Genre: Shounen ai/ Yaoi, Character death, Gore, Non-con, Tragedy.
Pairings: Gray x Natsu (Or vice versa)
Disclaimer: I do not own fairy tail, or else there will be lotsa Gratsu action.
That smile was only a façade of what he used to be...
Natsu watches in despair as the enemies tortured Lucy's battered body, mutilating her limbs in a grotesque manner, gashes and cuts upon her once tender, velvety back. He struggled against his magic strengthened restrains, chains rattling noisily with the tussle and wrists bruised from the abuse. But his own well-being was the last thing on his mind right now. He could feel the unsettling flames rage within him, and the intense urge to rush to Lucy's side and beat the living crap out of those men. He was ashamed of his own incompetence to protect his precious friend who trusted and depended on him with her life.
He failed her... he failed her... he failed her...
The hollers that escapes his throat were hoarse, desperate and furious, he cursed, he begged, he taunted, but nothing worked. They simply sneered at him saying that it'll be his turn soon. As the muffled sounds of Lucy's sobs gets weaker by each passing second, the distressing feeling accumulating in him increases. His voice was repeating her name like a broken radio, he could smell the coppery scent of her blood and see the endless crimson beginning to pool. Through his clouded vision, he caught a glimpse of Lucy's tears crystallized eyes, half-lidded and melancholic, staring so helplessly into his,
"Hel..p me... Na...tsu"
The inaudible syllabus escapes her mouth before she fell limp and motionless, as if a broken stringed marionette. She no longer responded to the continuous torment or Natsu's desperate chant of her name, neither weeping disconsolately nor screaming from the intense pain, her body laid there lifelessly. Natsu felt his blood ran cold, unwilling to acknowledge the worst, it can't be, Lucy wouldn't die from something so trivial. She might not be strong, but she was always there fighting along side them, she has a persistent life force, she wouldn't die so easily... Natsu reiterated the similar words again and again in his mind, trying to convince himself. Even if it's a lie, he'll let himself be deceived.
But that make-shift sanctuary was easily shattered, he heard the distasteful conversation of his enemies,
"This bitch's dead." One said with a scorn and kicked her one last time, her body tumbled heavily with the impact, once spotless white clothes drenched with her own blood, yet in her hands grasped tightly to her precious keys. In order to save her spirits, she sacrificed her life, and here Natsu was, so foolishly falling into an obvious trap despite her warning.
He was supposed to protect her... but he failed, he failed her, he failed his team mates who so blindly believed that he would keep Lucy safe. If Gray or Erza was here, they'll never let that happen. It was his fault, everything was his to blame, he betrayed them, he failed... he failed... If only he was stronger and more merciless, this would never had happened. Then sadness was quickly replaced by fury, Natsu wanted to wipe the repulsive smirk off their faces.
He could feel fire igniting within him, rampageous, destructive and seething. He wanted to rip out their entrails, gorge out their eyes, snap their tendons, inflicting thousand times more pain than what they did to Lucy. He wanted them to suffer, to agonize and to kneel before Lucy's corpse and apologize. The blood-lust became so unbearable that he felt something within him snapped, nothing else mattered, not the reward, not the guild. It was a pure, concentrated primal instinct to destroy, just like the untameable forest fire, he burned, his mind was fuddled with a single thought, he could sense the tension of the men at his sudden outburst of power.
They were frightened of him, and that fear incites him, the absolute power gaining dominance of his prey, having them squirming in his claws. The scotching heat melted the metal that had held him vulnerable and the chains came off with a gentle tug. In order to kill these men, Natsu would even recreate inferno itself. How he hadn't seen what a twisted grin he had being wearing as he approached the terrified bunch. And he did what he promised, snapping bones like twigs and slaughtering them slowly, sickening and gruesomely. He doesn't stop until he charred their bodies into ashes. How ludicrous for Lucy to be killed by these maggots.
She's dead because he failed her... He wasn't strong enough.
The fire vanquishes and immense sorrow overwhelms him once again. Natsu approaches Lucy's carcass, with a shaking, gentle hand, he cradles Lucy in his arms. Tears clouding his eyes as he sat in the dark room filled with the aftermath stench of battle and death. Apologetic words flooded out of him all at once,
"I'm sorry, Lucy... I'm sorry..." He repeated painstakingly, hoping that she would miraculously regain consciousness. He wants to hear her say his name, to assure that she's all right. Because she's not, she's gone, forever. Natsu could feel the heat fading from her and rigor mortis slowly making it's claim. Death was here to steal Lucy from him, to reduce her into nothingness. He doesn't want that, he wants to hear her hearty laughter, see her flustered face every time he intrude her house, her dazzling smile... He wants her to be alive, well and breathing.
