Geh... I finally got around to making this...

Note: FotSM consists of NatZa one-shots. Many may be in no particular order and can take place in an AU (Alternate Universe). Certain one-shots will receive a continuation due to either popular demand or simply by my decision. Some characters may be OOC.

Disclaimer: I do not own Fairy Tail. Hiro Mashima does. If I were to own it, then it wouldn't suck as it is right now. At least that's my opinion. *nods* Besides, I'd also spam chapters with NatZa.

A/N: Quotes come from the song "Silver Sky" sung by Nano. Also, this was a request from Nightlingbolt; whether he remembers it or not. *chuckles* Sorry about the modifications though. Hope you forgive this fool.

Rated: M

Genre: Hurt/Comfort; Friendship (budding Romance)

A yawn resounded through the dimly lit room.

The single source of light, the fire that crackled as it burned the wood that kept it alive and thriving, brought enough light to illuminate the area for easier navigation. Red carpet with gold trimmings lay in the middle of the flat stone floor. From the Southern and Eastern walls stood large bookshelves that, as its name implies, shelved an abundance of books; each stacked neatly and placed in alphabetical order. Nearby, facing away the fireplace, stood a velvet chair with a circular table with a lamp above sitting right beside it.

Upon closer observation, a man sat on the chair with his right elbow on the armrest and his closed fist under his chin. He had short black hair that appeared spiky and unkempt, the bangs almost reaching his left eye. The man sported a black collared shirt that was unbuttoned with a dark blue shirt right under and cargo pants that almost reached his shoes.

His head slowly tilted to his right while he snored on quietly, righting himself by a small amount every now and then. However, much as he tried without his notice, his head finally fell from his resting place, jerking him awake before his face would hit anything. His half-lidded eyes scanned the room before setting onto the point of interest, a small smile forming on his lips.

"It's been a while hasn't it, everyone? It's good to see the faces of both familiar and new. Where was I?" He asked before letting out a long yawn, stretching both arms out before placing them back onto the armrest. "I'd be a lot more hyperactive if you caught me at a better time, but this will do. First off, an introduction for those of you who don't know me and have skipped all the way here instead of reading FotSM from the beginning. My name... is nothing of importance. But nevertheless, it is a pleasure to meet you all."

The man sat upright and moved his fist near his mouth, coughing into it several times. "Now, This story I am about to tell you is... different. Unlike the others, this one is strictly remaining here on 'Flames of the Scarlet Memory' along with a few other stories in the making. I am doing this just to be sure there will be stories here even after I decide to turn the others into separate ones. Is it a stupid idea? I don't know really. Even still, I will stick with it."

He smiled again, standing and walking over to one of the bookshelves and taking one red book. "Let's get on with the story. I'm sure you would prefer that than listen to this ol' fool speak. So, Without further delay, here is the next chapter." He said, opening the book.

Chapter VIII: Bloodstained Rose

by Yoh Narukami

"Another hope

fades away

into light."

"N-No! Please, have mercy!"

The sound of rain beating against the floorboards of a building filled the area. What use to have been the ceiling that sat atop was reduced to almost nothing, giving way to the dark, ominous sky as well as the pouring rain drops from the outside. The sound of thunder roared in the sky as lightning flashed.

"Mercy? You want me... to show you, a dark mage, mercy...? Heh... that's a fuckin' laugh, but you weren't as entertaining as I thought you'd be... That's a shame."

Inside what was left of the dark guild stood a man clad in a red cloak, the only sign of a body within it was the outstretched arm holding another man by the neck. The other man struggled and gasped for breath as the grip the cloaked figure had on him was more than inhuman. His eyes were bloodshot with tears that streaked down on his scarred face while his vision steadily began to blur the longer he was choked.

"P-Please! Let m-me go- ackh!"


It had such a twisted sense of humor. In other times, better times, he would have shown mercy; he would have given them a chance, but now, that was no longer the case. Now, he was merely a shadow of his former self; a shell that continues to empty. What was once a savior had now been changed into that of an executioner.

