|More from Bomochu||Adventure/Comedy||PG-13||None|
|The Fairy Tail Guild|
20 March, 2015
A young brunette woman slouched on the wooden bench beside the table, glass of wine in her hands as she sloshed the contents around unintentionally.
"Cana, you've already drunk several bottles already. Perhaps it's time to give it a rest?" A man with greyish dark blue hair and with the same coloured moustache remarked as he looked over in her direction.
The alcoholic let out a huge yawn and an irritated moan, "I've told you Macao, it's only the afternoon. I... I have plenty of time to keep drinking!" She raised her glass before downing the rest in half a gulp.
Macao shook his head, wandering back to the bar, "She just never learns..." He mumbled to himself, though wouldn't admit that he wasn't so different after all.
A creak of the main door signalled the wizards' return. First Natsu walked in, his usual boyish grin replaced with a serious gaze that seemed so unlike him. Wendy, Carla, and Happy then followed him in, also with solemn expressions. The guild hall was quite a large building, and this first room many metres wide. Several wooden beams held the higher levels and roof above, and many tables lined the floor around them.
"Hey, Wendy and the others are back," A black-haired wizard named Gray remarked while seated on a bar stool. While walking past Cana's table, the young man failed to realise that his shirt had somehow disappeared.
"Gray, put some clothes on," The girl with the glass of wine muttered in his direction.
To his surprise, Gray noticed his shirt was in fact missing. Alas, the poor Ice-Maker wizard had a terrible habit of mysteriously taking off his clothes without remembering doing so.
Another figure also walked over to meet Natsu, a red-haired woman dressed in silvery armour and a blue skirt. "Natsu, it's good to see you. Where...Where is Lucy?" She noticed the two Exceeds and Sky Dragon Slayer with him, but could not see the Celestial Wizard anywhere.
"Erza, she..." Wendy stammered, "She's behind us, though she doesn't want anyone to panic when she enters."
"Panic?" Erza raised a brow. "Why would we panic?"
At that moment, Lucy did in fact appear in the doorway, though she wasn't alone. Next to her appeared some sort of Noh mask, but it was attached to the head of a giant centipede looking creature with menacing legs dangling in front.
As soon as Koh had entered the guild hall, wizards left right and centre panicked. Lucy held out her arms to address them all, "It's okay! Koh is a spirit I have a contract with!"
Slowly, the frightened guild members settled down, and took to forming a small half circle around Lucy and the other wizards who had returned. Even Erza and Gray had looked a little shaken by the presence of Lucy's new spirit she had a contract with, though they soon relaxed. "So... Is that a new Celestial Spirit Lucy? Man, I thought Yukino's Ophiuchus was scary enough!" Gray remarked.
"And I believe there is a reason you haven't closed his gate yet, Lucy?" the red-haired knight asked.
Lucy shifted uncomfortably for a moment. It was clear something was wrong. Though she soon looked up and answered their questions, "Koh is a spirit, but not a Celestial Spirit. He... He is from another Spirit World in fact," She then glanced at Erza, "And the reason he hasn't been sent back is because I can't seem to close his gate."
A few gasps surfaced from the crowd. "But... Does that mean he'll die if he stays any longer? Like what nearly happened with Loki?" Gray asked anxiously.
"Your eyes are so... Beautiful, and full of concern," Koh had finally spoken, causing many to cower at his deep voice. He crawled his way over to the shirtless wizard, examining every feature of his face. "If only I could have a face like yours. If only I could... Have your face." A wicked grin flashed on the Noh mask's face as he inched closer to Gray.
While the spirit conversed with Gray, a wizard glared from behind one of the support pillars. The blue-haired Rain Woman could only watch as her blood boiled, "How... How dare that spirit complement my love! He is my love rival!" Juvia screamed to herself in a hot whisper.
The Ice-Maker Wizard Gray stayed fairly still as the centipede neared him. "Uh... Thanks? But, it's not like you can actually take my face or anything..." Gray reassured himself.