If only he hadn't taken the mission... No, if only Lucy hadn't met him, then she would still be amongst the living, leading an ordinary life and seeking happiness that she deserved. She had being through so much, their adventure still continues, it should, but was instead destroyed by fate's cruel hands. Because he is an idiot, a worthless, incompetent bastard. He wished that it was him lying on the floor instead.
He felt a presence emerge behind him, and a worried voice followed,
"Lucy!" Loke cried frantically, having opened his own gate and squat beside the two.
Natsu dared not face him, he simply tilted his head down, ashamed, infuriated and grievous, he could feel the panic in Loke as he examined Lucy, his face paled. Almost a split second later, Loke punched him forcefully with a magic imbued fist, Natsu was sent crashing into the wall, but he didn't retaliate. He deserved it, he was junk, he deserved to be hurt. Loke's rage didn't end there, he dealt a couple more blows before dragging Natsu up by the hair, forcefully slamming his head against the brick wall.
"Why did you let her die!" He exclaimed, angry and spiteful words accusing him relentlessly, "Why didn't you protect her!"
Before Natsu was a man who loved Lucy, he failed him too, failed everyone. He was nothing but a mere failure. He took the blows and insults quietly until Loke was worn out from the hatred and carried Lucy's body away. Natsu sat in his own mess, head throbbing and joints screaming. Loke probably broke few of his ribs too, and he could feel one of them uncomfortably puncturing his lung. Breathing became difficult as he realize he was wheezing for air. But he just sat there blankly until his conciousness fades.
Once upon a time, there was a boy who smiled brighter then the sun. Unsullied, innocent and so full of energy. A boy who treasured his comrades and fought for his own righteousness and beliefs.
he wakes up in a familiar place, the magnolia hospital a place which he frequent almost too much, he bolts up almost immediately, awakening an over exerted Wendy whom fell asleep beside his bed.
"Lucy!" he yelled, wishing all of it was just a nightmare, that she'll be walking in the door whilst heaving a sigh at his pathetic beaten state. Wanting to hear her tell him what she usually does, 'Natsu, you're overdoing it!' and then he would laugh it off. They would head back to fairy tail together and seek their next mission.
That didn't happen.
No one came through the door.
"Wendy, where's Lucy?" He questioned the yawning sky dragon who was busy rubbing her eyes in a cutesy manner.
There were immediate tears whelming in her reddened eyes, as if a phobia that sent her back into despondency. She weeps quietly and through broken hiccuped sentences, "Lu...Lucy's-san... I couldn't heal her... She wouldn't wake up... Natsu-san... I'm sorry!"
The forceful backlash of reality struck him like a tidal wave, he couldn't escape, fleeting images flashed in his mind, of his failure, his incapability to protect Lucy. He let her die. It was his fault... His fault... His fault. Natsu clutched his head and ripped at his hair in an agonized grunt. Wendy grabbed his arms, trying to stop him from balding himself.
"Natsu-san, stop it!" She cried.
There was a creak that interrupted him, Natsu jolts up, "Lucy!" a muscle memory, his body so voluntarily moved from the sound, Lucy would always visit him, comfort him when he was down, he didn't know when he started associating an opening door with Lucy's presence. But was disappointed to see Gray came through it. There was darkness looming over him, dread, gloom and unsatisfactory, Gray approached him fist clenched white and teeth gritting under pressure. With a swift movement, Gray hit him across the cheeks, strong and fierce. He would curse and brawl with him normally, but this time Natsu just took the blow like a helpless, obedient puppy.
He deserved it... He was trash. He deserved to be hurt.
"Gray-san!" Wendy almost pounced at him just to stop him from hitting Natsu a second time.
Gray retracted his fist fearing to accidentally hurt Wendy in the process. It was needless to beat Natsu, because Gray knew he suffered enough, but deep within him, he was so discontented. If only he were there, he would never allowed Lucy to get hurt. The disquieting irritation within him wouldn't resolve. He did feel a tinge of regret after seeing the lack of response in Natsu, he was probably in much more pain then any of them, Natsu had always treasured his friends, they were like family to him, which he lacked after Igneel left. He looked away remorsefully,
"I'm sorry, Natsu..." He mutters softly before leaving the room.