The figure's grasp strengthened, a sign that he was beginning to get irritated by the dead man's constant pleas. A heavy sigh was heard, although slightly drowned out by the rain, coming from the cloaked man. He moved his arm closer , their faces now a mere foot and a half away.

"Life is cruel, y'know? You could have been born one day, and die the next. You can be at the top of the damn world at one point, only to be devoured and spat out not long after," He let out a chuckle, "Mercy... tch, scum like you didn't show an inch of mercy to my comrades... to her... why should I do the same? I saw her die... I saw all of them die! What reason is there that I should show that I am the better man? I've already proven that I could no longer be that. I've long passed that a long time ago."

The dark guild member's eyes widen before a sickening sound of bone being broken and flesh torn apart was heard soon after. The corpse's head flew into the air and landed with a thump, its body doing the same soon after. Blood spewed from the neck and onto the wooden floor, mixing with the rainwater that continued to drop and sinking into the floorboards.

"You insects... are all the same," His bloodied body turned to the rest of the dark mages who were cowering in a corner to his right, fear stricken as their end was nearing. " Thinkin' that you're so high and mighty, but when you start bleeding, you grovel and beg to have your life spared or saved."

Many of the dark mages were shaking at the knees while others stood their ground, albeit with noticeable fright in their eyes. One of them finally lost it and attempted to climb the broken wall and escape, but was stopped, quite literally dead on his tracks when the ground under him had erupted into a pillar of fire and incinerated him.

"But... y'know..." He said as the flaming pillar grew in length and quickly surrounded his prey, the fire ever scorching regardless of how much the rain poured, "This actually … gets me all fire'd up..."

The last thing they saw before their demise was the light of the flames which revealed a mad, bloodstained smile of the cloaked man.

And onyx eyes that thirst for revenge.

The eyes of an executioner...

Eyes that belonged to the one called Natsu Dragneel.

"Distant melodies

A sweet lullaby

Will lead me to you."


It was something many people wanted more of. With it, opportunities are larger in number, stress is lessened, and eyes can rest much easier. Unfortunately, time is the ever fleeting, ever changing factor. And it was something Erza Scarlet wanted all too much.

From the beginning, she never really wished for anything. Her demands were usually within her own reach, and with time, she would accomplish those goals. Her determination, her strength, her friends, that was all that she needed. With them, phenomenal feats can be can be grasped, and the sky was no longer the limit. She can break the barrier, and do the inconceivable.

But that was all in the past. Nothing more than a memory that continued to play in the back of her mind. Things were different at the current time. It was not the same as before, and it can no longer be as it was originally. It was the cold hard fact and there was no other choice but to accept it lest you want to face the consequences. It was reality. And reality presents the truth.

She walked forward at a steady pace, her almost lifeless eyes staying well planted on the path in front of her. The clanging of the armor she wore on her legs and arms went on in rhythm to her walk. Large portions of her skin were exposed to the suns rays due to her choice of clothing that consisted of a gray halter-type armor with the Hearts-Kreuz emblem in black on the right breastplate top, giving view to the woman's cleavage and slim stomach. She also wore a dark bikini bottom with a navy blue cloth wrapped almost around it and served as an asymmetrical skirt. The only thing that stood out from what she wore, was the scarf wrapped around her neck. White and patterned like scales.

She stopped and took in the sight that was in front of her. Ruins of what use to be buildings lay on the scarred floor. Rubble was scattered across the land with visible scorch marks. A tinge of emotion briefly made its way to the scarlet haired woman's eyes before it had gone like the wind. She moved forward, stepping onto piles of broken wood and burnt soil. She passed by the once prosperous land that once inhabited many. Every step she took, the memory of what had happened flooded into her head, and soon her eyes projected them as she looked around; as if it were recorded.

