BlackLynx17: Today is Good Friday people. Thank you Jesus for dying for our sins. I went to a church group today and it really, really opened my eyes. My eyes were always opened, but it just showed me different things and it was just an amazing experience.

Back to anime though. I don't know what you are going to think about this chapter, I don't know what I think about it. I could not think up of a name for Natsu's Mother so I was just going to call her Hiro like the author of Fairy Tail. I thought it would be nice, but it sounded to guyish and I wanted to call her Kira next like in Death Note because she's evil and I hate her...well Lucy hates her. You'll see the name I decided below, thanks for the reviews!

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Mythical Creatures

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Chapter 50

Vanilla Good-bye

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"Here, you've probably come a long way," Auntie Scarlet said, offering the woman a box of tissues and a cup of coffee.

She accepted them with a gorgeous smile and dabbed a few dots of eyeliner away from her face. I was sitting across from her at the dining table with Natsu and Sting sitting next to me. As soon as Mrs. Dragneel released MY FAMILY I stuck myself between the two of them. Mrs. Dragneel just stared at me; I was glaring at her until Auntie Scarlet suggested we all moved towards the living room.

Natsu had his head lowered to face the table, Sting was tapping his knees while biting his lips, but both of them were holding my hands for support. I gave it to them fully and stared at Mrs. Dragneel sitting across from us.

"Akira Dragneel," Mrs. Dragneel said sweetly up at Auntie Scarlet, the warmness of her smile making me sick.

Auntie Scarlet placed a hand on Akira's leg and gently tapped it, a sign of encouragement that she always gives. "How'd you find us here?" She asked, pulling back into her chair.

Akira looked down into her lap then turned her head to watch Natsu and Sting for the millionth time since she got here. Sting met her gaze head on while Natsu obviously noticed that she was looking and hesitantly looked back at her.

"I heard about the situation on a news broadcast back at home," She looked back at Auntie Scarlet, "Back at Hargeon."

I pulled back my glass of water just before I was about to drink from it and stared at Akira through the water that sloshed around in the cup. Hargeon? That was miles and miles from here.

"The news spread that quickly?" Auntie Scarlet gasped, scooting forward into her chair.

Akira nodded a bit sadly. "At first I thought that it was too unbelievable to be true. This town is much safer than most." She smiled widely and scanned her eyes across the ceiling above. "When I heard Igneel's name, I didn't want to believe it."

"The officers told all of us to stay indoors...L-Lucy snuck out. She wanted to find me."

I looked over at Natsu after hearing him speak for the first time in forever. The whole world gets a little boring when he's not talking. You keep wondering what's going through his head and what he's planning to do next.

Akira perked up and spun around a bit in her chair to face him. "She did?" She shot her eyes my way and I instantly felt pinned. "Oh, honey, you did?" She asked me, a few tears running down her cheeks.

I didn't fall for her scared act, I wouldn't let her in so easily like everyone else. I was going to keep my guard up.

"Someone had to save them, I couldn't just turn my back and abandon them." I told her.

I felt Natsu and Sting both squeeze my hand tightly; there was a certain flicker of pain through her eyes. Even though she was crying, she managed to curve a smile. She touched the tip of her chin with her fingers then moved them away in my direction. She must've seen the bandages on my left arm since she said, "I heard he hurt you..."

I blinked quickly. "I barely notice it." Lies.

"He got all of us. I have a friend that's...that's supposed to stay in the hospital for a couple of weeks," Natsu added, suddenly getting more and more involved.

Erza! "Auntie Scarlet! Any changes on Erza?" I asked.

She was more important than anything else to me at the moment, even more than Natsu and Sting. She was my savior, my sister, a person I could have always, always relied on no matter thick or thin if only I had...if I just had reached out and asked her.

"The doctor says she's still doing well, no changes though. Uncle Scarlet said he was talking to her and swore he felt Erza squeeze his hand." Auntie Scarlet said.

I sighed and started nodding. Good, good, good, that was good. I turned my attention back at Akira and saw that she was now holding both Sting's and Natsu's free hand. How did that happen?

