BlackLynx17: Sorry for the horrible mistakes in my last chapter, truly I am sorry and have fixed it. I didn't feel like posting a new one up, but thought you all deserved one so I did it. After a nap though I went back to fix the mistakes, sorry for that.
Thanks for my reviews everyone, this chapter was updated a little late because it was longer than I usually make it. Hope you enjoy.
~ Say I Love You ~
~ Eighteenth Love ~
"NATSUME!" Lucy screamed running into the room.
Upon entering she saw her precious baby Natsume in the arms of her servant, Gray, who was making silly faces to make the girl laugh. Lucy's face brightened up as she ran over to the two of them and demanded her daughter from him.
"She slept like a baby all last night," Gray told her handing Natsume over.
By the time Lucy was holding her baby, there were tears in her eyes.
"Natsume, oh Natsume. I'm sorry I left you to sleep all alone, I'm a horrible Mother." She cried.
Natsu shook his head as he walked into the room next, "such a drama queen. She wasn't alone, she was in here with Gray and Mirajane all night."
"Actually Juvia and Mirajane, I just got here a few minutes ago to take over for Mirajane." Gray said scratching his head.
"Oh, then where's Juvia?" Lucy asked, her tears suddenly vanishing.
"Getting the bath ready, morning Mistress Lucy." Juvia said walking out of the bathroom.
"Morning Juvia, oh and to you too Gray. And absolutely GOOD morning to you Natsume!" Lucy cheered holding her up in the air.
Natsume started to make baby noises as she held her hands towards her Daddy. Lucy's heart broke as her daughter reached out for her Father, who took her away from Lucy's loving arms. Lucy then turned to Gray, who was the nearest person to her, and started crying onto his chest.
"I carried her in my stomach for nine months and she just ups and abandons me like that, ah Natsume." She cried.
Gray froze then looked at Juvia for guidance, she was just making googly eyes at him though so he looked over to Natsu, who was glaring daggers at him for touching his woman. Gray finally gave up and patted Milady's head.
"Good morning Mistress Lucy." He sighed.
"Morning Gray, but I already said that. Silly me." Lucy said getting back up like she hadn't been crying a view seconds ago.
She walked over to her doors and stuck her head out into the corridor. She looked both ways before walking back into her room and closing the door, locking it after her.
"Alright everyone, into the bathroom." Lucy said walking back towards her friends.
The three servants all looked at each other before staring back at her.
"Huh?" They asked, needing a repeat of the words she just said.
"Go into the bathroom, there are matters we need to discuss there." Lucy said shooing them in.
Gray walked in first, looking warily behind his shoulder, with Juvia surely following after him and then Natsu carrying Natsume. Lucy walked in last, locking the door behind her as she closed the thing.
"What's going on Lucy?" Natsu whispered.
"I hate you Natsu." Lucy glared.
"Because Natsume wanted you more than she wanted me!"
"Our daughter barely sees me, of course she'd want me more."
"But I'm her Mother!"
"Well I'm her Father!"
"WHAT?!" Natsu and Lucy yelled at Gray.
"Never mind, it wasn't important." Gray mumbled taking a step back.
Lucy blinked then sighed, "oh right. Here Natsu, while you explain some things to our friends over there, I'll give our child a bath." Lucy said reaching for Natsume.
"Explain?" Natsu repeated.
"Ex-plaaaian," she stressed out.
"Oh, I got it. Explain, right." Natsu nodded.
Lucy shook her head as she held onto Natsume, while Natsu walked over to Gray and Juvia.
"Alright Gray, Juvia, listen up."
"..." Gray took a deep breath.
"You owe me this much Gray, matter of fact you owe me more, but this is all I'm asking from you." Natsu said.
"I know, fuck I know man." Gray sighed running his hands through his hair.
"Language in front of baby Natsume!" Lucy hissed.
Natsume started playing with the bubbles in her bath and giggled, splashing around. Lucy, getting splashed, giggled and started scrubbing her daughter's back.
"Sorry Lucy, but yeah Natsu. Not only because I owe you though, also because you and Lucy... you're like family to me. Without her I would have been jobless and without you... I'd probably had done a better job at this job but yeah. If it'll help her and baby Natsume, I won't mind losing our precious Mistress." Gray grinned.
