, YOU SHITTY OLD MAN!"
Laxus's body sparked with golden voltage as he glared at his now dead grandfather's recorded image. Makarov's laugh continued to echo throughout the guild hall as he crumpled up the piece of paper he was reading off of and tossed it away.
"Alright now that that's out of the way, let me get to what I actually want to say to all you brats." The amusing atmosphere of Laxus and/or Levy suddenly being given Makarov's debt left the guild as everyone quieted their laughter to listen.
(Insert Music: Demon Slayer OST- Tanjiro no Uta)
"Now first off, if you all are listening to this recording then obviously I'm dead. Now I know you all will be deeply saddened by this, after all I am your favourite-est, most loveable and amazing-est Ji-chan!"
The guild members laughed along with Makarov's recording.
"I'm not going to apologize for my death because given my age and my health, well...it was only a matter of time. I know many of you may not be willing to accept the reality of the situation, but that's just how it is. I've actually outlived so many of my friends and family, hell I've actually lived longer than my father did. So...Grieve. Grieve as you need be, but don't let yourselves be caught up in it for too long. You are my children and I want you all to live the lives that I know you all will succeed at forging for yourselves after I'm gone. As a parent, having your kids being able to stand up on their own two feet is one of the most heartbreaking things to see because it means that they've outgrown you as a parent and they don't need to rely on you as much as they used to...but it's also so satisfying and amazing because you know all the things you've done to help them reach this far have finally come full circle and well...maybe you didn't fuck up that much in raising those brats, you know?"
Makarov's image rippled on the screen as he chuckled.
"My journey...has been quite an eventful one. I've fought for, with and against you brats for so many years and I've had to see all of you brats shed blood for the sake of your dreams and for the sake of the guild. It's not something I like to see, my brats being injured like that, but I know you are all going to be stronger for it when you get back up and go back out to do your missions. I would do anything and everything for you all in this guild that I have happily been able to be a part of and lead for as long as I have, and watching all of you grow up from being those tiny toddlers to the young men and women that you are all now has been one of my greatest pleasures in life."
The Third Master of Fairy Tail's eyes seemed to stare at each and every member of the guild at once.
"Even those of you who came at such a late age, like you...Lucy." The blonde Heartfilia's breath hitched in her throat as tears threatened to fall from her eyes for what felt like the one thousandth time today. "I know you've had your fair share of grief and pain growing up in the Heartfilia household, but even as old as you are, you are still one of my kids and you're a great girl! I know you can help reign in a certain wild child when he gets too rowdy, so I trust you to look after him for me and...your dream to just be a part of my guild is a humbling thing to hear. I hope.." Makarov took a shaky breath. "I hope that I made your experience here at Fairy Tail a pleasant one that you will hold in your heart forever."
"Of course it is! I'll never not be happy so long as I'm here, Master!" Her shout was met without reply.
"Levy, you know I trust you as much as I do my own flesh and blood, but don't forget that even if you do want to become strong for yourself, there is no shame in getting there with some help from others. So Jet, Droy, everyone, help her out will you?"
"By the dragons there's so much I want to say to each of you, but...ugh, I'll try my best here." Makarov took a deep breath. "Cana, I love you and you are a joy to drink with every day, but you keep the alcohol purchases so damn high that you're part of the debt which I'm handing off to Laxus!"
"So it's your fault?!"
"Hehehe...oops." Cana shrugged nervously as lightning sparked from the blonde's form.
Gildarts held a tight grip on Laxus's shoulder before the blonde could go off to verbally rip into his daughter.
"Gildarts...I hope you're able to build a solid relationship with Cana as you learn to be a parent. I know you've loved all the kids here, but Cana is actually your flesh and blood so it's a lot different from surrogates. Good luck my friend!"
A bright smile and thumbs up was sent to the Movie Lachryma's screen from the automail arm wielder.
"Elfman, you're already man enough so you don't need to keep shouting it out loud every time! Bisca and Alzack, by the dragons you are both so damned obvious that all of us just want you to get married already! If I'm dead before you two get married then I'm going to be sorely disappointed in myself and in you two because it just means you two took so dragon damned long!"
The two gun-toting mages blushed heavily, their faces shifting between embarrassment, amusement and sadness.
"Fried, Bickslow, Evergreen...look after my boy. He's as stubborn as...well as me, but you're the closest thing to friends he's got until he decides to change his approach to dealing with people."