"Actually he can take faces. Though I doubt he really wants your ugly one Gray." Natsu folded his arms while insulting Gray.
The Ice-Maker Wizard seemed to ignore the fact that Koh was circling him, focusing only on his rival, "Oh yeah? Well I doubt he would want yours you pink-haired twat!" He shot back.
"That's enough! All of you!" As usual, Erza had to break up the fight. A sword materialized out of a bright red light, landing in the wizard's hands. "Natsu and Gray! This is no time to fight! Lucy hasn't even finished telling us all the details of what has happened yet."
The Fire Dragon Slayer and Ice-Maker Wizard both shut their mouths, not nearly daring enough to challenge Erza. But she wasn't finished yet, and aimed her weapon in the Face Stealer's direction, "And you, Koh. I warn you. If you even threaten to steal any Fairy Tail member's face then I will slice each of your legs in two so when you even try to walk you will tie yourself in knots. Do you understand?"
Koh grunted in reply, slithering around behind Lucy. "How many deals must I make with you human illusions? I already made one with Lucy."
"Human illusions?" Erza looked back at Lucy.
The Celestial Wizard sighed, "Koh seems to think that we are all illusions, and some friend of his – or enemy, haven't quite figured it out yet – has him under some kind of illusion spell in his own world. That's why we were trying to close his gate; so I could prove that we aren't illusions but are able to use magic to summon him and send him back. There is also the reason Gray brought up, that spirits can't survive for long in our world, so we have to think about that too. But I can't seem to close his gate."
Erza nodded, though Gray was the next to speak, "But when you all came in before you all looked so upset. Did the rest of the job not go so well?"
"The job went perfectly," Lucy answered, "And we went to visit the client afterwards to collect our reward. He paid me and Wendy generously with many Jewels, and then gave us Koh's Gate Key since he knew I was a Celestial Wizard and thought I would appreciate it. We met up with Natsu to summon him, since we worked out that his name was 'Koh the Face Stealer' and thought we'd have him there in case things went wrong. We eventually worked out how to open his gate, though I couldn't seem to close it afterwards. That's when..." Lucy couldn't finish her sentence. Tears clouded her vision, tears which she shed after thinking about all that had happened after they went to find their client. The dead body. The blood. And now, this letter.
"Mr Hammelworth is dead," Natsu blurted out, and all around the room fell a deathly silence, apart from the gasps and horrified sounds which many let out after the Fire Dragon Slayer's words. "We went to his home to ask him how to close Koh's gate, though when we got there he was dead. Murdered by a knife to his chest. But whoever did this left a note behind addressed to Lucy, though we're gonna catch him. We're gonna make him pay for taking another person's life! Even if we have to travel to Koh's world to do so!" Natsu had now ignited his clenched fist with brilliant orange flames, his eyes burning with determination.
A slap on his head put out Natsu's flames and caused him to cry out. "Ow, what was that for Erza?!" He complained angrily.
A stern scowl buried itself in Natsu's vision, "Have you learned nothing from your previous misadventures?" Erza's voice was angry, but serious. "You almost ended up in worlds of trouble after the Galuna Island incident. And yet you would simply throw yourself into another similar situation? Carelessly travel to a world you've never been to before?"
"Erza, I know it's crazy but I think Natsu has a point," Lucy calmed herself to continue explaining. "The letter mentions me by name, and whoever wrote it wants me to meet them in Ba Sing Se."
"That's not a village I've ever heard of," Gray commented.
"That's because it's not in our world, but Koh's. I... I don't know who this writer is or why he would simply kill someone, but you have to admit that it is all too coincidental. This writer knows who I am, wants me to visit them in Koh's world, and I end up with a key which I know little about that summons a spirit from that world. I need to find answers." The young wizard let her eyes trail down to the wooden floor boards, "But it's about more than that now. This guy, he... He murdered another human being. We have to bring him to justice. I just... I don't know how to close Koh's gate, nor get myself over to his world."
