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Nope Out

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They ended up telling the guild more or less the truth about the Thunder Legion’s bizarre behavior. They were headed out on a rescue mission. Alanza’s magic had supplied knowledge of the person they were rescuing who just happened to be Bickslow’s brother. A bit of basic knowledge regarding Boscan culture didn’t explain away the kisses, but did make them less of a big deal. The whole incident was overshadowed by the arrival of Gajeel and Ryos.

Fifteen year old Ryos was both skittish and wide-eyed, lacking the jaded, emotionless look he had likely developed shortly after joining Sabertooth. Alanza wanted to squeeze him like a plushie, but she was pretty sure he wouldn’t welcome that. His hair was shorter than she had expected. It hung down into his eyes, but didn’t actually cover the right one like it had when he was first seen in the show. His eyes flitted about trying to see everything at once. She wasn’t sure if that was caused by fear or curiosity.

She had panicked for a bit because she hadn't seen Frosch and was terrified that she had royally screwed the little exceed by messing with the timeline. She had literally wilted in releif when the green kitten popped out of Ryos’s travel bag rubbing his big eyes. Apparently he had only recently been found by Ryos and Gajeel hadn’t seen him prior to the previous day. Frosch’s appearance caused the poor teenager to be mobbed by the guild’s females.

Gajeel had laughed at the boy’s terror until he saw Levy cuddling the kitten and cooing sweetly at both exceed and shadow slayer. Alanza watched him seeth silently for a long minute before his gaze grew calculating . He looked from Frosch to Happy, then focused on Alanza herself. The smirk he gave her said her attempt at looking innocent was an epic fail.

The females of the Chess Club, along with Juvia, had been warned that Gajeel and Natsu would be throwing down at some point no matter what they did about it. They did manage to run interference well enough to get Gajeel, Ryos, and Frosch upstairs and properly stamped. Gajeel had remained upstairs for a long minute after the other two came downstairs and when he and Makarov returned they both had grim looks on their faces.

“Listen up brats. Our new member has brought us disturbing news. It seems the Phantom Lord guild plans to cause us a good deal of trouble in the very near future.”


“Why would they do that?"

“Bring it on! I'm all fired up!”

“Yeah, Gramps. We can take em.”

“Settle down! Gajeel, would you please give them a summary of what you told me?”

“Seems some rich guy hired us. Er. Them I guess.” He cringed a bit and glanced at Levy, who smiled. “Says you kidnapped his kid. Ain’t just that though. Jose’s got a serious hard of for Fairy Tail. If he just wanted to take the chick back home that would be one thing, but this is different. He caught me before I could leave town. He thinks I’m here carryin’ out his orders so we’ve got a couple days before he realizes I ain’t comin back and makes his next move.”

“You gunna tell us what he Thinks you’re doing here?” Gray’s sneer said he was still plenty suspicious of Gajeel.

“That’s how I know it’s not just about the girl. I’m a dragon slayer. He wants some chick retreived I could have done that all on my lonesome, no big deal. Instead I’m supposed to be tearing down the guildhall and leaving a message. In Fairy blood.” There were gasps and growls of fury from all corners of the guild.

“Hold on a sec? Who’s this girl you keep mentioning?” Alanza had no clue who the guy was who asked that. Several people, including Gajeel, glanced at Lucy. All of them looked away quickly, respecting her secret. The blond clenched her jaw and stood.

“Me. Jude Heartfilia is my father. At least he was. He knows I wasn't kidnapped. I left home because he was trying to take my magic away and force me to be an old man's brood mare.” There was an outraged cry directed not at Lucy, but at her father.

“Well he can't have you back, Luce! You're a Fairy Tail wizard now. You're staying right here!”

“Damn straight!”

“That’s a man!” Lucy teared up.

“Th-thanks you guys.” There was some cuddling and hugging and girly shit Alanza was glad she was across the room from.

“Gajeel,” Erza stepped closer to the bar with her serious face on. Not that she was ever not serious. “What else can you tell us about this enemy of ours?”

“He's expecting Rain Woman to report at the guild no later than tomorrow at sunset. I gave him some pansy excuse for why she didn't go back with me. Course she ain't gunna be there. Jose's plan is for her and Sol to kidnap Bunny over there and use her as additional bait to goad you guys into a fight, then hold her for ransom. Don't know what his issue is other than he's a rotton dick, but he wants you guys to attack Phantom Lord.” When the guild began calling to do just that the iron slayer raised his voice above the din.

“Don't be stupid! Win, lose, or draw Fairy Tail attacks another guild the Council will disband you or label Fairy Tail a dark guild faster than you can blink. Ya gotta stay on the defensive. He’ll come to us if we can stay put and keep our own safe.”

“Juvia agrees with Gajeel! Master Jose will activate headquarters and bring it to Magnolia! Once he does that Fairy Tail will have proof that they did not start the fight and were only defending themselves.”

“What do you mean activate headquarters?”

“Phantom Lord’s main guildhall transforms into a giant robot and can walk.” There were several heartbeats of silence, then choas erupted. Alanza quietly extracted herself from the cluster of powerful wizards at the bar. Not that Juvia and Gajeel were here and the attack by Phantom Lord was common knowledge they didn’t need her. She did however, have a certain cowardly lion to talk to. She found him tucked in a corner watching Lucy closely.

“How ya holding up, Loke?” He narrowed his eyes at her.

“What do you mean?" She rolled her eyes.

“Don't bullshit with me kitty. I know you're having magic stability type problems. Does it get worse when you actively use magic or does it just happen?” He was silent long enough she thought he was going to be difficult.

“Using magic doesn’t speed it up or anything. It just makes it more noticable.”