"I'm sorry." She said.

Sorry? Sorry for what? There were several things she should be sorry for, I just want to see which one she was apologizing for first!

"You...you don't have to be sorry." Natsu didn't look up at her. His voice sounded like someone stole part of it away. He just kept looking at the table top then at me then back again.

... if my hands weren't occupied right now I would have smacked Natsu's head. She has hellah reasons to be sorry!... maybe Natsu's a momma's boy.

"You've grown so big Natsu, both of you have. And you still wearing my scarf," Akira smiled softly.

Natsu cleared his throat and nodded. He made it clear that he wasn't going to add anything to that so Akira continued talking.

"Igneel wasn't always such a bad person. When we met, he was so protective of me...he promised that he would never let anyone come between us." Now this was really turning into a soap opera. When I looked at the dreamy look on Auntie Scarlet's face, I knew that she was ultimately entertained by this.

Akira sighed and stared at her coffee cup. "When Natsu was born, it was then that I noticed that he wasn't really the father-figure."

At the sound of that, Natsu looked at her in the corner of his eye with an 'oh really' written on his face. That's my Natsu.

"Igneel never really played with him. The only time he did do anything with Natsu was when he told him to look at a camera when he wanted a picture. Even then he didn't take much interest. That's when I decided that maybe he was bored with one child so I agreed to take in a foster baby for a while to see how our family would react. It wasn't a surprise that Igneel would be interested...he only wanted Sting because of the money."

"Oh, how terrible," Auntie Scarlet said in disgust. Tch, old story.

"Well, we eventually adopted Sting since Natsu got so attached to him. After that, Igneel became a father...but not toward his real son. Igneel never knew that Sting was no longer a foster baby so we no longer received payment for having him in the house. I suppose he figured that out when he recently visited me with Sting some weeks ago."

Natsu stiffened immensely beside me. So that's why Sting wasn't reacting like Natsu, he knew where she was this entire time and it seems Natsu never knew. I thought back for a bit. When Igneel was gone with Sting, Natsu said that Sting tagged along to straighten the man out. So all this time his trips had been to Hargeon to visit Akira? For what reason? So Sting really did know he was adopted all along? He really did know where Akira was?

"Igneel and I divorced when the kids were almost five years old. He was becoming a bit abusive...but he wasn't doing anything to the kids so I figured that, being as protective as he was with me, he would somehow be able to care for them on his own. So...I left. I entirely regret it. Igneel said that he would let Sting see me every now and then as for Natsu...nothing. I gave Sting letters and pictures to give to Natsu but he always told me Natsu never sent anything back."

All eyes were on Sting now, Natsu's hand squeezing mine so hard that I flinched away.

"Why?" Natsu asked.

"I wanted to protect you. When Mom first left you were so shaken up Natsu, I, I wanted to protect you at first. I was always planning on telling you but then you got better and I was just worried if you knew that I knew where Mom was that's you'd... overreact." Sting tried to explain.

I patted Sting on the back, good job looking out. Natsu didn't feel the same way though.

"Over? React? Overreact?! HOW COULD YOU KEEP SOMETHING LIKE THIS FROM ME?! I THOUGHT WE WERE BROTHERS!" Natsu yelled overacting.

"Boys, sweeties, please stop fighting. We're together now so let the past stay behind us. I just want you two to know that I'm sorry. It was selfish of me to leave you behind...to get hurt...and for your friends to get hurt."

It became quiet suddenly, Akira looked up at Auntie Scarlet and asked, "would you mind if I took my boys out? We have so much to catch up on?"

NO!

"Of course, they're your sons." Auntie Scarlet said.

"I'll bring them back later on tonight, I'm currently staying with a friend right now and I'm sure the boys wouldn't want to just up and live with me after so many years." Akira said then looked towards the three of us, "Natsu? Sting? Would you two like to go out for some ice cream with me?"

I snorted, releasing both of the 'boys' hands to cover my mouth.

"Excuse me," I said getting up and walking out the kitchen.

