Chapter 19: Arconologia
Len let out a small hiss as Mei bandaged up his right shoulder, "Can't you be gentler?" He groaned with the members all back at the camp to rest up and heal up their injuries.
"Only if you stop moving about!" Mei cried. She then finished bandaging his arm and then stared at his empty shoulder, "Are you going to be okay with this?"
"Who knows...?" Len muttered as he felt his lack of a right arm, "I'll figure something out." He then looked at the clouds above, 'I wonder if Vonca's alright… He managed to help us in our fight against Hades… he should have left by now.'
He heard a groan from the bushes nearby and then noticed Juvia climbing out in fours, "You're… Juvia Lockster!" He cried.
"Juvia!" Erza cried.
"You're okay?-!" Gray asked worriedly.
"Juvia's so sorry…" The water woman cried, "Juvia let Zeref get away…" She crawled up to Gray with her butt facing him, "Gray-sama, please punish me!-! Give it to me however you like…"
"I-I don't have those kind of hobbies!-!" Gray cried.
"A masochist?" Len wondered.
"All that's left is Gildarts." Lucy said.
"It's fine… I'm sure he's alright." Lucy tells her partner.
"Hm…" Cana sips on her coconut, 'Father…'
"So… I heard you got exiled? Gahahahaha, that's so lame!"
"Oh, shut it, pops!"
Cana spits out her drink in shock when Gildarts just suddenly appears next to Laxus to tease him on his exile, feeling a little disgusted that that man is her father but laughed it off with Lucy.
Elsewhere, in the blue ocean a few feet away from the island on a small boat sits the three ex-members of Grimoire Heart, "You looked really down, Meredy." Ultear said to the small girl, she wearing a pink singlet and blue hot shorts, "I know it may be hard right now, but let's try and forget everything. About Zeref, about Gimoire Heart, and everything."
Vonca sighed a little with his katana by his side; he changed to a white sleeveless shirt with black pants, "Meredy…" He then noticed a school of dolphins in the horizon, "Look, dolphins!" The time mage said excitedly.
"Hey, Ultear, Vonca…"
"What is it?"
"Was it you two, that attacked my village?"
Ultear looked down in guilt, Vonca looked away as well.
"My friends, my family… did you two…"
Meredy flinched in shock, "I knew we have to tell you in time." Vonca said, "I never thought that I would have try to look after you with my mind set on avenging Mei, so I could think less of killing anyone for my power."
"I thought that this life I have is my first time around." Ultear added, "That once I go to the Great Magic World, and complete the Time Ark, my second time around will begin. I believed that I have a chance to redo whatever I did before that I regret, that's why I was able to commit such inhuman atrocities. The second time around is going to be my true life, our true life… where we'll be happy. That's what all this is for…"
Meredy stood up, anger rising up from her, "I understand… this is simply my intent. And from others point of view, I looked like a monster. I'm a stupid woman who imagines she can create a happy life from piling up her sins."
The sensor mage is slowly losing her mental strength to just kill her right now, "I won't ask you to forgive me… but let me just say, I'm sorry…"
Vonca's eyes overshadowed by his bangs as he refused to looked at her, "I know… You can't forgive us. So…"
They heard a sickening stab, Vonca piercing his sword through his gut, "Let me… take all that hatred off you…"
"Vonca!" Ultear cried.
"Ultear… please find happiness with Meredy…" He fell off the side of the boat, "I love you…" and he fell right into the sea under them.
"VONCA!-!" Meredy screamed.
In the salty waters, Vonca slowly descends into the darkest abyss, 'The dark sea… huh…? What a perfect grave for someone like me… to disappear into the darkest depths…' A few seconds later, Meredy pops out of the water with Vonca on her back, "Meredy…?"
"Live on… please…"
He then noticed the seal on his right wrist, 'A sensory link?-!'
"I felt it…" The girl sobbed, "I understand it… your pain, your sadness, your guilt… You and Ultear raised me… I forgive you! You forgive you! So please, don't do something like this again!-! Don't leave me and Ultear alone! I love you too! I want to live with you and Ultear!-!"
Vonca felt a warm feeling that engulfs his heart, the warmth that he never felt since Mei died. He couldn't control his tears and they fall off the corner of his eyes, embracing the crying girl in his arms.
"WHAT DID YOU SAY?-!"
All the male S-class qualifiers minus Len all cried out loud in shock.
"I. Told. You. We're suspending the progress of the S-class advancement exam." Makarov announced.
"I don't understand at all, ji-san!-!" Gray cried.
"Why are you suspending it?-!" Natsu cried.
"I want to become S-class!" Gajeel cried.
"Levy's the nominated candidate, not you…" Elfman pointed out.
"Considering the circumstances, I have no choice in the matter."
"Among the candidates, there was a member of the council who infiltrated the guild, along with Grimoire Heart interfering as well…" Mirajane sums up, "Not to mention Len's injury."
"I guess there isn't much option this time round." Levy sighed.