Blood was in every corner. The screaming and shouting was everywhere, almost drowning out the sound of the flames and collisions of magic. All of it could be seen vividly, and it pained her to know that she saw it first hand. She couldn't forget. She could never forget. It was cemented into her subconscious. She shook her head and gritted her teeth, but she was still seeing it all. The clarity was too much it was giving her a painful headache.

The sight of crying.

The sound of lives running and buildings collapsing.

The taste of her own blood.

The smell of smoke.

The feeling of exhaustion taking over her body.

She couldn't take it.

Erza curtly turned around and quickened her pace, wishing to get away before she could remember any more that would suffocate her. A stray tear descended down her face without her notice, falling from her face and onto a leaf of a budding tree. She slowed to a halt, her eyes staring to the ground as her head gently turned around to looked to the sapling. Her tears blurred her vision, but she could see it well enough. She stared for almost a minute, and her head faced the front once more. She raised her arm and gripped the scarf wrapped around her neck, lifting it and using it to wipe away the tears from her face, regaining her bearings and resumed her travel.

Today was the day.

The day he would return.

And she was going to make change.

"Fireflies glow upon you and I."

The muddy ground dirtied his feet as he always chose to wear sandals. Each step he took ended with a splash that stained his ragged trousers and cloak. The feeling of the dirty water on his toes would have irritated him, but he was currently too deep in thought to even notice. He only walked forward in a straight line, as if pulled by an unknown force that guided him to where he wanted to go. He didn't know what it was. But whether it was his instincts as a dragon slayer or a simple gut feeling, he wouldn't know. And he didn't want to bother deducing what the source was either way.

His eyes remained drooped down the whole journey back 'home', rarely even blinking. Those with watchful eyes would come across him would view him as only a walking body; the soul it once housed far from its place. The rare occurrence of any sort of interaction would only be replied with silence as Natsu would not even acknowledge the other being's existence. Many would also say that keeping their eyes onto the man would give them a sense of both fear and pity.

He unconsciously stopped, having taken this road so many times it had given the man a sort of map that cemented onto his head. He knew that he now stood in front of a large wall with pillars used for lookout points. He knew that only a few feet away were the massive wooden doors that stood closed. Behind the giant walls stood the great city: Dravern. Though it was called a city, it would have been more fitting to have called it a kingdom; for that was what it was.

Many things, or maybe even everything, had changed. It was unfamiliar to the dragon slayer's eyes. Remnants of the fading past still remained, but it was insignificant when compared to the differences, and would soon die off into another piece of history. He could see it. After he enters, he would be greeted to the sight of something he will never become accustomed to even after all this time. All this time since that day, he knew that with his stubborn personality he'll forever be stuck in the past, hopelessly endeavoring to keep hold of it.

He raised his hand, lifting it out from inside his cloak and into his emotionless gaze. Scars and callouses covered his arm, ranging in various sizes. His glazed eyes somber before reaching to the large doors, ready to knock and make his presence known. However, the entrance had already begun to open and surprised him, though he made no sign to show it. The large doors slowly creaked open, letting the light from inside shine through the opening. He narrowed his eyes and used his hand as shade for them. He lowered his hand as he quickly adjusted, looking ahead as he heard footsteps.

"... How'd you know I'd be back?" He asked monotonously.

"I didn't at first. They said you would return sometime this week." Erza replied with the shrug of her shoulders, his lack of a reaction disappointing her. "I just had a feeling you'd be here soon, so I decided to wait."

"... Thanks then. For waiting." He stepped forward, calmly walking inside and went right passed the scarlet haired woman who soon followed a few steps behind, entering what looked to be the shopping district of Dravern City. The whole vicinity was lively with chatter as the citizens and travelers spoke loudly of their day along with the other sea of conversation that flooded the streets.

Erza glanced at Natsu from time to time, something the man noticed but didn't bother to ask why she was doing it. He knew that there was something on her mind as they would usually do this same routine often; almost always as soon as he would return, and if she had already been within Dravern's walls before then. Though for him, today the atmosphere was different. He gave it some thought, coming into realization after some pondering. He slowed his pace, allowing Titania to catch up in a matter of seconds.