Get ice cream? What was she trying to do? Make up for some lost times? What was going to happen now? Did she think after a couple of scoops they could talk everything out and they'd just let her back into their lives?! After everything's she's done?! Why is everyone acting so nice to her?! Didn't she abandon her kids?! Leave them with such an abusive person as Igneel?! I growled in frustration as I walked into Erza's room and kicked the door close.

She had to be the worst Mother in the universe! How could she think Igneel would be a good parent?! Didn't she even realize he was on drugs?! Or dealing drug?! What kind of wife was she?! I felt myself getting angrier and angrier as I started thinking more and more about that vile woman. How could they pretend like nothing she ever did was wrong?! What was the matter with everyone?!"

"Lucy?"

I didn't hear the door open; I looked behind me and saw Natsu standing just outside the room. I was doing anything too crazy as before I realized he was watching me; just running my hands through my hair and kicking Erza's bedframe. I walked up to him and started rubbing his cheek, "you okay?"

"It's just...short notice, you know? I mean, this lady's my...my mother. And with Sting keeping it from me and just," Natsu exhaled loudly, "it's a lot to take in."

"Do you believe her?" I asked, more seriously.

He paused before saying, "is it wrong if I say I do?"

"But is that enough for you to forgive her for everything?"

"I'm just not used to having a parent...until now, Sting and my gang was all I had."

I hate to admit that hurt a little bit. I swallowed and looked at my toes, letting them flick against each other. Geez, I had to stop being so selfish. So what if he didn't mention my name? I shouldn't care, I didn't care... I wasn't what he considered he had in the world.

"Was that all you wanted talk to me about?" I asked, not wanting to see him suddenly.

"Just wanted to tell you that Sting and I were going to go with her, catch up you know."

So he was leaving. The room got quiet with the exception of the three chatting away downstairs. I waited for him to leave but he didn't, he just stood there still.

"Natsu?" I didn't say something wrong, did I? Because I was sure I was only thinking about the wrong things in my mind.

"And you..." He said hugging me. "I've got you too."

I bit my lip and sighed, letting him embrace me. Natsu was important to me, so was Sting too. Both of them, they've found a way to get in, I cared for them. I truly loved them both will all my heart...and I felt something dreadful inside of me..

"Natsu! Get your butt in gear!" Sting called from downstairs.

"I'll be back soon, leave your door unlocked so I can sneak in." Natsu winked pulling away.

As I watched him leave I felt this fear come through me. Mother left me, father left me, Erza almost left me... I had a feeling Natsu and Sting were going to leave me soon because of this lady.

"Natsu!"

Natsu paused and looked back up at me.

"Just don't... forgive her so easily okay? I don't want to... just keep your guard up." I mumbled.

Natsu smiled and nodded.

"Love you Lucy."

"Love you too."

Deep down, I wish I didn't.


Some time passed with no word or return of Natsu or Sting. I laid on Erza's bed alone, Slobster somewhere on the floor or under the bed, and gently closed my eyes. I woke up later to the sound of the bed shaking and... whimpering.

I was surprised at how dark it was in her room though I'm sure it was early in the morning. The faint blue glow of the moon or sun, whatever, fell over my bed that currently had sheets pulled tightly over something...or someone. I moaned and rubbed my eyes.

"N-Natsu?" I asked.

The whimpering stopped, the figure under the covers with me stilled.

"Hey, are you asleep?" When he didn't respond, I raised a hand and inched it closer to where I saw salmon spikes poking out from underneath the blanket. I stopped when my hand touched a soggy spot on the pillow. Confused, I froze my hand over the spot and touched it again. Was he drooling? I smiled tiredly.

"Don't drool all over my pillow," I teased and carefully pulled the blankets away. When I did, I saw that his back was turned toward me and his shoulders were trembling. Dreaming maybe? Prying with questions unanswered, I scooted closer to him until my chin was nearly touching his trembling body.

Natsu was crying.