The three members of the Raijinshuu saluted to the recording.
Tears flowed freely at this point for the members of Fairy Tail as Makarov's recording continued on as he said his final words for each of the other members. Warren, Reedus, Nab,, Vijeeter, Macao, Wakaba, Max, Laki, hell even 7 year-old Romeo got a little farewell message.
"Gajeel and Juvia, like Lucy you two came in late. Obviously the circumstances of your joining has been...less than ideal, but just know that I have never held your former statuses as Phantom Lord mages against you. Look out for the new family that you have here at Fairy Tail, and Juvia...I just want to say that no one here is your love rival and that Gray is solely yours!" Juvia released a choked combination of a sob and laugh, her deep blue eyes shifting towards her chosen mate and offered him a smile which he returned.
"Which leads me to you, Gray." Makarov sighed as he pinched his nose. "You're strong and you're actually one of my best candidates for the S-Class trials that we're going to be having soon. If you do make it, congratulations to you my boy and know that I am quite proud of how far you've come in life. Ur would be proud of you as well and I would have liked for her to have been around to see that happen...Also she's hot and I would have wanted to have her next to me to look at, but mostly the proud-of-you thing."
Gray shook his head as he sweatdropped at the Titan's comments towards his Ice Make Magic instructor.
"Try not to strip too much in public and don't get into too many fights with Natsu."
"I...I make no promises."
"Natsu...Natsu, my boy, you are one of the boys that I can relate to the most with your fiery passion both towards the guild and the people in it. Your loyalty is second only to Erza's in my opinion, which I think could be chalked up to being raised by Igneel. I love you for that, but I just want to say that I'm sorry because in all the time you've been here with us at Fairy Tail, I never did try to help you when it came to finding Igneel after he left you in X777." Natsu frowned deeply in conjunction with the recording's face. "You may have lost your father that day, and I know there's no replacing the one who raised you but I hope that I...that Happy and Lucy and everyone else here at Fairy Tail were able to make ourselves suitable surrogates to tide you over until you find him again."
"You...You'll always be the fucking best, Ji-chan!"
"Be good, Natsu and try not to blow up too much towns or villages since I'm not going to be there to bail you out like I used to." Makarov sighed deeply as he wiped his eyes which were already letting loose tears of their own. "Now..." He sniffed, drawing up the contents of his nose before it could drip free. "Now I know I've said my messages for practically everybody in the guild thus far, but concerning you final two...Erza and Mira, I need to say something else."
Everyone, aside from Yajima, tilted their heads in confusion at the former Wizard Saint's words.
"Fairy Tail is a guild with great history and of great strength, but it's people that make the guild. My father, Yuri Dreyar, my predecessor, Purehito Gaebolg, my fellow Wizard Saint and a God of Ishgar, Warrod and Mavis Vermillion, the First Master. These four people helped lay the foundation of Fairy Tail and helped instill into each of us that joined the guild that a guild is not the building, but the people. The people are what makes a guild great. The people are what makes the guild strong. So, here's the thing..."
The recorded image of the elder Dreyar's gaze grew a bit more stern.
"Gildarts Clive, for all his passion and power, is far too reckless and irresponsible as he is and thus I will not recommend him. Laxus Dreyar...I wanted to groom him to one day take my position but while I do have bias towards him for being family, he is too emotional, cocky, foolish and abrasive. With his ex-communication being nothing but a temporary arrangement I hope that once he comes back that he will be more mature and level-headed, but the uncertainty of such an outcome is too high and so I will not recommend him."
"What is this talk about recommendations?" Natsu asked. "And why's he bad-talking Laxus and Gildarts?"
No one answered the Fire Dragonslayer as they were too fixated on Makarov's recording.
"Erza Scarlet...or rather...well, I will keep that last bit a secret since that's your story to tell, Erza. I know you were told my Rin-chan there would be consequences, but try not to put it off for too long." A twitching smile was sent in the direction of Makarov's recording, but the seed had been planted. Erza would soon have to confront her guild mates about her heritage. But for now...
"Erza, you are everything I could ever hope for in a guild member of Fairy Tail. Strong. Smart. Courageous. Willing to put your life on the line for the sake of others, not just the guild members. Your becoming a member of the Ten Wizard Saints was an honour long overdue for someone of your calibre, but while you have the makings of a great leader in the field...I don't think you're well-suited for logistical aspects of what it means to be a leader. Remember to be fair and not to be too violent with your punishments in case someone in the guild steps out of line. You are one of my best and brightest, so I hope you continue to uphold the legacy of those who came before you. And I don't mean just Fairy Tail."