Natsu grinned back and pulled Gray into a hug. It was one of those rare brotherly moments between the two of them.
"It's all water under the bridge now, thanks." He mumbled.
Gray laughed and hugged him back briefly before pushing him off, "alright, alright." He said brushing down his shirt before turning to Juvia.
"One person should be enough for this Juvia, there's no need for you to ris-"
"What would be the point of working here if I wasn't able to have you as a partner?" Juvia asked.
She smiled lightly at him before turning back to Natsu and Lucy, "though yeah I love you guys too and all my other friends and cutie baby Natsume, I'm in love with Gray. Whenever you go, I will surely follow so you can count me in." Juvia smiled.
Gray turned red in embarrassment and Lucy just had to ask, "what kind of man are you Gray!? The women aren't supposed to confess their love first, the men are! You better marry this girl right now!"
"Shut up!" Gray hissed turning back to Juvia and chuckling nervously.
"Hi." He told her.
Juvia giggled in her hand, "hello."
"ANYWAYS, we have our dummies. We just need our safe houses then... we're free." Natsu smiled.
And as the days progressed on and on, Lucy found herself believing in this plan more and more. But no one could have planned out what was going to come soon.
Two days had passed. In those two days... nothing much happened. Natsu relayed to Dr. Hiluluk about Gray and Juvia being alright the running away from Magnolia in the plan. Cana had been written a letter about it, seeing as how she lived near the ocean where they would need to cross to get to Natsu's hometown. Though she hadn't responded yet, Lucy knew she would be willing to help in any way she could. Gray's hometown was two towns away from Magnolia, Juvia's four, so the plan was that after Lucy escaped, she was going to meet up with Gray and go back to his hometown posing as his cousin with little Natsume.
They would wait there for a week or so for Natsu to quit and come join them then the three would journey off to Juvia's hometown, which was just on the outskirts of Fiore, where they would live as a happy family of five and one pet for a month or two. Natsu couldn't just leave his precious cat behind, even though he only visits him two times a month and Gazille was mostly the one taking care of him. Pets weren't allowed in the Heartfilia Estate, anyway after the month had passed the young friends would part ways and continue towards Cana's hometown where they would rest for a while then cross the seas over to Natsu's hometown.
All the while Natsu has been going over these plans, Lucy stayed in her room the entire time. She didn't feel like leaving, not wanting to risk seeing Dan or her Father... or both while she was out. She ignored her summonses and had been staying in her room with her two maids, Mirajane and Erza, and her child. Right now the two of them were playing on the rug with Natsume, trying to hold her up right, while Lucy laid in her bed staring up at the ceiling. A knock on the door broke everyone out of their trance.
"Who is it?" Lucy called out.
"It is I, Lisanna."
Mirajane blinked and turned her head towards the door.
"Do you need something from me sister?" She called.
"I was rather hoping to speak to Mistress Lucy."
Upon hearing her name, Lucy rose up from her bed. She was wearing her sleeping gown and didn't bother putting on anything else as she dragged her feet towards the door. She unlocked it and held it open just a crack, barely giving any insight on the room. Lisanna stood in front of the door with her hands placed neatly by her sides.
"Yes?" Lucy yawned.
She wasn't even tired and she was yawning, strange she thought. Maybe she was just getting there, or needed a little nap or something.
"I was hoping to talk to you about a private matter, may I come in?" Lisanna asked taking a step forward.
"How about I step out?" Lucy replied closing the door slightly.
She turned her head back around towards her two maids, "I'll be back soon," then took a step out her room. She closed the door behind and leaned against it, waiting for Lisanna to start. When she didn't, Lucy wondered.
"Oh, um. How about we take a walk to the study?" Lisanna suggested.
"Rather not, state your business so I may return to my chambers." Lucy said.
Lisanna blushed scarlet, the courage she had felt before vanishing. She had everything planned out, to enter her Mistress's room, ask the question, if avoided come up with another way to ask the question, every little single fact but when she was refused upon entry, Lisanna had to come up with a new plan. With that plan being denied also and with the two of them just standing in the hallway, Lisanna didn't know just what to do.