"You're okay with this?-!" Gajeel cried.
"Why are you getting all worked up for…?" Lily questioned.
"Well, there isn't much say in the matter." Len sighed, "Oh well, easy come, easy go."
"GAAAHHH!-! I wanted to be an S-class, dammit!-!" Gray groaned.
"Don't worry! You'll make it next time, Gray-sama!" Juvia cheered him on.
"I guess even a Man has its limits…" Elfman sighed.
"There's no way I'm giving up! I will become S-class, no matter what the cost!" Natsu shouted, "Gray, Elfman, Levy and Len, you're all giving up, right?-! If that's the case, then I'll become S-class! You hear me, S-class!-!"
"Calm down, Natsu." Happy tells him.
"I supposed it can't be helped…" Makarov sighed, "I'll give a special exception and hold the final exam now. If you can win against me, I'll promote you to S-class, Natsu."
"Seriously, gramps?-!" Natsu said happily, "Alllllright! I'm all fired up! Here I go-"
It was over before it even started with Makarov landed a giant punch to the fire dragon slayer, K. him instantly.
"That was over before it begun…" Len laughed dryly.
They all then just left to either sulk over it or just went on with their own stuff. Len right now is lying on his back looking at the sky. For some reason, the quietness of his mind is nearly unsettling. He was so used to having Diablo taunt him or just be a nuisance that not hearing anything felt foreign. 'I still can't believe that he is really gone for good...'
He then heard a loud bellow from that shook the entire island by its grounds, "What is that?-!" Mei cried.
"It's so loud!" Elfman cried.
"This voice…!-!" Gajeel cried.
"What is it?-!" Freed cried.
"A dragon's cry…" Len muttered in shock.
"Eh?-!" Levy cried.
"A dragon?-!" Lisanna said.
"But it sounds so menacing…" Len muttered, shaking on his knees, "Unlike Freeztia's own cry… what on earth…?"
"Is everyone okay?-!" Lucy cried as she and the rest run back to the camp, "It's so loud!-!" Happy cried.
"He must be from back then…" Gildarts muttered, his old wounds acting up.
"Back then…?" Len wonders.
"Over there!-!" Lily cried, pointing to the dark figure above them, a large shape of a dragon, but with scaled wings, "What is that?-!" Gray cried.
"It's huge!" Elfman cried.
"That is a…" Juvia muttered.
"A dragon?-!" Bickslow cried.
"What the heck is that…?-!" Lucy muttered in shock.
"Is this for real…" Gajeel muttered in shock.
"A real-life dragon…" Wendy muttered.
"I knew it… Dragons do exist…" Natsu muttered.
"The Black Dragon of Apocalypse; Acnologia…" Makarov muttered in fear.
"Acnologia…?" Len know he heard that name before, but where…?
"You, over there! You know where Igneel is right now, don't you!-!" Natsu shouted at the black dragon, "And Grandine and Metalicana too!-!"
"Knock it off, Natsu!" Gildarts cried.
Len felt a pressure that is coming down on them, "Everyone, get away!" He cried out, just as the black dragon descends down on them and generating a huge shockwave on its landing. The black dragon gave out a loud roar that uproots all the nearby trees around them. Now that it is closer, they can get a good look at it, its body covered in runic patterns, its eyes white and pupil-less and its unique scaled wings and its blue mouth and tongue.
Not just the sheer size of the beast, even its presence is intimidating, all of the Fairy Tail mages even the S-class including Gildarts all shook in fear. Arcnologia rises into the air, "Run for it!-!" Gildarts cried, as the evil dragon falls down on the ground hard, the impact of its landing is immersive with the shockwave and tailwind caused by it shook the earth under their feet and tossing some of them into the air.
"Is this for real?-!" Elfman cried.
"Look at the destruction it caused!-!" Levy cried.
"What the hell is that thing, and where did it come from?-!" Cana cried.
"Hurry to the ship!-!"
They all heard the crash mage's words and dashes in the direction of their vessel, dodging as many of the dragon's strikes as possible, "Hurry!-!" Erza commanded as they all head to the ship, "We're all going back, to Fairy Tail!-!"
"Wendy! You can talk to dragons, can't you?-!" Carla cried, "Can't you do something about this?-!"
"It's not like I know their tongue, but all dragons are incredibly intelligent!" Wendy stated, "That dragon should be able to understand human words!"
'It's like… he didn't care less about our lives…' Len thought, 'Is there such a dragon, one that sees humans as nothing more than just insects…?'
At that moment, Makarov stood behind them in front of the dark dragon beast, "All of you, head to the ship." The old master said as he took off the coat off his shoulders and he grew in size to close of the dragon itself, stopping its rampage from getting any closer to them.
"Master!" Erza cried.
"Makarov-san!" Len cried, "Stop it! There's no way you can fight in your condition!"
"If you're fighting, then we'll fight as well!" Freed declared.