“Hmm. Like not noticing a flickering lightbulb unless you flip the light on?” He snorted.

“Yeah, I g-” He glared at her again. "Lightbulb? How do you know about lightbulbs?”

She blinked. Then she looked towards the source of light in the guildhall. She was surprised to see that it was not, in fact, a lightbulb. It was a glowing round...thing. A lacrima she guessed. So...there weren't lightbulbs in Earthland. When she realized this the oddest thing happened. A lightbulb popped into existence right over her head, complete withe lightbulb moment sound effects. She might have screamed. Just a little. She and her lightbulb got some really weird looks.

“Fuck.” She glared at Loke. “I'm blaming you for this. And how do You know about lightbulbs?”

“Uhh...” She recognized that look from the anime. He was about to run, so she reached out and grabbed the arm of his jacket. She then leaned close to whisper at him.

“The celestial realm can see into multiple universes can't it?”

“Uhh...” Now he just looked lost. She rolled her eyes again.

“Wow. You’re crazy smooth today. Just... Keep an eye on Lucy’s keys for the next few days, ok? Keep her safe. Trust me, Leo. It’ll be worth it.” She waved at him over her shoulder and headed outside.

She glanced back at the guildhall as she walked and stopped. The guildhall looked odd for some reason. She studied it closely for a long moment before she figured out the issue. The lightbulb popped up again and she shot a glare at it. The reason it looked odd was that Gajeel was here and the guildhall hadn't been updated. If it didn’t get destroyed did that mean they wouldn’t get a swimmingpool? Oh well. She would deal with that later.

She started walking again, looking for a park and a nice tree to stand under and run through the fighting forms Laxus and Juvia had taught her. She thought Fairy Tail had a training area somewhere, but she hadn’t actually heard anyone mention it, nor had she seen it. If they didn’t then she needed to find a good place to train and meditate other than her apartment. She honestly hated being inside. She needed outside space.

She found a park after a few minutes of wandering and a nice big tree. It actually looked a but like the one Gajeel had hung Shadowgear from which considering the timng made her more than a bit nervous. She shook it off though. Gajeel was a Fairy now so that would never happen. She planted her feet like Juvia taught her and closed her eyes. Breathing deeply and steadily she moved slowly through her forms.

“What are you doing?” She opened her eyes to find herself being watched by curious red ones. Frosch was nowhere to be seen.

“Chai tea I think. Tai chi? Something like that. Basically I’m pretending to beat someone up in slow motion. Laxus says it’s for muscle memory. It seems to work for meditation too.”

“I haven't met Laxus have I?” She started moving again while she spoke.

“Nope. He and his team rushed off on a rescue mission this morning. Gajeel must have told you a bit about him though.” Ryos blushed. She grinned. “I'm betting it wasn't anything nice. They didn't really jive very well.” He laughed a bit.

“Can I do your tea stuff with you?”

“Sure!” She returned to her starting position so he could copy her. “What are you doing out here?”

“The guild is... Loud. I’m not really used to being around people so much. They are really nice, just... To nice.” She chuckled.

“I get that. It’s kinda why I left once their war council got going. Where’s Frosch?”

“With Ga- er... Levy.” She really hoped he had been about to say ‘Gajeel’s mate’ because, hello, Gajevy. “I almost didn’t leave him behind, but... Gajeel says I can trust her. Juvia is there too, and she is a nice person.”

“She really is. She is my sister. Not my real sister. I chose her and she chose me.”

“Like kin?”

“Yep.” The slayers understood that idea instinctively. “To be honest when I first told her I wanted to be her sister I was using the term in a broader way, but she took me totally literally and I found I liked it that way. I have- had real half siblings where I come from, but... They were never real sisters or brothers to me. I feel like Juvia is. I haven't actually known her long, but I’m looking forward to getting to know her better.” The real Juvia, not the Gray obsessive Juvia. “So do you think you will be happy here? With Fairy Tail?”


“Yeah, silly. Happy.”

“I’m... not sure.”

“Well, we have other members your age you know.”

“Really?” His red eyes lit up at the idea.

“Really. Wendy is about twelve, and a dragon slayer like you. She is out on a mission with her big brother right now. Then there are a few people we are planning on fiding and bringing to the guild. Some of them I’m sure you will be great friends with. Frosch too.”

“The girls at the guild seem to really like him. He likes all the hugs and cuddles.” The faint blush on his cheeks said he did too. He was just to much of a teenage boy to admit it.

“Nothin wrong with soaking up affection kid. Lack of hugs makes a person grouchy. Just look at Gajeel.” Ryos barked out a laugh, then choked on it and ended up on the ground coughing and laughing.

“G- Gajeel doesn’t- Shoot lady. You’re nuts if you think he’s gunna let anybody hug him.” She stopped moving and grinned widely.

“Oh, yeah? How much you wanna bet?” He stared at her wide eyed.

“Impossible. He’ll kill anybody that tries. Seriously!”

“We are Fairy Tail. We do impossible things all the time. Just wait and see.” Ryos shook his head at her. “My name is Alanza by the way. Gajeel probably told you a bit about me.”

“He says you know things... Things nobody should know.”

“I do. I know all sorts of things. Like if you ever start hearing voices or your shadows start acting weird you need to tell us. Think about the people who you love and remember that we love you back.” His eyes widened.

“You... You care... About me?” She crouched down and placed a hand on his head.

“Sure Ryos. I care. Fairy Tail is a family. We have smaller families inside the guild, like me and Juvia are sisters, but the whole guild is a big family. We always take care of our nakama.” He grinned and threw himself against her in a hug. She almost toppled over.

“Thanks, Alanza.” She smiled and hugged him back.

“Any time kid.”