A lone tear traced the side of her face as it flowed from her non-prosthetic eye.
"And now, it's your turn...Mirajane Strauss." The white-haired barmaid blinked owlishly at her Master's recording. "You possess the same attributes as Erza, but unlike Erza you do have the suitability to handle logistics and running operations. Due to your time being my confidant, you've practically been my shadow. You've seen how things are done and you've actually even assisted in making pretty big and important decisions pertaining to the guild and it's members." Makarov frowned deeply as he released a tired sigh. "I know...I know you may not think yourself good enough or strong enough because of what happened to Lisanna..." Mirajane and Elfman winced a bit harder than the others who heard the name of their dead little sister. "But I do not make these sorts of decisions lightly and you've heard my assessments of the other S-Class mages. So, you may be wondering what it is that I've been getting at, but I think it's been fairly obvious at this point. So with my passing, it is with great honour that I bestow upon you the title, privileges and powers that I once had."
"Wh-Wh-Whaaaaat?! What? I...I just..."
"Mirajane Strauss!" The booming voice of Makarov snapped Mirajane out of her stammering stupor. "Demon of Fairy Tail and the best barmaid this guild could ever have...I appoint you as Fourth Master of the Fairy Tail Mage Guild! Congratulations!" Makarov smiled brightly into the Movie Lachryma. "I'm not joking and it's not a mistake, okay Mira-chan? You will be the Fourth. You have every right to turn down the position as I'm pretty sure you're feeling a lot of emotions right now."
That was an understatement.
"But I really do think you're the best one for the job." His expression softened as he placed a hand over his heart. "I love you and I believe in you. I know you can keep this old shack afloat for about as long as I did."
Makarov cleared his throat once more.
"Now, I think I've said all that I've needed to say so Yajima that's that!" The Titan of Fairy Tail's expression softened as he bore a gentle, grandfatherly smile. "My journey has come to an end and it has been...a truly...truly delightful one. Thanks to all of you! I love all of you, my adorable brats! Be good to one another...you hear?!"
The recording ended and the rectangular magic seal began to die down as the bright glow from the Movie Lachryma was dying with it.
The moment it did, Mirajane stumbled back. Her hands scrambled through the air as she lost her balance, but she was unable to secure a solid grip on the wooden table behind her. The sound of her collapse alongside the table knocked everyone else out of their own surprised stupor.
"Nee-chan!" Elfman immediately rushed to his sister's side. "Nee-chan, are you okay?"
"I'm...I'm..." Mirajane looked up at her brother with shock still written across her face. "I don't know how to feel about this. Master gives all these heartfelt goodbyes, but just suddenly springs this on everyone. I don't..."
The blue eyed barmaid Take Over mage watched as Laxus walked towards her, a stone-faced expression on his face. Elfman immediately placed himself in between the two, but Laxus simply rested a hand on the white-haired man's shoulder. A silent conversation took place between the two and not soon after did Elfman step aside. Mirajane followed her brother's movement before looking up at the blonde mage before her.
"Laxus...I never...I didn't..." Mirajane stammered as she searched for words. Laxus raised his arms up and Mirajane immediately flinched, shutting her eyes in expectation for what she assumed would be a violent act. However, she opened her eyes in confusion as the Lightning Magic user rested his hands on her shoulders.
Dark coloured eyes stared deeply into her own bright blue orbs. His grip tightened slightly in a form of reassurance and the Demon of Fairy Tail's eyes widened as the Thunder God graced with a rare smile.
"We trust you, Fourth."
The words seemed to echo throughout the guild, but to the newly appointed Fourth Master, they struck her like the lightning their speaker wielded. Mirajane's eyes watered as she glanced around the guild hall. Nods of approval and bright smiles were sent her way from each and every person within her field of vision. She wiped her tears before walking around Laxus and standing directly in front of her friend and rival.
"...You're okay with this?" She asked. "I know when we were kids you used to..."
Her words were stuck in her throat as Erza pulled her into a tight hug. Mirajane's surprised expression quickly transitioned to happiness as she returned the hug.
"THREE CHEERS TO THE NEW MASTER!" Cana whooped as she raised her mug of alcohol high. The others were quick to raise their mugs skyward in solidarity.