Erza placed a hand around her chin, deep in thought. "I can see your conviction, though please understand how dangerous this sounds to everyone else. I don't know what Master Makarov will think of this."
"I think you're all a bunch of loonies! Ya brats!"
All heads turned to see the short form of Master Makarov. He was one of the shortest wizards anyone would ever lay their eyes on, certainly below the waist of someone of average height. He wore a white cloak with the Wizard Saint's symbol sown into the back, with blue pants that matched the symbol and black boots. His hair was almost white, though still a light grey in places and disappearing around the middle of his head, the front already lost with age. Accompanying the master was Mirajane, a white haired wizard and employee of Fairy Tail. Her maroon dress swayed as she walked down the stairs, her bright blue eyes filled with concern.
"We were just going through the guild's books when we heard most of this going on down here. Lucy, it sounds like you've gone through quite an ordeal. How are you holding up?" Mirajane gingerly placed her hand on the Celestial Wizard's shoulder. It was sometimes hard to believe that such a sweet and caring person could use such a terrifying magic like Satan Soul.
Lucy smiled in reply, "I'm still a little shocked by all that has happened, but I'll be fine. Thanks."
Natsu walked forwards to address the guild's master, "Gramps, I know what you're thinking. But we have to do this! We've survived in Edolas right? That was an alternate world. Lucy might be in danger from this guy, so we need to figure out who he is and what he wants."
"Hmmmm," Makarov thought to himself, pondering all that had been said. "And what does this letter say, exactly?" Lucy pulled out the letter and handed it to Master Makarov, who read it aloud, "Dear Lady Lucy Heartfillia. I know you seek answers as to what has happened here, and why you are involved in this. And I will be happy to inform you of everything, though it must be on my turf. Meet me in the city of Ba Sing Se whenever you can. You won't need to find me in the vast city. I'll know when you have arrived."
"Sounds rather ominous. Like a trap." Erza suggested.
"My thoughts exactly," Makarov agreed. He turned back to Lucy and the others, "So you just decided to take this note? You should have left it at the crime scene so when investigators arrive they can deduce what had happened more accurately."
Natsu clenched his teeth, "The letter was addressed to Lucy so she should be the one to read it! And we should be flying into Koh's world so we can catch the guy who did this!"
"We did tell the Rune Knights about what we had found," Wendy answered this time. "They said they would be at the crime scene in another hour."
Makarov nodded, "That was good thinking, but still, now that we've read this note it should be given back to the Rune Knights and placed in the area where it was first found."
A ginger-haired man made his way over to the conversation, "I can take it there. Though I won't know where it was first found." Jet offered. He was ideal for the task since his Speed Magic allowed him to move incredibly fast.
"It was on the floor to the left of his body," Natsu answered after a lengthy pause. He too, was still shaken from all that they had seen. After a quick nod, Jet grabbed the note as Makarov handed it to him and sped out the front doors.
"So, now that the note has been taken care of, I have some questions for that spirit of yours Lucy," the master glanced over to the centipede creature lurking in the corner behind Lucy.
Lucy looked from Koh back to Makarov, "Master he... He believes that we are all just illusions sir. I don't think he'll be answering many of our questions."
"And why would he believe us to be 'illusions'?"
"Well...," Lucy paused to choose her words carefully, "It started when we began talking about magic. In Koh's world, there is no magic, so when we told him how I brought him here using the Gate Key and my own magic he must have assumed he was dreaming or something."
Makarov took a moment to ponder what Lucy had said. He knew that if he were to allow Lucy to travel to this other Spirit World, and that was a big if, then he needed to know more about this world that Koh was from to even consider it. "Nevertheless, I still need to know more about this world," The master turned back to the Face Stealer, "Koh, I need to know what it going on here. Are you actually the one trying to send Lucy to your world? Or is there anyone else who would want to bring magic into your world?"
Erza's eyes narrowed as she too glanced at Koh, "My thoughts exactly master. This spirit could be the one behind everything." Her fingers gripped the handle of her sword a little tighter.
