Notes: I just sort of felt like writing this so I did.
Gajeel was used to people starting fights with him. Although it was typically some tough guy trying to prove himself to his friends, not people like her.
She was so small he was pretty sure he could fit her in his pocket.
Yet her height didn't stop her from stomping up to him, finger pressed hard enough to his chest that he was sure it would leave a bruise.
"Why're you staring at me?" The words were slightly slurred, and if the flush in her cheeks hadn't told him she was drunk her breath sure would've.
"I'm not." Well that was a bit of a lie. Her bright blue hair had caught his eye, and then he'd seen her smile and he'd found it hard to look away. He thought he'd been sneaky about it, but apparently not.
Her eyes narrowed, and she jabbed his chest again.
"Don't lie to me."
He arched a brow, rings glittering in the light. He knew he shouldn't be so amused by this, but she was just so feisty. It didn't help that her equally drunk friends were cheering her on from the bar.
The finger jabbed his chest again and his gaze flashed back to his tormenter. Although he was starting to get annoyed by that finger.
"You got a problem with me, bub?"
"You look like the one with the problem."
She gasped like he'd said something personally offensive, stumbling back a step to plant her hands on her hips.
"Yer askin' to get your butt kicked, mister."
He couldn't have stopped the laughter even if he wanted to, not that he really wanted to.
She gasped again and then her arm was swinging at him, but she was too far away and she didn't even touch him. Instead her feet twisted together and she began to topple.
His laughter cut off as quickly as it had started and he reached out, his fingers just barely brushing her arm.
And she fell.
Her friends at the bar stumbled to their feet, a few of the people nearby gasped, but Gajeel just scooped her into his arms stormed through the crowd. Mira gave him one look and motioned him behind the bar and through the door marked Private.
They got her situated on the couch in the office and Mira called back her sister. Lisanna was a vet, but she had experience with humans, and she said that the girl had probably blacked out from the alcohol before she even hit the floor.
"She should be fine," Lisanna said, rising to her feet. "She'll probably wake up in an hour or two with a splitting headache." She slanted a look at Gajeel, her lips twitching with a smirk. "That was quite a scene. What'd you do to cause it?"
Gajeel glared at her, crossing his arms over his chest. "I didn't do anything. She decided she didn't like me starin' at her and got all up in my space. I wasn't even staring at her."
Lisanna laughed and Mira pressed her lips together. "You were kinda staring."
Gajeel bared his teeth, ready to snap his denial, but the door flew open and in stumbled the girl's friends. The blonde one rushed to her side, but the brunette glared at Gajeel like it was his fault.
He really hated drunk people.
"Is Levy okay?" the blonde asked, looking up at Mirajne with wide eyes. She didn't look as drunk as she'd first appeared, or maybe watching her friend pass out had sobered her up.
"She'll be fine. Just a little too much to drink." Mira patted the blonde's shoulder. "I'm going to get you guys some water. Lisanna?" They left together, the door clicking shut behind them.
Back here the music was just a vibration in the walls, and the silence of the room was almost suffocating. Gajeel shifted under the brunette's gaze, his eyes flicking between her and the girl on the couch. Levy … at least he had a name now.
"This is your fault!" the brunette snapped, stomping forward. And if she thought for one second she was going to put that finger anywhere near his chest …
He glared, but before she could get close enough to jab him the blonde was there, a hand on her shoulder.
"Cana." Her voice held warning and the brunette paused, eyes flashing to her friend's face. They seemed to talk without actually saying anything, and Cana's shoulders drooped.
"Fine," she huffed, shooting a glare at Gajeel before stomping to a nearby chair and flopping into it.
The blonde stared at her for a beat longer before turning to Gajeel, her smile bright and professional. He bet she was a reporter.
"Sorry about them," she said. "They've had a bit too much to drink."
She definitely wasn't as drunk as he'd thought, and he grunted.
"I'm Lucy." She held her hand out, but when he just stared at it she let it drop back to her side. "Okay then."
Mira returned with a couple of water bottles, but she had a job to do so she couldn't hang around, and Gajeel shifted slightly. He wasn't sure why he was hanging around still. Levy had her friends, they'd make sure she was okay …
But he did feel like it was partially his fault that she was like this.
He huffed and lowered himself to the floor next to the couch, his back pressed against the armrest and his arms resting on his knees. He'd just hang around long enough to make sure she woke up okay, and then he'd be on his way.
"I really am sorry about them," Lucy said, sitting on the edge of Cana's chair. The brunette had fallen asleep at some point in time, and Lucy ran a hand through her hair. "I knew I should've cut them off … but I never thought Levy would do something like that."