"MAS-TER MI-RA! MAS-TER MI-RA! MAS-TER MI-RA!"
Mirajane and Erza released each other from the hug and smiled brightly at one another.
"Of course!" As Erza was looking at her new guild master, she noticed a small figure moving from outside the window directly across from her.
A crimson eyebrow arched in confusion and curiosity.
Prison Level- Spy Network HQ, Eastern Fiorean Mountains, Fiore
It had been an odd imprisonment thus far for the Celestial Spirit of the Goat. When he woke from the magic wool-induced coma that Aries placed him in, he was already strapped to a wall by chains. Aries, Scorpio and Gemini had their keys taken from him and even if he did have them, the chains he was bound by had the unfortunate capability to seal off his magic.
He wasn't given any food, not that he needed to due to having the immortal body of a spirit which required no sustenance or rest. However, the strangest thing had been that for what felt like had been several days, no guards, wardens or whatever sort of prison officer this place he currently was in had yet to check on him.
Either they were very confident in their security or they forgot about him.
His head snapped up immediately as the sound of his cell's door lock clicked. The door opened and bright blue eyes widened as he gazed upon the form of his captor.
Naruto strode through the door and the body of the Goat Spirit's eyes widened even further from behind his sunglasses as Ultear followed in behind him. Kurama, Shukaku and Matatabi floated in the air above the two humans as they also entered the room.
"So all it takes is us losing to finally have you leave Grimoire Heart, eh?"
"We didn't just lose, Zoldeo."
"Don't call me that!" He hissed.
"We were clued in to your true identity by Aries after we defeated you." Shukaku told the anthropomorphic goat. "That you're not actually Capricorn the Goat."
"But Ul-chan spilled the truth to us now that she's with us." Matatabi directed her heterochromic eyes, seeming to stare into his soul with her pupil-less gaze. "You were formerly employed by the Heartfilia family and made off with the golden key for Capricorn. The question though is how you, Zoldeo, managed to possess the body of a celestial spirit. Especially one as strong as Capricorn who, according to Scoprio and Aries, is the second most powerful spirit of the twelve."
Zoldeo remained quiet.
"That's fine, you don't need to answer since Ul-chan already told us about how Human Subordination Magic works." The bakeneko Exceed laughed at Zoldeo's surprised expression. "Though to think you'd try to use it on a celestial spirit of all things. The type of magic is called Human Subordination Magic for a reason."
"If the stupid goat had just listened to me in the first place I wouldn't have had to try and subjugate him with my magic in the first place!" Zoldeo snapped, the horizontal pupils of his goat-like eyes widening in response to his emotional outburst. "I was already recruited by Grimoire Heart before Layla-sama died, and I already had the plan to take her golden keys before her stupid brat could get them! But no, the damned goat decided to rebel against me and so he forced my hand! Though I became trapped in his body, at least I managed to retain complete control of it and so I was literally immortal and far more useful to the cause as Caprico than I ever would have been as just Zoldeo!"
"He does have a point." Ultear agreed with a small shrug. "But unfortunately we're going to have to have you vacate Capricorn's body."
(Insert Music: Fairy Tail- Guild Darkness)
Naruto stepped forward, his eyes shining with ethereal white light.
"You lack a physical body and so you will likely fade out of existence the moment you leave Capricorn's soul." Naruto raised a hand the moment Zoldeo opened his mouth to argue. "You would think that you being a member of the Seven Kin of Purgatory would make you useful to me and my organisation, but I already have Ultear's allegiance and she outranked you as second in-command of Grimoire Heart so she holds more value than you ever could. And my plans for the Celestial Spirits are better off with having Capricorn restored to his original self, so you have two options."
"One!" Shukaku flew through the air settled atop Zoldeo's right shoulder. "You can willingly leave this body and disperse into the aether to be judged by the dragons of Light and Darkness to see where you will spend your afterlife!"
"Or two!" Kurama nestled on his left shoulder. "We developed a sealing formula to forcibly rip you out of Capricorn's body and rather than peacefully fading into the aether to have yourself judged by Weisslogia and Skyadrum, since you would be a spirit or ghost...that puts you in Matatabi's territory."
Matatabi gave a small wave as she bared her pearly whites.
"She can interact with those of your ilk due to her nature as a bakeneko, and given we don't care for you very much..."
"We don't care for him at all actually." Shukaku interjected.
"...well, my loving little sister can devour you and you'll be burned into non-existence."