Although she hadn't known him for long, Lucy did feel a little defensive that people would accuse her spirit of being the one behind all that was going on. Still, it was a valid point, and she had to let Master Makarov investigate all possibilities as to what was really going on. At first Koh said nothing, though a mild laugh left his lips as he crawled out from the corner and nearer to the one questioning him. "Fine. I will answer your questions, old man. I am not the one behind this illusion or trying to send Lucy to my own world. I do have an idea of what is going on; that you are all simply illusions of an enemy of mine. As for your last question, I believe it would be a possibility for someone to want to bring magic into my world, not that such a power exists anyway. A war has recently ended; the Hundred Year War, led by the Fire Nation against the rest of the world. Though there have been disagreements as to whether the colonies established by the Fire Nation should be forced back to their once homeland, and tensions have been high for quite some time. Perhaps someone on one side of the disagreement or the other wants to gain the upper hand with this power, though I can't say for sure." The Noh mask smirked, "Though as I said, this is nothing more than an illusion."
"Hmm... So there's no magic in your world? It's almost like Edolas." Makarov pondered the answers he was given.
"But there's always Mystogan's X-Ball pills which can allow us to use magic in other worlds!" Happy suggested with a hopeful smile. "If we send some of us over there we'll still be able to use magic." Indeed, the blue Exceed was right; when they had all traveled to Edolas, a world without magic, Mystogan had given them those exact pills to allow them to use magic over there. How they worked exactly was still a mystery, though they had been kept along with the former Fairy Tail wizard's other items he parted with when he stayed in Edolas.
"Alright Happy, you go grab them then!" Natsu requested.
"We cannot jump the gun; we don't even know if it is possible to get over to Koh's world, nor if I will even let you go." Makarov sighed, "Though I suppose you have proven yourselves capable wizards, so I should at least consider it, so long as the travel there and back is safe."
Erza grunted before turning to their guild master, "But Master, it could be a trap."
"Oh, I have no doubt that it is," The old man smirked, "Though I also know that they will pull through. Lucy will not be going alone after all."
"I see. You'll be sending us, her whole team, over to this world where Koh is from?"
"If it is feasible," Makarov glanced back at the Celestial Wizard. "But now we have to work out a possible and safe way to send you over."
Wendy took a step forward, "What about a Reverse-Anima spell? Like what was used to flush all of Edolas's magic out into our world?"
"I don't think that would work unfortunately," A small black cat appeared from the crowd. Pantherlily was the other of the three Exceed who were Fairy Tail wizards. "I was with Mystogan when he cast the spell; the Reverse-Anima and normal Anima spells required an entire building to do so. I don't think even we would have enough magic energy to pull that one off." Lily knew all too well the ways of his old homeland, and how the Anima spell was cast all those times over the years to drain this world of its magic.
"If it's a question of magic power than I don't think it will be a problem," Master Makarov stated. "We are not trying to pull off something as large-scale as the Anima spell used in Edolas, plus we have many powerful wizards here and could probably send a handful over with just our power. But, you do have a point about the chamber being used to cast the spell, which we don't have, so I suppose that leads me to another suggestion." The old man closed his eyes before turning back to Lucy, "I am a little rusty on my knowledge of Celestial Spirit Magic, Lucy, so you'll have to help me out. When you open a gate for a Celestial Spirit to come through, you are only opening a gate for the spirit itself, is that correct?"
Lucy pondered the guild master's question for a moment, "Well, yes. If I open the Gate of the Goat, Capricorn is summoned. Only him." The Celestial Wizard shook her head, "But I know what you're implying, and I have to say that it isn't something I would recommend. If we were to hijack me closing Koh's gate, and in doing so sending not only one spirit there but seven other wizards then I can't imagine it will be without difficulty. And plus humans may not even be allowed in Koh's world, like they aren't in the Celestial Spirit World."