Lucy shook her head, her fingers pausing in Cana's hair. "She'd been staring at you all night," she continued, her gaze focusing on Levy. "I thought she was just going to go talk but then she got all up in your face and I knew I should've gone and stopped her … but it was funny. Didn't realize she'd actually throw a punch."
Gajeel huffed a laugh, glancing at Levy. He wasn't all that surprised. She might look small, but she was a pixie. And everyone knew pixies were troublemakers.
"It's fine," he rumbled, and it was fine. The previous annoyance he had felt had faded, and now it was just sort of … endearing.
Cana stirred and grumbled something, and Lucy pursed her lips.
"Can I trust you to take care of her?"
Gajeel arched a brow, surprised by the sudden change of topic, but found himself nodding.
"Alright, then I'm going to leave Levy in your care." Lucy got to her feet, tugging Cana with her. "I'll leave my number with Mirajane in case you need anything."
Cana was grumbling and clearly trying to fight leaving, but she was drunk and half-asleep and Lucy easily got her out of the room.
And suddenly Gajeel was alone with Levy.
At first he paced, not feeling right just sitting next to her, but then he got tired of that and decided to sit in the chair Cana had been in. Except then he felt like he was just staring at her and that was too creepy for him so he started pacing again.
He was halfway across the room when she finally woke up.
It was very sudden. One minute she was asleep, and the next she was sitting up. He was at her side with a wastebasket immediately, glad he'd thought to grab it when she snatched it from his hand and curled around it. He held her hair out of her face until she was done, taking the basket away and handing her a Kleenex to wipe her mouth.
He knew the minute she truly came awake. Her eyes widened and her hand froze over her mouth as she stared at him.
"Oh god," she groaned, dropping her head. Her hair fell in front of her face, but he still saw the blush in her cheeks. "I'm not drunk enough for this anymore."
Gajeel chuckled, and sat back on his heels, giving her some space. "That's probably a good thing."
Levy pulled a face, glancing at him from beneath her bangs.
"Did I really try to hit you?" He nodded and she groaned again. "That was not my plan."
"And what was your plan?"
She flushed, shifting slightly. "Uh, well … I was going to try to ask you to dance. But then I got there and you were even more attractive in person and I got scared and … the rest is kind of a blur."
"You think I'm attractive?"
Levy's eyes widened and she shook her head. "I'm still drunk."
"Well, I'm Gajeel."
She laughed and shifted slightly so her face was no longer hidden. "Smooth. Next are you going to slip your number into the conversation? Maybe casually mention you're single, which is such a coincidence because wow I'm single too."
She grinned and then he was laughing and so was she. He wasn't sure how long they laughed, but by the time he finished his sides were hurting and she was gasping for breath.
"What kind of laugh is that?" she gasped, wiping the wetness from her eyes.
"Hey, don't make fun of my laugh!"
Her shoulders still shook with the occasional chuckle, but they'd finally managed to get control of their laughter.
"Sorry," she murmured. "It's cute."
He flushed and glanced away with a huff.
"I ain't cute."
She patted his shoulder with a small smile, leaning back into the couch with a sigh.
"Did Lucy and Cana abandon me?"
She nodded, taking a deep breath and pushing herself to her feet. Gajeel had to stare up at her, and he found he didn't mind. He got a great view of her ass from down here.
"Well, thank you for taking care of me. But I think it's time I called a cab and headed home." She glanced down at him, her lips twitching with a smile. "Sorry about everything. I probably ruined your night."
He got to his feet, and yeah, he liked her looking up at him too. "You didn't," he said. "Ruin my night, that is. In fact … you made it better." He flashed a grin and she flushed.
"I—well—I should go."
He grabbed her wrist before he could really think about it.
"How about I give you a ride home?" She hesitated and he dropped her wrist. "I'm sober, I swear."
She drew her bottom lip between her teeth and his gaze snagged on the motion. She had nice lips, pink and pouty.
"You've already done so much for me …"
He shrugged, sliding around her. "Suit yourself."
It was her turn to stop him, her small fingers clutching the hem of his shirt. He bit back a smile and turned to face her, arching a brow.
"I would love a ride," she said to his feet.
He smiled, opening the door so she could step through. Mira was watching them as they passed, a glint in her eyes that told him everyone was going to be hearing about this. And yet … he found he didn't mind.
Especially not after he dropped Levy at her house, her friends both staring quite obviously from the window. She flushed, but she still turned to Gajeel and brushed her mouth over his cheek. She still scrawled her number on his hand, making him promise to call her.
And when he finally drove home he knew his grin was idiotic, but he didn't care.