"Hey, Erza..."


"... Let's... do something different this time. At least just for today. Before we go there, let's make a visit." He spoke, his voice noticeably softer while he took a turn down to another street, differing from their usual route.

Erza understood right away and followed without question, today being all too familiar to her. She gave Natsu a small nod to show her approval. To this, Natsu faced forward and continued on the man-made road, passing by many of the food stands of the shopping district. Many of the city dwellers saluted them both in respect as they passed by as well as cheers and an applause from all around the district. Both Salamander and Titania would put on a smile and wave to them. It was cruel. To lie to the people they have sworn to protect. To leave them in blissful ignorance. But they had to do what they had to do. It was orders given to them by their superiors.

To give them a false sense of peace in a world that had been scarred by brutal combat, evil, and death.

To keep them safe from within the city. Within the walls.

To maintain what's left of the order.

As a means to lessen the damaged that had already been dealt.

Those were the words that had been spoken. It was unjust of them, but if it meant that they could prevent another tragedy from transpiring, even if it were only prolonging the inevitable, then lie they would. It was far more reasonable than falling back into subjugation. Nevertheless, they despised doing so; their procedure becoming too mundane.

The number of people dwindled from one place to the next, and both mages could feel a small weight lift off from their shoulders each time, allowing them to relax even if it were just a little. The more vacant it were, the more the pain would be numbed from having to deceive the lives of the innocent.

Erza still proceeded to give Natsu an occasional glance, each stare having its own unique thought, however, it would end the same. Her lips would part as she tried to speak, but her voice failed her, inevitably irritating the young woman. Erza opted to fully prepare herself, finding the task given to her too troublesome to perform at that moment.

'I just really hate seeing the both of you act like this. Things could never be exactly the same, I know, and the road to recovery is still far, but nevertheless, something has to be done, Erza. And by the looks of things, you're going to have to be the one to initiate it.'

"I'm really sorry, Mira, but this just isn't something I can mindlessly tackle head on..."

"No, it isn't, but it is not impossible either. Just please Erza, you're... all Natsu has left. He'll only talk to you. You need to remind him that he's not alone. He needs you. Just as much as you need him. Please... just be with him. You are his superior, so you should keep watch of him. Though, what I am really asking you is to be with him as a friend."

'She's right, but...' Erza's head lowers as she thought over her conversation with Mirajane. Like them, she suffered a great loss, and yet unlike them, she was able to steadily find her strength to stand back up to continue. Maybe it was different for her friend, but that would be saying that her pain weren't as much as Natsu's and her very own. It would be wrong to say such a thing.

'I guess today is the day. I'm not running away anymore. And neither should he. My previous attempts were just too meager. We've been drowning ourselves in our own sorrow for far too long now.' She sighed, disregarding whether or not Natsu was paying attention to her. 'I've been doing my best, but it has been going on for too long, I might lose him if I keep going at a snail's pace. I was going about this one step at a time, but recently I found myself stuck...'

Her head moved up, her eyes taking in their destination that was coming into view. The place was a symbol all knew. A final resting place. The departure. The silent garden. All accurate and appropriate epithets for a description of the grounds they now walked upon. Once more, they could feel as if the gravity around them had intensified, slowing them down and inducing more fatigue to their bodies. The temperature felt as if it went down, causing even Natsu to feel the strong grip of the cold.

He stopped, and his eyes lower, landing onto a stone plaque. His head turned, feeling a hand gently hold onto his shoulder, and stared right into Erza's eyes. He nodded, Erza taking it as permission and heading off into another direction. She kept herself from looking back to see the man as he begun to speak, knowing she wouldn't be able to proceed any more if she did. Her heart felt heavier and heavier the more she advanced, but she was not perturbed, pressing on with the strength she can muster up, slowing down little by little until she finally made it to where she wanted to be. She lost the strength in her legs, and she fell to the floor in a sitting position, staring at the carved stone as she waited for the tears to finally overtake her.