"But Lucy! I've been through the Celestial Spirit World before!" Natsu corrected. "Remember when we were fighting Duke Everlue? When he summoned Virgo I was taken through the gate as well since I tried to attack her as she was getting up. If I can do it, then surely all of us can."
A moment of silence passed, everyone still processing what had been said. Again, Master Makarov placed a hand over his chin, though addressed Lucy after another few seconds of silence, "Lucy, as I said my knowledge of Celestial Spirit Magic is limited, so I will leave the decision up to you. If you think that we can combine all of our magic power here to open a gate powerful enough to not only send Koh back but you and your team as well, and that we can do this safely, then we will go ahead. But if you are unsure, than we must find another way to do it."
The Celestial Wizard stuttered a little, a hand placed near her lips. She played through all the options, thinking through the consequences of each one. This was a possibility to get them to Koh's world, even if she wasn't sure if humans were allowed to be there. But Lucy also knew she needed to catch whoever this was. This murderer had to be brought to justice. But still, they needed a way back once they had found the killer and so far they didn't have one.
"I want to, I do, but..." Lucy looked back to the others waiting for her response, "But we need to know if there is a way back for us once we are in Koh's world. If we close his gate while travelling with him, we will hopefully all end up in his world. But, if I open his gate while over there, it won't take me back to Earthland, since I'll be casting the spell from his world."
"Oh come on Lucy!" Natsu interrupted, "We went into Edolas without a way back being confirmed! If this is the only way than we have to give it a shot, we'll figure something else out later to get back home." His hazel eyes gazed into Lucy's, trying to convince her he was right.
Another wizard stepped forward, one who hadn't spoken yet. "I think I may have an idea on that one," Levy suggested. She brushed her blue hair back as she thought up a response, "If this criminal is from Koh's world, than that means he needed a way to get here to Earthland, right? If we can work with the Rune knights and tell them all we know, they might let us join them for this case and we can figure out how this mysterious person crossed over together. Perhaps you could use the same method to return to Earthland as he did."
Makarov looked towards Levy, "Jet is already heading to the crime scene. Can I count on Team Shadow Gear to do this?"
Levy nodded her head, "Or course! Me and Droy will leave right away." She motioned to a rather large wizard with a chicken drumstick in his hands, happily munching on it throughout the whole conversation. On their way out, Levy stopped near Lucy and rested a hand on her shoulder, "Don't worry Lucy. We'll find a way to bring you guys home safely. I promise." Her genuine smile was full of confidence and love towards her friend.
"Thanks Levy," Lucy watched the pair of wizards run out the main doors, Droy trying his best to keep up.
"The rest of us can search the magic libraries while you're gone," Mirajane suggested. "Though we will need to help close Koh's gate as well and send you guys there first."
Makarov nodded, "That is of course if Lucy will give this plan the green light. I leave it in your hands Lucy." His blue orbs met with her brown ones, "I know we have yet to figure out some of the details of this plan, but do you think this is a risk that you feel is worth taking a chance on? You know more about Celestial Spirit Magic than any of us, and so I leave it up to you whether this option is a go or not."
All pairs of eyes fell on the Celestial Wizard. She glanced over each of her friends near her; Natsu, Wendy, Gray, Erza, Happy, and Carla. These six other wizards would be travelling with her into Koh's world, a world completely foreign to them, and they didn't even have a confirmed way of making it back. Lucy shook her head. She couldn't let her friends take this needless chance on something which could be nothing more than a trap. "I don't..." As soon as Lucy opened her mouth however, she stopped. Images flashed in her mind, images of what she had seen earlier today. Mr Hammelworth was a kind man, and he only wanted to get his business back up and running after it had been stolen by Duke Savelle and turned into a mass-production line of trashy clothing. He had wanted to make a living, but he had also frequently donated his left-overs to those who needed it, or at least that's what Lucy had read about him recently. Though he would never have the chance to help anyone ever again. He was dead, murdered just so this killer would get her attention. Lucy clenched her fist, her eyes formed into a scowl. When she thought of this decision in the light of all that had happened, she knew that there was only one option. They had to find justice for what had happened, and answers for why this killer wanted her so badly. "Let's do it."