Zoldeo's jaw dropped in response. "What kind of ultimatum is this?! Either way I'm going to die!"
Kurama and Shukaku looked to Zoldeo and then to each other.
"Well did you hear that, Onii-san?" The Ichibi asked with a mocking tone. "It sounds as if he is putting some form of resistance to our show of mercy."
"Why indeed I did, Otouto." The Kyuubi responded with just as much mockery before turning to his dragonslayer partner. "So I take it that we'll be going for option number two then?"
"What?! No!" Zoldeo shouted. "You can't do this! You can't do this to me! Ultear I swear by the dragons if you don't help get me out of this then I'm going to rip you apart limb by lim-mmph!"
"Now Now, no need to shout." Shukaku chuckled as he wrapped a rope of sand around the body of Capricorn's mouth. "We can all hear you, but unfortunately we're not gonna listen to you."
The two male Bijuu Exceed floated in the air as Naruto reached into his cloak and pulled out a seal tag.
"This seal essentially functions as a siphoning spell." The son of Acnologia explained. "Though you have possessed this body and inhabited Capricorn's soul for as long as you have, your magic energy signature has a distinct feel to it that can be isolated with my own ability to control energy itself. In layman's terms, I can exorcise you, Zoldeo."
The dark purple magic seal cast its glow as Naruto placed it on the anthropomorphic goat's chest. Zoldeo's scream was muffled by the sand and so the others merely watched as strings of kanji stretched out from the seal tag across Capricorn's body like snakes. The kanji then began to shine within the same dark violet light, a painful hissing accompanying the light as wisps of black smoke began to escape through the pores of the goat spirit's seizing body.
All eyes followed the smoke as it began to coalesce above their heads. Within the span of a minute, the entirety of the representation of Zoldeo's soul came together. The smoke twisted and morphed as it took on the image of a thin looking man with puffy hair made in smoke. The spirit of Zoldeo bore two golden orbs for eyes and he looked over his body in surprise as he hovered in the air only for the kanji on Capricorn's body to quickly recede into the seal tag and spring forth like serpents, binding the astral projection within the physical world.
"Wha-What the fuck?! What did you do to me?!"
"I did as I said I would." Naruto replied. "I've isolated your spirit from Capricorn's."
"But...But you did this so seamlessly!"
"We've had you in confinement and under surveillance for the past two weeks since Grimoire Heart fell, and in that time we've been studying you and ran many trial and error sessions to perfect this particular seal. You may think that no one has been watching you, but I can tell you with great certainty..." Naruto's eyes shone brilliantly. "...we've always had a close eye on you."
The glow in Naruto's eyes receded as they returned to their original bright blue.
"Aye sir!" The fiery body of the Nibi grew slightly as she shifted from her Exceed form to that of a twin-tailed cat approximately the size of an adult tiger. She licked her lips with drool and flame dripping from her fangs.
"No! No No No! Stop you can't...Please, I'll do anything! Anything! Please!"
The eyes of Zoldeo's spirit widened as his voice died in his astral throat. The shadow of the Nibi no Bakeneko enveloped his body and the last thing he saw was the bright sapphire and black flames of Matatabi's throat as he was devoured.
Matatabi licked her lips as she shrunk back down into her Exceed form, letting loose a small burp.
"Your eating habits are messy as always."
"Shut up." The Nibi stuck her tongue out at her kitsune costumed brother.
The sound of tired groaning then met their ears and the occupants of the prison room turned to Capricorn. Having a foreign soul removed from your own being was quite the draining experience and it showed in how Capricorn, now clad in his original, official butler uniform, began to break down into particles of light to return to the Spirit World. He raised his head and gave a smile of gratitude to the blonde dragonslayer before him.
"Thank you..." He uttered. Naruto snapped his fingers and the chains came undone, forcing the weakened golden key spirit to fall unceremoniously to his knees. "It...It has been nearly two decades since I was locked away within my own body. I...I truly...truly thank you. Unfortunately, I have pledged my services to another...A...A promise to Layla-sama, my first master. So I...I cannot truly serve you as my master, but I am in...your debt. Other than my servitude, should you require something of me before I return to the Spirit World..."
"I am aware of your promise to Layla Heartfilia, Capricorn." Tired blue eyes widened slightly at the blonde stranger's words. "Your key will be given to Lucy Heartfilia, but as you are indebted to me, I do have a mission for you to carry out once all twelve golden keys are collected and together."