"You are wasting my time Lisanna, what is it that yo-"
"I want to be let in on it!" Lisanna yelled.
Lucy blinked as Lisanna caught her breath, that yell had taken all the courage she had to say.
"The secret, the secret you're keeping with Mirajane and Erza, with all the servants who have been allowed to talk to you freely. I want to be let in on the secret you've been hiding from everyone." Lisanna repeated herself, adding more detail this time.
Lucy started giggling, it was light as it was bubbly and made Lisanna look like a fool. She got frustrated a little, her light blush darkening with embarrassment.
"What?!" Lisanna yelled.
"You'll learn wisely to keep your tone down with me." Lucy glared.
Lisanna bit her tongue and took a step back.
"I am your Master here, yell at me again and your punishment will not be light."
"Yes Mistress Lucy."
"And about this thing you've been babbling to me about, this secret. I haven't the slightest clue on what you're talking about. I don't know how this notion got into your head, but it'd be wise if you forgot all about it. Someone must be playing tricks on you, that is the reason I laughed. Now if that is all-"
"It isn't. What about with Natsume then?" Lisanna asked.
"What about my child?"
"How come you won't let anyone see her? How come she stays locked up in your room with servants around her? How come I've never been asked to watch over her as my sister has?" Lisanna asked, trapping her now.
But no, the reaction Lucy gave her did not go as planned. Nothing seemed to be going as planned. Her Mistress had blushed, then smiled brightly. She had sighed out dreamily and hugged herself, staring up into the ceiling with sparkling eyes.
"My little darling Natsume, she's just the cutest child this world has ever seen!" Lucy bragged.
Lisanna raised an eyebrow.
"Her voice is like heaven, her giggles like an angel, her beauty could not be compared to any summer's day, and her eyes. Oh how they look so remarkably similar to my own and my Mother's. She's just the cutest little thing and when she claps?! Oh!" Lucy continued to brag stating all the random facts about her daughter.
Lisanna watched and listened, confused on what was happening at the moment. This was a serious matter to her, but here Lucy was all happy and laughing. What changed the atmosphere so much like this? Just because she mentioned the daughter?
"And that is exactly why I haven't let Natsume out of my room and sight if I can. She's so cute that people would try and kidnap her, I shall have no one harm my daughter so that's why she stays locked up like a princess in a fairy tale. The cutest little princess in all of Fiore." Lucy sighed.
Lisanna was understanding now. Cute, daughter, kidnap, locked up, sigh.
"But Mirajane and Erz-"
"I trust those two with my baby, they've been my fateful servants for years."
"But so have I!" Lisanna yelled at her.
Lucy blinked, "I don't trust you, you're a child compared to them."
Lisanna bit her lips and clenched onto her skirt, angry.
"We're nearly the same age!" She yelled.
"Why are you comparing yourself to me? You're nothing like me, to even try and compare your lowly self to a Mistress like me is an insult. I was born into an esteem family with standards while you were born probably on a farm somewhere! And how dare you talk back like this to me, have you lost your mind?!" Lucy yelled at Lisanna's face.
She didn't give her the time to react though, "go! Never show your face in front of me again or else I'll convince my Father to throw your butt onto the curve and don't ever, ever think about comparing me to someone as lowly as yourself or speak back like you have today again! I am married, I have a child, I have fulfilled my duties as a woman and what have you done huh? Nothing, just a pathetic maid with no suitor, no child, and no future. You say we are the same age and yet in my eyes you're nothing more than a child that has accomplished nothing in her life."
"That is untrue! I have Natsu as my suitor, we'll soon have a child and won't have to work in this dingy household ever again!" Lisanna argued back.
It was pitiful really, in Lucy's eyes. She truly pitied the youngest Strauss and should have left it there. She should have let Lisanna believe in that little hope and walk back into her room, but no. She was describing a future with her man, with her child's Father. Lucy was not about to stand for that, but she didn't believe in violence. So instead, she laughed. It wasn't a nice laugh, it was a teasing one.
"Natsu? The young servant boy? Lisanna honey can you do no better than that? That's not something you should be bragging about girl, I believe you'd be better off living alone. Besides, from what I've heard Erza talk about just minutes ago before you knocked on my door, it seems Natsu is trying to court her. From what she makes out to be, she and Natsu are already lovers. Now someone has to be lying here but judging by the love mark that seems to be on Erza's neck, I believe the lying one here is you Lisanna." Lucy smiled.