Natsu didn't deserve to be pitied, he failed them. It was all his fault, he doesn't deserve Gray or Wendy's sympathy. He just wanted to rot away quietly so he doesn't have to betray anyone's trust again. It happened because he was weak, he wasn't strong enough to protect her. His blood seethed at the thought, an entrancing voice coaxing him into revenge, because killing those fools weren't enough. He needed to destroy more, he needed to destroy that entire organization that wronged Lucy, involved or not. They would not get away easily with messing with him.
A small slip made that boy fall into the endless abyss.
Wendy had noticed the malice lurking in his eyes, but she didn't speak of it for she herself was dumbfounded for words, she wasn't like Lucy who knew just what to say to cheer Natsu up, Lucy... whom her magic couldn't revive. What was the use of being a healer if she couldn't even save her precious comrade? She was frustrated with herself, frustrated at her uselessness, if she had tagged along with them, she would rush to Lucy's aid before her final breath was drawn. If only she knew a lost magic for resurrection, but to the extend of her acknowledge, there wasn't a one capable of that.
She heals Natsu's face and left the room.
That night, Natsu returns home alone and drifted into a long, long slumber.
In his dreams, he saw visions of their past adventures, laughing, battling and travelling together. Waves and waves of nostalgia surges through him, he wanted to never wake up, because this time, there was nothing to look forward to in real life. Things will never return to how it used to be no matter how hard he wished for it. Lucy's body was about to be cremated, and he wouldn't be there to witness it, he was still in denial about her departure. He could have swore he heard her voice, her complains about his shenanigans, but just as he was about to reach out to her, she disappears. Does Lucy hate him? She must have, she trusted him to save her, but he let her die tragically. He betrayed her, because he was too weak.
Whenever he thought of that, a voice would resonate in the back of his head, whispering to him softly, to murder, to slaughter the entire enemy guild responsible. There wasn't enough blood to exchange for Lucy's life. Don't make her die in vain, it was persistent, irritating and all so tempting. It wanted him to give in to his instincts, of a dragon, to wrack havoc in his path, because no one is allowed to steal his precious treasures, if they did, they would have to pay dearly. Everyone of them... will have to die horrendously.
He disliked being at home alone, because the solitary was driving him insane, the voices wouldn't stop harassing him. It was his fault... he was to blame, but what he really yearned secretly for in a tiny portion of his heart was someone to tell him, 'No it's not...' It was painful, he doesn't deserve that kind of salvation. He should just suffer like the trash he is, everyone will hate him. And it will be fine, because he was trash...
He was trash...
He doesn't go to the guild the next few days, neither does Happy return home, Happy had been avoiding him, Happy must hate him too...
The guild had being gloomy the past few days, and Natsu hasn't being showing up either. Gray at least expected him to arrive at Lucy's funeral, but was enraged when he didn't. He was about to go to his house and pound his head in, but Erza stopped him with a light shake of her head. Natsu hasn't being the same, and Happy, too frightened to go home, because it hurts to see Natsu in such misery. He was torturing himself, screaming and crying Lucy's name at night, or so he heard from Happy. Gray always knew Lucy had a special place in his heart, it was more then a sister, but wasn't a lover either, she was that special Gem that Natsu treasures and Gray already once felt how it was like to lose someone precious. A second time didn't make it any less painful.
He couldn't get use to this Natsu, and he knew it'll take a massive amount of time for the guild to get use to the loss, just like the time with Lisanna. He would sometimes fantasize that maybe Lucy was sent to Edolas as well, he was sure maybe Natsu thought the same. But the impossible was impossible, he watched Lucy's body getting pushed into the blazing flames, she looked so peaceful, almost as if taking a nap. A eternal nap that is...
It was awkwardly silent in the guild hall, what used to be a noisy place full of cheers is now deathly quiet that even a pin drop could be heard. Erza tried to enliven the mood, suggesting that they should go on a mission together, a simple and relaxing one across the country but was turned down by both Wendy and Gray. They needed time to think, and to move on. A mission right now would be nothing but a mental burden because they would still be reminded of the one important member which was no longer around.
Unable to stand the quiescence, Gray got up from his chair, "I'm going to drag Natsu here." He declared as he left.
No one stopped him.
His legs taking a familiar route towards his destination, his heart is in conflict, maybe that's a bad idea after all, because he might relapse into rage when he sees Natsu again. He knew it wasn't Natsu to blame but he was just so annoyed at the thought of Natsu sitting there helpless as Lucy got tortured to death, he was disgruntled and needed an outlet to unleash his exasperation, that was why he gave into impulse and hit Natsu. He didn't know how he'll react when he saw him again, but Gray wasn't too keen to find out. He doesn't want to add on to Natsu's sufferings any further, if anything, he wanted to bring him to the guild and let everyone give him a good beating and get over it, he deserved it for not protecting Lucy, but not for her death.