"If...If I may ask...what does that mission entail?" The fading anthropomorphic goat asked.
"The Eclipse Gate."
Those three words alone answered Capricorn's question and through his dark tinted lenses, his light blue eyes stared into the deep sapphire ones of his saviour.
"My debt to you is binding, so...it will be done." A stiff nod was given in reply to the goat spirit's words before said goat spirit faded from view. In his place lay a golden key with the astrological symbol for Capricorn present on its handle.
"Well..." Kurama rested atop his partner's head. "That was easier than I thought."
"Same." Matatabi agreed as she watched Naruto pick up the golden key, pocketing it with the other three he had on his person. "Didn't think he'd agree so readily, but I guess those celestial spirit debts really are as binding as they say they are."
Naruto merely offered the Bijuu-Exceed a shrug, not willing to question the logistics of astral existences and their morals. With his business involving Capricorn now concluded, the blonde made a move to exit the premises. Ultear walked after him, putting a little bit more speed into her pace as she tried to match his longer strides. Her dark eyes glanced down at his pocket, the sound of the jingling keys meeting her ears with each step they took.
"Are you really going to give those away to Lucy Heartfilia?" Ultear asked. "Having celestial spirits on our side would be pretty useful, and I'm sure there's someone among the rank-and-file who might be interested in using the keys or is a Holder-type magic user. Scorpio would be useful for desert ops, Aries can put people to sleep and Gemini is literally the best infiltration or assassination based being outside of an actual assassin mage. Capricorn...well I'm too sure what he can do outside of close-combat but...oh right, he said he wouldn't serve anyone other than Lucy so I guess you have to give him away."
"I have considered the option, but none of the mages outside of when I first started this network are versed in Celestial Spirit Magic."
"What about the mages outside the core members?" She asked. "Sure they're dark mages, but I'm sure the sub-guilds of Grimoire Heart that I hold sway with have someone who can at the very least use some silver keys."
"You answer your own question by pointing out they are dark mages formerly under your deceased master's employ."
"...Fair enough, but I mean it seems like such a waste to give them away to Fairy Tail."
Naruto sighed. "If you really wish to know that badly, the primary reason I am giving them to Heartfilia is because it will be easier to keep track of them if they are all under one wielder. She is in possession of Taurus, Cancer, Aquarius, Virgo, Leo and Sagittarius and giving her these four will be give her a grand total of ten. Given she is also on the lookout for the other golden key spirits of her own volition, it prevents me from having to use too much of my own resources to find the other two."
"Those are Pisces and Libra right?"
"Indeed." He nodded. "But another reason to not have the spirits under my command is that Celestial Spirit contracts are very odd from what I've read about them. They are only able to work on specific days of the week and while there is room for negotiation I cannot afford such unreliable personnel as they are more liability than asset in that regard so it is easier to simply use what I have."
"Not like you're down on variety either I guess." The daughter of Ur added. "Especially since you got me to control the sub-guilds of Grimoire Heart."
"Oh?" Her eyes widened slightly in surprise. "You're surprisingly more agreeable since we last met. I never thought I'd see the day."
The blonde shook his head. "You really are quite a troublesome woman."
"Well like you said, I am yours." She batted her eyelashes earning another sigh from the dragonslayer.
The three Bijuu-Exceed simply laughed as the two humans before them continued to bicker.
Main Hall- Spy Network HQ
The mutterings throughout the main hall of the castle echoed as many theorized what the reason was for the Ogonno Fuujin and Onibi Myobu to have recalled practically all their dispersed teams.
Sue and Fu stood before the crowd as Naruto's second in-commands, doing a final headcount.
"Kinda cool isn't it?"
Sue's dark green eyes shifted slightly in the direction of the daughter of Cyclonus. "What do you mean, Fu-sama?"
"I mean sure he was a really egotistical dick about it when he first started this thing, but I think it was only approximately seventy of you..."
"Right, sixty-five, and well the couple of us that were with him when it was still in its infancy. This organisation of his has really become something else."
Sue looked up from the tablet in her hands and took a long look over the many occupants that filled the main hall. The subordinate dark guilds were kept out from the recall and thus it only consisted of his executive mages, the Exceed and the mages whom the blonde had under his command ever since he killed Jose Porla all those months ago. This placed the numbers well over one hundred, and if they did ever decide to bring the dark guild members into the fold they would easily cross into the thousands.