She hadn't a clue as to how long she cried, but it was apparent to her that it must have lasted a very long time. She chuckled mockingly at herself, deducing that no matter how much tears she'd shed, fresh new droplets would take the place of the old, and the cycle would continue. Somehow, that was the only thing that remained the same for her. Her reddened eyes stung from releasing her pent up sorrow, becoming more irritating as she wiped the tears away as she adjusted herself onto her feet. She stayed still for only a few more moments and turned, deciding it was time she got back to Natsu.

It didn't take too long for her to look for him. He remained in the same place, albeit this time sitting down with his head lowered, his hair shadowing over the upper half of his face. Even from a distance, Erza could still hear the sniffles he tried to hide. He had been crying; not unlike herself. Merely a few feet away from her dear friend and comrade and she could already feel the distressed aura his body exerted. She frowned, though she quickly wiped it from her face, kneeling down and taking his hand with her own. She intertwined her fingers with his, standing up while helping the dragon slayer get onto his feet as well.

"You okay?" She asked softly.

"... I wish I was, Erza." He spoke, struggling to even say a few words.

Erza could feel her heart become heavier. "Alright; you should be on your way then. I'll catch up with you, I promise, but I'd also like to speak with her for a little bit. Is that okay?" She waited for his reply, relieved when he finally gave a nod and stood up straight. Begrudgingly, he walked away without a word, making himself look as if he were a wandering spirit silently patrolling the grave. She kept her brown eyes onto him until she could no longer see his figure in the distance, turning her head to the tombstone nearest to her. She stood there almost like a statue until she knelt down to where she was now on her knees, her hands placed above her legs. She gave a melancholic smile.

"It's been quite a long time ago since I had last spoken to you, hasn't it? I have no excuse for it, and I greatly apologize for speaking with you only now. If I had to guess, I just didn't know what to say. I'm... I'm such a horrible friend, aren't I?" She chuckled softly. "Though you'd probably say something along the lines that I didn't do anything wrong and that I'm just having a tough time... You're right, but that doesn't mean I can neglect visiting you." She paused.

"I... no, Natsu and I have been doing our best, you know? But... as you can see, neither of us have been able to overcome it. It was as if the task was beyond our abilities. I knew that it would take me a long time to recover, however, I thought Natsu would have already moved on from it. When I look at him now, he's hurting; just as much as I am if not more. It is heartbreaking to see him like this. That's why, even though you are resting, I must ask of you to lend me your strength. I know now that I need your help. I cannot do it without you. So please, I beg of you, watch over me." Erza said, her voice steadily weakening as her lips quivered.

"Another hope

Fades away

Into the lonely night."

After Erza had finished, she exited the cemetery and finally set a course to her usual route to where she and Natsu usually relaxed together. It may have been the product of her many failed attempts to help both her and Natsu move on, but she was glad she was able to stumble upon it. At the very least, it was a haven for them. A place where the regret and hate disappear. She made extra precautions to make sure that she wasn't being followed. It was selfish of her, selfish of the both of them to keep their place of rest secret, but they wanted it to remain the way it was.

It was now late evening and the sun had begun its descent, the dark overtook the light. She stoically walked through the serene woods, reaching an old path that couldn't be found to the untrained eye. Twenty minutes felt like it had gone by before she was aware of it, and she had reached a log cabin. It was a brown rectangular, two-story building with four windows on the longer side and only two on the shorter. Smoke emanated from the chimney and the windows glow a flickering orange. Behind the house flowed a calm stream that shined from the last bits of light for the day.

She made it to the front porch, standing in front of the door and opening it. She entered, slowly closing the door on her way in and glanced around the spacious area. A small glimpse of how the inside had looked like before she and Natsu had found it flashed vividly in her head. Cobwebs in the ceiling, dust collected the floor and floated in the air, furniture in horrible condition due to aging, and rats that scampered inside the cabin.