"Alright! Let's do this!" Natsu placed a fiery fist into his other opened hand.
"Aye aye sir!" Happy chirped from behind.
The old master nodded his head slowly, making his way from the bottom of the staircase to the space directly in front of Lucy. "Alright then. Everyone form a circle around Lucy and her team. That includes you, Koh."
The centipede finally crawled out from the corner of the room, an arrogant laugh forming from his mouth, "I knew your illusion powers would wear out eventually, Irutzi. Now I will come for your face as well."
"Was he... Like this the whole time?" Erza asked the blue-haired wizard standing next to her.
Wendy rolled her eyes, "You have no idea..."
After another few moments, Lucy, Koh, and her team were surrounded by a circle of their comrades. The other Fairy Tail wizards looked towards their friends in the middle of the circle, wishing them the best with their facial expressions. The area around Makarov began to glow with golden light, trails of energy which rose from the ground into the air around him. Next Mirajane did the same, though her aura was a deep pinkish-purple in colour. All the other wizards joined in, some of them holding hands in the circle. Cana needed a little help standing up, but she too managed to lend her magic energy with Mirajane helping her stand.
"We wish you all the best young ones. Watch each other's backs, and make sure to keep yourselves focused on the task at hand." Makarov smiled at each of the members before them as if he were their father. It was hard for him to be sending them to some strange land, though they had pulled through before and he had faith they would succeed.
As Laxus and the three members of the Thunder Legion also lent their magic power, the whole guild hall began to vibrate. Lucy glanced at all the wizards around her, noting that each one was lending their power to help her close Koh's gate and send them into his world. The blonde-haired wizard took another look at each of her friends around her, then quickly nodded before taking out the black key from her pocket. The energy pulsing in the room made it harder to hold the key outward from her body, but as she did, Lucy began to cast the spell, "Close! Gate of the Face Stealer!"
Koh began to laugh as his form began to dissolve into tiny specks of gold. Lucy turned around only to notice that he wasn't the only one; Wendy, Carla, Happy, Natsu, Erza, And Gray all began to as well. She also took a look at her own hands, which were also being transported into Koh's world. But as soon as she realised that the spell was working, Lucy too saw that her body was beginning to take form again. A worried frown formed on her face as she looked back to the others who were also materializing again. Even Koh's centipede body had also reformed. As quickly as the spell had been cast, the golden specks soon disappeared.
No one spoke for a few seconds afterwards, though Lucy glanced at the key in her hands, trying to make sense of it all. "What... That should have worked." Lucy stammered.
Puzzled faces were spread across the room. The very foundations of their building had been vibrating moments before from the magic energy in the room, and yet with that much power they still couldn't close Koh's gate and send the other wizards to his world. "Might I add a suggestion?" The small black cat in the room made his way over to Master Makarov. "If Celestial Spirit Magic can be compared to the Anima spell, than I think I know why it didn't work. While I was in Edolas, I supervised a few times while the Anima spell had been cast. The more magic energy we were trying to harvest from Earthland, the more magic energy was needed to cast the Anima spell. Though of course the cost was always much lower than the benefit, as they wouldn't have even tried to cast the Anima spell if it wasn't gaining magic energy for us in Edolas."
"So what you're saying is that we need more wizards here? Even with all of the powerful people right in this room?" Gray questioned.
"No, I'm actually saying something quite different," Pantherlily corrected, his tail swinging for a moment. "There were times that even the Anima spell had limits; sometimes when the spell was cast to suck up a vast amount of magic energy the spell wouldn't work. Even when the cost of our energy we put in was far greater than the reward, the spell still had limits. Perhaps then, this spell to close Koh's gate is only meant to transfer a certain number of wizards."