"That's true." Sue said with a small smile. "And I can't believe Fuujin-sama's actually going to tell us exactly what his actual plan is."
"Well it sounded like he would have told us eventually, but way to expedite that slow-ass moving train." The mint-haired mage lightly punched Sue on her shoulder. "Kinda ironic that we're functioning as a spy network and yet we knew nothing about what it is Naruto wanted to do."
The two females laughed lightly, but quickly quieted down along with the others as an Exceed flew out from the far-off hallway.
"He's coming!" The green-furred feline shouted as softly as he could. The Exceed hovered in the air, floating beside his brethren as the sounds of heavy footsteps came from the hallway. The footsteps grew louder with each passing moment some of the spy network members unknowingly began to sweat or hold their breaths.
Naruto emerged from the hallway with Ultear, Shukaku, Matatabi and Kurama in tow. Ultear was led off to join the place where the executive members were sitting by Matatabi and Shukaku while Naruto and Kurama made their way over to the obsidian throne which lay at the head of the main hall. Naruto sat himself down while Kurama hopped off of his head, transforming into his three-tailed form so as to comfortably rest atop Omega Pillow-chan, the comfortable red velvet pillow which lay beside the throne.
Naruto cast his hardened gaze over the subordinates as they all stood at attention.
"Is this everyone?"
"Yes, Fuujin-sama." Sue presented her tablet to him so as to show the evidence of her statement. "All of our original members have been recalled. Gajeel Redfox and Juvia Lockser are present from Fairy Tail along with Lyon Vastia and his group from Lamia Scale. The Nine and the Exceed population are all in attendance as well."
The son of two Wizard Saints nodded. "Good, you and Fu can go take your positions."
"Aye." Sue bowed her head slightly before walking off with Fu.
Another deafening silence passed over the room as the two females stood in line alongside their fellow network members. Naruto adjusted his seating position as he cleared his throat.
"Before I begin the true nature of this mass recall of all of the spy network's core subordinates, excluding the dark guild members for obvious reasons, I am sure many of you are wondering why it is I have brought Erza of Fairy Tail into the premises." All heads turned in the direction of the armoured redhead. The youngest of the Ten Wizard Saints remained calm and collected as she sat beside Roshi in the executive member area. "I will be blunt with this statement in that Erza is in fact my biological twin sister. "
Eyes widened and many shouts of surprise ranging from a simple "What?!" to every single expletive under the sun came afterwards. Even Erza herself could not help but be surprised by her brother's unveiling of their relationship as she still had yet to reveal her true heritage to her own guild. Though given the words from Makarov's video recording of his will where he all but nearly outright told everyone her parentage, she would clearly have to make that reveal soon.
A flare of magic energy from the son of Acnologia quieted the room.
"Our parentage is not yet something I am willing to trust most of you here with, but even so, I will still offer fair warning that regarding the relationship between myself and Erza...that if anyone serves to try and benefit from this information then know that I will find you and you will be killed for insubordination. Also it is to be noted that I am aware that this is a shocking revelation to those of you who were not privy to this information, but do not be mistaken. My heritage has changed nothing when it comes to where my allegiances lie and Erza is not like Gajeel or Juvia as she has, and will continue, to have no direct relation to our network. If you wish to question me regarding any concern surrounding Erza, then they will be addressed afterwards. However, as I stated before, this announcement is not why I have gathered you all here."
Naruto glanced to the dark skinned woman that was his second in-command.
"Before the assault on Tenrou Island was made, Sue was quite adamant in wanting to know the true reasoning behind all our current actions involving the Magic Council, Grimoire Heart and Fairy Tail. Her own points were valid and while Kurama and I would have brought this up at a later date, clearly there were some concerns regarding what our plan was. So I believe given our current status as a network and the current plan to begin expansion beyond Fiore is soon to be upon us...I will explain everything. It was a promise I made to Sue."
A few waggling eyebrows sent her way made the dark skinned woman's face flush, a half-hearted glare being her response to them.
"I also made a similar statement to Erza where I said that when the time was right, I would explain what I wanted out of her needing to investigate the reasons behind why Zhuge Liang and Scheherazade agreed to be Ten Wizard Saint members." Naruto rose from his throne, his already tall form appearing that much larger due to his elevated position.
Black and blue energy flowed off of Naruto's body and the watching eyes of his subordinates were unblinking as the magic energy morphed into the mighty phantasmal image of his draconian father. With a blink, Naruto's brilliant blue orbs were bathed in ethereal white light and a magic seal appeared within them.