They encountered the house by chance as they decided to take a stroll down the woods. After some minutes of studying the abandoned cabin, both felt the sudden pull that would keep them inside. In the end, they agreed upon making the place their sanctuary; visiting each day, cleaning and fixing until it was fit to house them with no complication. They concluded that while they would not make it their home, they would visit as often as they could, but only when they were together. It was tranquility. As far as they knew, they were the only ones who knew of the cabin, leaving it when they feel that they can and coming back to see it the way they left it.

She made it to the table that stood not too far from the fireplace, seating herself and taking a look to her right to watch Natsu as he focused on cooking up food for him and Erza. He felt her stare and turned his head to look at her, nodding curtly in greeting. He returned his attention back to cooking and Erza placed both her arms on the table, intertwining her fingers together. She twiddled with her thumbs as she waited, the aroma of the sizzling fish tickling her nose. Her body reacted, her stomach letting off a growl loud enough for both to hear. She expressed a look of embarrassment, her cheeks reddening after hearing the dragon slayer chuckle softly.

They ate in silence, the sound of forks and spoons clattering on the plate being the only noise besides the fire that burned not too far from them. It hadn't taken them long to finish, and soon the scene had changed to Erza washing the dishes as Natsu walked up to the stairs and onto the second floor. He passed one door on his left and entered the second, leaving it open while he walked over to the balcony. His forearms rested on the wooden railings and his eyes peered down to the steady stream of water that went passed the cabin. He took a few steps back and sat down onto one of the chairs that stood there.

His sense of hearing picked up on familiar footsteps all the while his nose smelled an equally memorable scent. The door closed with a 'click', and Erza took her seat right beside the salmon-haired man.

"... How did the mission go, Natsu?"

"As usual, it lead me to a dead end. The only good part to it was that I was able to get rid of the dark guild 'Back Draft'. Other than that, nothin' else." Natsu replied to Titania's question, narrowing his eyes as he thought about it. "Nothing but a bunch of pushovers too. Wonder how they survived as long as they did."

Erza nodded. "It's been like that for so long it isn't so surprising anymore. Just how long are we going to live like this?" She murmured. Natsu gave a quick glance.

"Your guess is as good as any." Natsu let a small sigh escape his mouth, directing his eyes upward to the sky as it had finally darkened; giving a magnificent display of the countless stars that dotted the endless space. "Everything's changed, Erza. But the sky... it stays the same no matter where you go. It's always so big. It'll go from day to night, night to day, it'll be hot or cold, but it's still the same. It's always there. It never leaves..."

Erza remained quiet, Natsu taking it as a signal to continue. "When it's night, people say that when you see a shooting star, you can make a wish and it'll come true. I... would wish for things to go back before it all happened. So that I can keep things from going wrong. So that... so that we wouldn't have to live like this." He gritted his teeth and clenched his fist while standing up, causing the scarlet haired woman to be in alarm and watch her partner carefully.

"One week ago, while I was heading to Allefall City, I saw it... a shooting star." His fists tightened until his knuckles were white. "I made the wish... I said it with all of my goddamn heart...! So why? Why isn't anything happening? Why are we still here?"

"Natsu, please, calm down. There isn't anything that we can do to change the past. No matter what, it's too late to go back." She stood up and walked to his side, her hand moving to his shoulder and gave him a concerned look.

"Then why did they lie, Erza? I saw it with my own eyes. It was different from the rest. It was something you wouldn't see everyday. It got my attention. It gave me hope. Was I... wrong believe that?"

Erza froze, unable to answer him. She couldn't answer him.

"Through that small time, I smiled. I smiled like all of the things that had gone wrong finally disappeared. That I could finally be happy. So why was it all a lie in the end?"