Erza closed her eyes, pondering the situation. "We almost got the spell to work; our bodies were immersed in light, turning into celestial energy like what Lucy's spirits do when their gates are closed. Perhaps it will only take two more of us to stay behind to allow the spell to work." The red-haired Knight glanced to her left, "Gray, me and you should stay behind."
The Ice-Wizard was surprised by Erza's decision, "What? We can't just leave Lucy and the others to fend for themselves! What if we just tried a little harder--?"
"Natsu, Happy, Wendy, and Carla all came to find us when we had been taken to Edolas. They've had experience that you and I don't have." The red-haired knight offered a small but sad smile after she finished. It was clear that she didn't want to stay behind, but somehow she knew they were meant to.
Gray slowly nodded his head, "I suppose you're right. Though we nearly had the spell working, so do you think that we'll need both of us to leave?"
"If that's the case, then I'll go instead." All heads turned to see a young wizard wearing a light-blue striped shirt, green shorts, and sneakers step forwards. She had white hair like her older siblings, short enough that the longest strands hung around the top of her neck.
Her older brother turned around, "Lisanna? You can't be serious!" Elfman wore a worried look on his face, towering above all the other wizards with his height.
Mirajane also made her way over to her sister, "We only just got you back from Edolas a while ago, are you sure that you want to do this?"
The young wizard nodded her head. "I have less magic energy than Erza and Gray put together. The spell might just work with me replacing both of them. Plus I've had experience surviving in other worlds; I did live in Edolas for two years." Although it had caused her so much heartache living a lie in Edolas, Lisanna couldn't deny that doing so had taught her a lot. Perhaps she could now offer herself to this mission, given what she had gone through in the past.
"But that was different; there were alternate versions of all of us who recognised you. They thought you were Edola's Lisanna, and so you were able to blend in easier." Gray tried to object.
"I know, what I went through is different, though you still learn things when you are forced to pretend to be someone you're not. I know Koh's world is vastly different from our own, but I can help. I've done it before." Lisanna smile fondly will closing her eyes, "It will be just like old times, right Natsu?"
The Fire Dragon Slayer smirked a little. He would never forget the adventures that Lisanna, Happy, and him used to go on when they were younger. "She has a point."
Master Makarov nodded, "I suppose it's worth a shot. And if it still doesn't work we can always just sit you out as well Lisanna."
"Right," Mirajane reassured herself. She ran her fingers through her younger sister's hair and then down her cheek. For two years, Mirajane and Elfman had grieved for their deceased little sister, but when she had shown up out of the blue alive and well it had felt like the piece of her heart that was missing had been restored. It was hard to let Lisanna out of her sight after all that had happened, but Mirajane knew her sister could help the others on their quest. She swallowed in an effort to fight back tears, smiling fondly at Lisanna. "Just promise us that you'll return home again. I don't want to lose you again to another world."
"I promise." The Strauss siblings all embraced each other in a group hug before Lisanna made her way over to Lucy and the other wizards leaving.
"Gray, over here," Erza directed the Ice-Maker wizard and herself to the outside circle.
Gray took his time walking over to the others, but turned back to face the departing wizards as he did, "Just make sure you catch this guy, alright?"
"Of course," Lucy smiled lightly. It would be hard being away from her usual teammates, though Lisanna was a talented wizard in her own right and would surely be a great asset to the team. Once again, she pulled out Koh's gate key and held it ahead of herself. Though before she began to cast the spell, she sent a sideways glance towards their new companion, "Thank you Lisanna. You didn't have to step in and do this."
A warm smile formed on her face, "Of course I did Lucy. I can help you guys. I've done something similar before and I can't just sit back and watch when I know I can help."
The Celestial Wizard nodded her head, turning back to face Master Makarov, and also Erza and Gray who now stood directly ahead of them in the circle. All of the wizards once again lent Lucy their power, the powerful vibrations slowly building up again and shaking the whole room. The blonde-haired wizard furrowed her brows, griping the strange black key tighter in her hands. "Close! Gate of the Face Stealer!"