Lisanna... Lisanna...she started crying. In frustration, in anger, because of sadness, because of reality. Lucy wasn't fazed in the slightest about it though, she didn't even bat an eye.
"I was serious about staying away, that is a permanent order. Spouting ridiculous lies in my face as well, have you no shame?" Lucy turned her head around from her and entered back into her room, slamming the door on Lisanna's face.
She walked further into the room and near her child, sitting down on the rug with the other maids. She watched as her child play before tears of her own flashed in her eye then threw herself onto Erza.
"What happened?" Mirajane asked as Erza tried to calm down her mistress.
"Your sister somehow believes we're keeping a secret and defied my authority, she started questioning me and I lashed out at her when she spoke ill of Natsu and herself. I couldn't help it, I couldn't control it. I've never acted like that ever before, I seemed like my Father doing such a cruel thing." Lucy cried.
"She what?" Mirajane gasped.
"Then she said she was with child, Natsu's child and I was blinded by jealousy! I led her to believe Erza and Natsu were coupling, crashing her hopes in the dirt and left her crying outside in the hallway."
"LUCY!" Mirajane screamed.
"She deserved that part, but not to be insulted by me like she was. I can't apologize to her though, I can't. I would have fired her if it wasn't for her blood relations to you, she just talked to me with so much jealousy and envy in her eyes." Lucy said pulling back.
She wiped her tear away with her fingers until Erza gave her a handkerchief to dot her eyes dry.
"Erza, I'm sorry for the inconvenience but you'll have to be Natsu's pretend lover for a while, just in front of her though. If anyway mentions it to you just blush and turn away, stutter while you deny." Lucy ordered.
"Huh? Wha-wha- huh?!" Erza gasped.
"Yes, exactly like that. You'll have no trouble at all, and Mirajane? You are free to leave and go comfort your sister, but send in a replacement first and don't tell her a soul. I know she's your sister and I'm just some employe-"
"Friend, not just some friend, my special friend." Mirajane said standing up.
She bowed down towards her Mistress, "I'm sorry on my sister's behave if she offended you in any way Lucy. I shall have a talk with her and don't worry, her love for Natsu is just some feeble crush. Lisanna is a strong girl, she'll recover from it surely. With that being said, though this may sound harsh, I care about you and little Natsume's safety more than I do about my sister's feelings. I will not jeopardize all the hardships you've been put through these past several years just to spare my sister a few tears. Compared to your sorrows and sadness, hers seems like nothing."
Lucy smiled, "Mirajane. I'm sor-"
"Don't, it's alright Lucy. Lisanna sometimes has that effect to bring the worse out in people, so I wouldn't worry about that incident. You're such a kind person Lucy, but very serious when it comes to the people you love. I can respect that, it's a good trait in a person. Now if you excuse me, I'll be back shortly." Mirajane said finishing her speech.
Lucy and Erza watched her leave, Natsume also wondering where the pretty lady was going.
"She forgave me too easily." Lucy mumbled once Mirajane left.
"That's just her nature Lucy," Erza answered.
"I'm not scared; I don't believe she'll betray me."
"Then you truly consider her your friend, because Mirajane wouldn't do such a thing. Even if, like she so put it, it were to spare Lisanna a few tears. It's still nothing compared to your own." Erza smiled lightly rubbing her cheeks.
"Why is no one punishing me though? I did a horrible thing to a good person."
"Wouldn't you say your life living here is punishing enough?"
Lucy sighed and picked up her baby, holding her tightly to her chest.
"I won't ever let you go through what I went Natsume, I swear my life on this."
"Lisanna? Lisanna?" Mirajane spoke as she entered their room.
Lisanna laid on her bed, crying into one of her pillows. When she heard her sister's voice she looked up and flung herself into her embrace.
"Mira, oh Mira." Lisanna cried onto her chest.
Mirajane just shushed her little sister and hugged her, petting the top of her head.
"I've never, been so embarrassed, in my whole life!" She cried.