"No one lied to you, Natsu. It's just that-"

"Then why?! Why isn't she here?! Why aren't they back?! I can't live like this, Erza! Every day I see it all happen again and again! Every day I see them all die right in front of me! Who's helping Mira out at the bar when Kinana's gone?! Who's going to laugh with Macao and talk about women they see when Wakaba isn't there anymore?! How can I look at Juvia in the eyes when I couldn't save Gray?!" Fresh tears fell from his eyes as he shouted. Birds flew from their nests and resting places after hearing the dragon slayer's voice echo. Each question he asked, Erza lost her control over herself. The louder he got, the more frustrated she was until she could no longer take it.

"Enough!" Erza screamed out with all of her might, effectively silencing Natsu. His red eyes stared to hers as she begun to sniffle. "You're not the only one suffering, Natsu! Everyone's been hurting since that day. I've been hurting since that day! It aches so much I can't sleep at night! Every time I go to bed, ever time I close my eyes, I see them die as well! I see him die! He keeps asking why I didn't save him and I could never give an answer! I open my mouth, but I can't say anything!" Her legs begun to tremble, losing her balance and falling to Natsu's chest.

"You think It will be as easy as wishing? Quit acting so childish! We had done nothing wrong to deserve this but regardless it happened! Our friends have done their best to move on from it! Yet look at us; what have we done?!"

She cried, her voice shouting in anguish. Although she was in emotional agony, she could feel warmth being wrapped around her. She buried her face as deep as she could into Natsu's chest and embraced him like he did her just moments ago. They held each other close, refusing to let go as they didn't have the power to stand alone. For a long time they let their feelings go; little by little. But now, the emotions flowed out of them; not unlike the watercourse nearby. It was different now. While at other times, when they let go, they felt the sudden urge to cling once more, this time, their tight hold had finally broken.

They ignored the time as it went by, simply staying in each others arms and letting all the pent up sadness flow out of them. The minutes had grown into hours while they stayed on the balcony. Their crying growing quieter, reducing to muffled sobs after finally being able to regain their bearings. Natsu was the first to loosen as he felt the night become colder. While he had no problem, he knew that it wouldn't do any good to Erza. He moved back slightly, but only to take notice that the scarlet haired woman had fallen asleep.

A smile made its way to his face, carefully maneuvering his arms around until he held her bridal style. He rose from the floor and carefully made it to the bed near them, placing her onto the mattress with care. He endeavored to exit the room, but was stopped by a hand not even before he could take the first step. His eyes looked to Erza, her own brown orbs staring calmly at the dragon slayer. From just looking at her, he knew what she was trying to ask, a small tint of pink making its way to his cheeks before he sighed.

Erza moved her body, reaching the other end of the bed, letting Natsu lie on the side to where she was prior. She inched closer, her body making contact with his, shocking Natsu until he looked only to find out sleep had already taken the scarlet haired woman. This feeling was... all too intimate. He unconsciously moved his hand up and caressed her hair before closing his eyes. "Wonder what the others thought when both the First Lieutenant and Captain weren't there for the meeting... I'm sure they didn't mind though... Erza... let's do our best." He murmured while he himself went to sleep, missing the smile Erza was giving him.

The nightmares had finally gone.

"When Morning comes

the gentle voice

will lead you

to the light."

NOTE: Some things were NOT explained on purpose. All will be revealed in the continuations.

Notice how this one began differently from the others? Yeah. When it starts out like that, it means that this one-shot is strictly staying here on FotSM. There will definitely be continuations to this, though they won't be in order. Please keep that in mind.

Polls up. Even though it doesn't mean anything, please vote. I am curious.

Also, there's someone in my school who I have never met yet nor even seen that reads my fics. I know it because a good friend of mine told me he met the person. All I have to say: Wow. This is such a small world. Still, thank you very much for reading. You really don't know how great I felt when I knew. *nods*

Now, to all readers and writers:

PLEASE REVIEW! It would make me more than happy. Especially since I had a lot of trouble with this one-shot. Feedback would really bring my spirits up; especially after the weeks I've had.

I have not edited this, so I apologize if there are mistakes. I'll fix them when I have time.

Howling God, out.