This time their bodies turning into golden light happened much quicker than before. Lucy watched as her whole arm glowed with a celestial power, specks of the light also appearing in the very air around them. Her whole vision started to go a little blurry; she quickly glanced to her sides, but even the people next to her were disappearing from sight. This was it. This spell was actually working. Soon they would all be in the strange world that Koh was from, a world without magic. Lucy turned behind her to see Happy's form almost gone now, the blue cat almost completely turned into light. Though she still managed to see him holding Mystogan's X-Ball Pills which would allow them to use magic in Koh's world. As long as she had her Celestial Spirits and her fellow guild members, Lucy knew they would succeed.
A sudden whirling sound, almost like great and stormy gusts filled their ears. Nerves began to take a hold of the Celestial Wizard's heart as she tried to reach out to Natsu standing next to her. He too did the same, though before they could touch each other the whole air around them went black. And as if entering a strange dream of some kind or deep sleep, Lucy felt her mind slowly blacking out.
A soft grunt left his lips as his eyes started to flutter open. The white Noh mask revealed its dead blue eyes, taking note of the roots and swampy floor beneath his form. Koh wriggled all his legs slowly, and began to stand up. His memory was hazy, and he switched faces a couple times as if to focus on what had just happened.
A vicious grin surfaced on the old man face he now wore. "Irutzi," He laughed with a raspy voice, "I have broken your illusion. All this talk of magic and contracts was for nothing. Now I will have your face!" The centipede screamed in a random direction, though not knowing where his enemy was. Koh could recognise the familiar surroundings; his tree was not too far from here, the swamps and shallow pools of murky water where he stood were well-worn grounds he had travelled across in search of new faces to add to his collection.
The Face Stealer spun around in a second at the mention of his name. Though to his horror, the voice belonged to a young girl he had seen before. The one with snow-white hair, and bright blue eyes. The one who wore a light-blue shirt with thin black stripes, a pair of green shorts which ended mid-thigh, and a pair of shoes which were not from his world. This girl was one from the illusion he had just been stuck in.
"Where are the others? I can't seem to find them anywhere?" The young girl's eyes were so filled with anxiety.
The Face Stealer said nothing. He had to still be in an illusion, this couldn't be real! With lightning speed he leapt over to the young girl and grasped her face with his front legs, the sharp appendages gripping her soft white skin. The girl wriggled about, screaming at the top of her lungs and bashing against his claws with her fists. Though he had to check this. His powers didn't work in the illusion previously, so he had to know if they did now.
The tears and howls were all the emotions Koh needed to see in order to steal a face. His eyes narrowed as he felt his power surging up. Indeed, as his legs gripped the young girl's face he did feel an affinity towards it, and a soft eerie blue light began to form around it as he nearly had her face free from her body. "Im... Imp... Impossible!" Koh stammered as his powers slowly ceased.
The Face Stealer was about to let the young girl go when a foot slammed into his face. The centipede screeched as his legs shifted backwards, his front ones covering his precious collection from any further damage. Lisanna jumped back after her attack, landing on her feet and wiping her tears on her sleeves. "If it's a fight you want, Face Stealer, than I can give you one!" She challenged.
Koh was still in shock from both the attack and from the realisation that this was actually happening. That whole world with 'magic' was actually real. And if it was real, and everything and everyone that he had seen and encountered was real, than Koh knew that he had made a terrible, grave mistake. He had made a contract with one of them.
- I do apologise that this chapter is almost entirely dialogue. It did feel 'Fairy-Tail-ish' since they often have these sort of scenes before all the craziness starts, but as a fanon it does seem to drag a bit. I hope you still enjoyed it, and know that next chapter things will indeed get 'crazy'. ;P
- My decision to include Lisanna might seem a bit odd, but I really do like her character and wanted her to take more of a lead role in this fanon but keep it believable in the process. I don't know why she really gets so much hate from some fans, I love her Animal-Soul magic and only wished she could do more in the series. I suppose that's what fanon is for!
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