"Why did you talk to her then?" Mirajane asked.
Lisanna pulled away from her and stared, "it's not fair! How come I'm not in on this secret, how come I'm the only one who doesn't know? I was only trying to as-"
"And that was your mistake Lisanna." Mirajane interrupted.
Lisanna blinked at her.
"You're never supposed to question the Masters, I thought I taught you this already." Mirajane scolded.
"But it's unfair!"
"Again, I taught you this Lisanna. If you can't obey the rules then quit, they're not making you stay here Lisanna. They could care less about your feelings, about you, they just want servants not friends. If you don't like the way you're being treated then quit, there's nothing you can say to them with our status."
"Why? Why are you taking her side?!"
"I'm not, I'm just telling you the truth."
"A truth I cannot handle!"
Huh... Mirajane found herself in this argument once before, on the receiving end of it though. When her Mistress had an argument with Natsu... she didn't fully understand why she did back then but now... it became clearer to her. Sometimes you just had to be honest, even if the honesty was harsh and cruel.
"Please Mira, what is the secret? Why is Lucy staying locked up in her room? Why won't she let anyone see Natsume? Why did she have that huge argument with her husband and father? Doesn't she love them? They give her everything she ever wants and she treats them like-"
"Enough! Lisanna, I don't know what you are saying. There is no secret, nothing of the sort. Mistress Lucy is just paranoid that we will love Natsume to much and arguments between our Masters are none of our business." Mirajane snapped.
Lisanna pushed her away and stepped back, lightly shaking her head.
"Why? Why! I'm your sister! You're own flesh and blood, why are you lying to me?!"
"You owe nothing to her, she is just some tramp who embarrassed your sister so why aren't you on my side?! Why aren't you trying to comfort me?!"
"Don't just stand there lying to my face Mi-"
Mirajane had enough of her sister's whining. She couldn't take any more of it and she the longer she talked, the more angry she got at her. So angry, she was blinded in a rage and slapped her sister's face.
"Stop acting like a child Lisanna, you are sixteen years old!" Mirajane yelled.
Lisanna cupped her cheek and looked back at her sister.
"I've had enough about you're complaining about our Masters! If you don't like this job then quit Lisanna, no one is keeping you here! Move back to town and get a different job instead of crying about how much you dislike this one! Stop acting like a brat and start acting like a maid!"
"I am not a brat."
"Well then stop acting like one!"
"And I'm not a child so stop treating me as one!"
Mirajane and Lisanna just stared off at each other.
"I love you Lisanna, you know I do. You're my only sister, but you need to grow up. You need to stop acting like this, like the world around you cares about you. We aren't living at home with our parents as a family anymore, it's time to grow up. We need to thrive to survive Lisanna and if you can't even grasp that... then what are you doing here?"
Lisanna looked away.
"Now because of you I had to forget about my job and go and comfort you, leaving behind a crying baby and Mistress. Because of you, our Mistress is crying her eyes out for doing such a terrible thing to you."
Lisanna snorted, "yeah right. If it was such a bad thing why'd she do it in the first place?"
"Because you need to be reminded of your place!" Mirajane snapped.
Lisanna flinched and turned around.
"She immediately regretted it, I don't know if you've noticed but our Mistress is such a kind person. She's so nice and just... breaks so easily. She already has enough on her plate then you come in and just add more," Mirajane took a deep breath, "I'll finish up you're duties for today. What I want you do to though is stay in here and really think about you're future Lisanna for the rest of the day. If you can't obey orders and learn to grow up, I don't think there is a place for you here." She said walking towards the door.
"I only came here because you and Elfman talked about it all the time." Lisanna whispered.
Mirajane paused for a second.
"Did either of us ask you to come though? Yes, I was overjoyed to learn that you would be working with us but did I ask you to work here Lisanna?"
Lisanna didn't have an answer for that.
"I knew it was hard work, that's why I never invited you. When you came by yourself I thought you were ready to take on responsibility. I was worried also though, because Elfman and I only wanted the best for you. That's why we both got jobs and worked so hard, to support you and let you do whatever you wanted to. Really think about this Lisanna, it's not too late to change your mind."
And with that Mirajane left, leaving her sister to question and ponder about what she really wanted in her life.