He reaches the familiar building which Natsu resides, just as he was about to crash the door open, he heard a voice, Natsu's voice chattering and laughing over a conversation which Gray didn't manage to catch. Strange, was he with someone else? Gray leaned towards the door suspiciously, it wasn't in him to eavesdrop, but if Natsu had being goofing off and having fun whilst everyone was grieving, then Gray will freeze his head in then spear him with an ice lance.
'Lucy! Lets go on a mission together!'
came the voice, clear as crystal and undoubtedly Natsu's, in his usual rowdy, anticipating tone. But there was no response.
'Which one should we do... hmm...' He continues in his solo act.
Gray felt the inside of his gut twist into tiny knots, it was worst then he thought.
'How about this one, Lucy!'
Unable to bear any longer, Gray busted in his room, swinging the door open with a loud bang, what greeted his sight was a half-dazed Natsu, sitting at the corner of the messy living room, huddled into a little ball with his knees pressed tightly to his chest. Still in his reverie, Natsu hadn't noticed Gray's intrusion. It almost hurts him to see Natsu like this.
Gray approaches the crouching figure and with two hands placed on each side of his shoulders, "Snap out of it!" He yelled, shaking him near frantically.
It took awhile for the focus in Natsu's eyes to regain, he blinked then stared at Gray confusedly, "Gray! What are you doing here. Where is Lucy!" He questioned, almost like a child, like he forgotten about everything. He wanted to forget... He wanted to return to those times...
"Wake up, Natsu! You're coming back to the guild with me!" Gray demanded, pulling them into a standing position.
"No, I'm not going without Lucy!" Natsu replied, " Lucy, stop sleeping or we're going to leave you behind!" He hollers towards an empty room.
The knots in his stomach got tighter as it slowly crawls it's way up to his heart, Gray hadn't seen Natsu like this before, so delusional and deranged, what was this unpleasant sensation he was feeling. He couldn't decipher it, it wasn't anger, instead, it was hurt, the same feeling as if Gray was about to lose him. It was stirring in his heart and confusion in his head, he needs to bring Natsu back to reality, but he didn't want Natsu to regress into depression. And he did the one thing he does best, he punched Natsu in the face.
"You bastard! What did you do that for!" Covering the sore spot on his cheek, Natsu reared up a fist of his own, "You picking a fight?" He challenged.
Gray was relieved to get the default, typical reaction out of Natsu, he hadn't know what he'll do if Natsu just stood quietly and took his blow like how he did in the hospital. He couldn't stand the sight of Natsu's self-blaming, it doesn't suit his personality.
"Bring it on, flame-eater!" He reciprocated.
He knows he couldn't alleviate the pain from Natsu, but even for a little while, he wanted to distract Natsu from it. They lunged at each other, just like how they used to, familiar techniques exchanged, threatening to trash Natsu's already chaotic house. This time, there wouldn't be Erza stopping them, Gray could hit Natsu all he wanted, this was their way of communication. He could feel the fleeting sombre within Natsu's movements, but they hadn't slowed him, each time he hit him was as if Natsu was crying out, unleashing the burdens and sufferings which bounded his heart. But Gray doesn't intend to go easy on him either, and they only stopped until both were on the floor, panting, tattered and debating whose win was it. As usual, it ended up in a draw.
"You better now?" Gray finally asked when he caught his breath.
With a little hesitancy, "...Yeah." Natsu finally respond, followed by an almost inaudible, "Thank you..."
The boy panics, seeking for salvation in the everlasting darkness, lost and frightened, then almost as if a dream, he saw a light, he ran desperately towards it... But stops just before he reaches it. He brought up a shivering hand and touched the warmness that radiated through the chill. Does he deserve it?
End of chapter one.
A/n: As much as I want Gray to comfort and cuddle Natsu, I don't think they work like that. So yeah, judging Gray's character, he'll probably punch the shit out of Natsu... So... Yeah, forgive me. Opinions would be appreciated and loved no matter positive or negative. So please do leave a review, it'll be making me prance with joy! I wanted to give this story a slow development, but be warned, this is going to be a tragic story after all. Thought I might change my mind after a few more chapters. Yes, there will be smut, but I will not turn this into a PWP. Trying my best to keep them in character!
Cheers! Thank you for reading! Reviews will be loved and licked.