(Insert Music: Gargoyles- Theme Song Instrumental)
"Mokushiryu no Byakugan."
The Apocalypse Dragon's All-Seeing White Eye cast a magic seal upon the floor and suddenly a grand illusion was cast as the world itself seemed to peel away. Soon the group found themselves to be as if they were hovering in the air as they stood within the illusionary world of Naruto's creation.
The land was the most beautiful thing they had ever cast their eyes upon. It was like gazing upon an actual representation of paradise and their eyes followed the many creatures that roamed the land of illusion that Naruto's magical eyes created.
"In this world, the world of Alagaesia...it is the homeland of the dragons themselves. The almighty winged beasts that helped shape the very universe we exist in. Through many ages, there has always been four Divine Dragons each of which govern over one of the four fundamental aspects of the universe. The Void. Time. Force. Energy. Each of these four aspects help make the universe what it is and can manipulated by these Divine Dragons to form feats of what mortals can only best describe as god-like."
The world became a blur of colour as they seemed to zoom through the skies only to suddenly shift downwards towards solid ground and enter a large cavernous area where what appeared to be a large nest had been built. Within the nesting area were four eggs, each one of differing yet very eye catching colour combinations.
One egg was black with blue flame-like markings. The second egg was silver with black flame-like markings. The third was a mixture of sapphire and electric blue, bearing turquoise flame-like markings. The final egg was a bright white with golden flame-like marking adorning it.
"The dragons are all governed by their leader, the Dragon King. A King can only be the eldest of the four Divine and so when it comes to these four eggs in particular, the eggs of the Divine Dragons, it is a contest of strength and speed."
Each of the eggs lay still within the nest, but not too long after, the eggs all shook wildly, sometimes rolling and tipping over as cracks steadily appeared across their respective surfaces.
"For though they would all be born on the same day, whosoever escaped their shell first would be the one crowned Dragon King."
The moment Naruto uttered those words, his subordinates all watched in amazement as the miracle of birth occurred.
"Now the explanation about the true motive of my spy network being created, what it is my true end game is meant to be...if it were to be given without context, it would confuse likely all of you and so I must first tell you the tale of my father. Not my biological parent, but the one who raised me..."
The black and blue flame patterned egg was the first to shatter. Emerging from the yolk with a high-pitched roar there came a dragon with similarly coloured scales and round white eyes shining in all their glory.
(A/N: Alright so that's it for this chapter. This chapter was mostly to get things going by focusing mostly on the aftermath of the battle of Tenrou for Fairy Tail itself. I wanted to try and bring across Makarov's death like they did the Death of Superman in a way. He was one of the strongest, most charismatic and likeable people you could ever meet, but while his funeral would draw a crowd, not many would truly know who he was as a person and so I wanted to have Laxus hit that note. I was personally inspired to make it this way because of a line in Batman v Superman where Bruce says to Diana that they don't know how to honour him and Diana says except as a soldier. Which I thought really resonated with me and so...that let me put together that scene.
Now as to Makarov's will and his choice of successor, I personally wanted to make Mirajane the Fourth Master for the reasons I wrote for Makarov. She may not be the strongest, but you don't have to be the strongest to be the best leader. She's kind hearted, was Makarov's confidant in every sense of the word and I think because of that she's had her ear to the ground in the guild for longer than most other members of Fairy Tail. Essentially Makarov could have used her confidant status as a way to try and groom her for the role she did not know she was being groomed for. So yeah, and well sure Erza might have been just as good a choice, but I don't think the Erza of my story would be suited to a guild master role as she's more of a front line fighter than anything else. Plus I need her for the future storylines I have planned so I can't have her cooped up in the guild as the Fourth Master.
And now with regards to the third act of this chapter, now that I've got Zoldeo dead, Capricorn returned to normal and the stage all set with regards to the spy network I can finally start up the reveal as to what happened and how Acnologia lost his throne. Acnologia always said he suffered usurpation, that Zennou's rule was unjust and he was never supposed to be upon the throne of the Dragon King. That he was only there because of Zeref. Well next chapter will be the step that will begin to reveal it all to you. I originally wanted to put the story of Acnologia in this chapter but I didn't realise how many words I'd reached until I decided to take a break so next chapter for it guys lol.
Hope you guys enjoyed the chapter. Please remember to review, review, review!)