I wasn't seeing things...there were really drops slipping down his face and onto the pillow and sheets. He was staring mindlessly at his open hands, making little sobbing noises every now and then. I could tell he was trying to stop. I didn't want him to. I just wanted to know why.

"Why?" I simply asked, resting a hand on his pillow.

He opened his mouth but nothing came out. He waited for a few more tears to spill out before giving me broken words.

"She...She...me...away."

"What?"

"M-Mom...taking...me away."

I stopped thinking.

"Really?"

It took a while for him to respond, but he did, still not facing me or anything else for that matter. "Trust me..." He sniffed once and started again. "...I didn't believe it...either." He sounded like he'd just been stepped on.

That's when the room got freakishly quiet. I pulled the covers from off of me and stood up, slowly making my way to Erza's bathroom and locking the door behind me.

What...the hell? Did someone hate me right now?

...

Was what I heard even real? It couldn't be. But Natsu was crying, those tears weren't fake.

...

I was flat out losing everything. But this...god, what was I gonna do? I sat myself on the toilet seat and held my hands in my head, breathing in and out. I hate it when I'm right, I really truly hated that about me. I never wanted to love him, I knew he was going to leave me. Gray tried to make this whole speech about me being able to make him stay, ha. Lie, Natsu promising me that we'd be together, more lies.

This wouldn't be the end of the world, I knew it wouldn't be but... my hand started cluchting my chest. Why am I feeling this way?! Why does this hurt so much?! It feels like someone was ripping my heart out and crushing it right in front of me! I haven't felt this way since, since, my parents died.

... What did I do to make myself feel better back then?... I looked down at my pocket and reached in it, holding out a little bottle.

"I'll come clean, after this night I'll confess all my sins and really try my best to return to how I used to be... I just," my voice broke, "I just don't want to deal with this feeling right now." I cried.

I got up and stood in front of the mirror. In the reflection of the mirror was... me. Pale skinned, bright brown eyes, fluffy hair, pink lips... this was how I always looked like. This was me. I unscrewed the bottle top and tilt the powder down into a line like how I always saw in the movies. There was still some powder left in the bottle but I just dumped it into the toilet and flushed. I needed to do the same with the coke I still had as a keychain but I'll worry about that later.

KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK!

"Lucy?!"

I rubbed my nose, wait didn't I need like a dollar or something? I checked my pockets and found I was in luck! There was a dollar in my back pocket, I started to roll it up.

"Come on Lucy, let's talk about this!"

I will later Natsu, when I feel like talking about it. Until now, I bent down and sniffed.

Before, whenever I got high... I never really felt the coke go in. I mean, it was just... tingles. This time I felt it all. I felt the powder shoot into my nostrils and into my bloodstream, that feeling knocked me back and made me fall flat on my butt. I rubbed my eyes and stood back up and then... it was over. I'm done. Last time, I'll face all my problems head on now like everyone else now.

I bent my head down to wash my face and hands, when I looked back up in the mirror... I wasn't in Erza's bathroom anymore. In the reflection standing right behind me was... all of my mythical creatures. I turned around and saw them all smiling towards me. I took an involuntary step forward and felt something soft squish beneath my feet, grass. There was a clear line showing where Erza's bathroom tiles ended and where the mythical creatures grassy plains started. Just when I was about to take another step towards them, a bright light came flickering in front of me suddenly out of nowhere.

A fairy. A little human with magical wings and... a tail.

"Vanilla," I sighed.

"Can you play with us?" The Fairy asked.

I smiled and opened my mouth to answer.

KNOCK KNOCK KNOCK! "LUCY! OPEN THE DOOR LUCY!"

I paused and looked behind me; the bathroom had vanished and been replaced with blue skies and purple lollipops, but that wooden door was still there. Natsu.

"You can return anytime you want too."

I looked behind me and stared at the fairy. Her tail was waving violently back and forth behind her, a great big smile on her face.

"I can?" I asked.

"Of course."

I didn't look back. I started walking over to my mythical creatures, my friends and laughed.

"LUCY?! LET ME IN! LUCY? LUCY! LUUCY!"