"That's right!" Bickslow shouted, "Let's smash that thing to bits!"
"Are you planning on disobeying your master's final orders?-!" Makarov shouted, "You shitty brats?-!"
"F-Final…?" Len muttered.
"I'm a Dragon Slayer!-!" Natsu shouted angrily, "If anyone's going to be that thing's opponent, it's going to be m-" He was cut off as Laxus grabs onto his scarf and yank him away towards the ship, "We're getting out of here, Natsu." Laxus tells him.
"Laxus! You bastard-" The pink-haired dragon slayer stopped his rant as he notices tears coming from the blonde.
Len looked back at the old giant, before pulling onto Erza's hand, "Let's go, it's what he wanted."
The scarlet knight looked back at the old master, before following Len as he ran towards the ship as well, "Everyone, get to the ship!" He shouted as they all dashes towards the ship. The old giant nothing but the background behind them, the giant, "I don't know what it is you're after, but I won't let you pass any further than this!" Makarov shouted, "Because behind me, are all my little brats!"
That sentence made Len stop his tracks, he looked back at the fight as the old man was tossed back hard and return back to his chibi size, "What was I thinking… damn it!" He cursed as he ran back, shocking everyone as usually Natsu is the one charging in without thinking, "Hold on, Master Makarov!" Len shouted as he summons out the Motor Knight and dashes right into the fight.
"Motor Drive!-!" He activates the sword's motor and the blade burst into flames, charging towards at Acnologia and slashing at the arm, of course, it did no damage to it, "Damn it!" He was then swat back down beside Makarov. "Len, get away from here!" Makarov shouted, "Something like this is beyond you!"
"I'll never run away!" Len shouted, getting back up with his sword as support, "I'll never… leave a comrade behind again! I'll never…" He thought back to the time he lost his closest comrades in the dungeon, "…let anyone die again!" His own magic spiked as he launched himself at the black dragon, his other seven swords formed out beside him and he flew straight towards the dragon's shoulder, he then switched out for Sky Rider and he slashes down the scale, before he switching to Motor Knight and slashes down, followed by Earth Breaker.
He continues followed by Inferno, and then White Day, his chain sword, Hakai and finally, Light Crescent, "Eight Swords Style: Eight-Petal Lotus!" He finished it off with the Motor Drive, for once is actually causing damage to the dragon's tough scales as they seemly made a small dent where his blades came in contact. "This is harder with just one arm..."
"He… is actually hurting Acnologia…?-!" Makarov cried. He then saw all the others running towards the fight and taking on the black monster, firing every magic they have.
"I want to let you know, I was against this." Laxus tells his grandfather, "But do you think that they would run and leave an old geezer behind? It is your guild after all."
"Take this!" Len shouted as he threw three of his swords at the same wounds before throwing another three after another, "Six Swords Style: Mark of the Beast! (This reverence to the six pointed star symbol in the Bible of the old testament)" The six blades slashes the same wound with the star symbol wound took shape on its scales.
"And another!" He threw forward another two of his swords at once with one in his mouth, "Dual Swords Style: Great Comet!" The two are slashed right through another wound and two vertical slashes are left.
"One more!" Len shouted as he grabs the Hakai, "Eight Swords Style: The Devil's Will!" He stabs forward at the dragon with the remaining seven swords flying with him and the eight blades stabs right into the same wound. Len then leaped back with the recoil of the smack that the black dragon hit him with, sliding onto the ground to a stop, "Damn, looks like I have to use it after all…"
He raised his hand up, "Mei! The Angel's Eye!"
"Y-Yes!" Mei complied and tossed the sword towards him, and the thin sword floats next to him. He threw up the sword in his hand before a magic circle appears and a long silver scimitar, its blade silver with a certain writings near its silver diamond shaped guard and brown curved wooden handle, "It's been a while since I draw this out, Silver Fang."
He raised the scimitar and pointed forward as his remaining eight swords circle around him, his own magic spiked and along with Willpower fire flickering all around him, "Everyone, stand back." Len warns them as he leaped up towards Acnologia. The eight blades, plus the newly summoned Silver Fang spun around him before he stabs forward using the Angel's Eye, his swords spiral around him, "Ten Swords Style: Final Testament!" He stabs forward as the green flames surrounds his fencing sword and he made in contact with Acnologia's head with a huge impact.
The intensity of that attack was obvious to everyone that witnessed it, as it was more shocking as the dragon took a small step back, "It moved back?-!" Freed cried.
"That blondie sure is strong!" Bickslow commented.
But then, there was a large cracking sound. It then followed by the breaking of all of the nine swords that is spiraling around him, "T-The swords are…!" Len muttered in shock, before his fencing sword too was destroyed into countless of metal pieces. The black dragon gave a roar and with a flick of his head sends Len flying back towards them and crashing into the ground hard.
"Len-niisan!" Lucy cried as she ran towards her brother. Acnologia then flapped its wings and flew right up into the air. "It flew up!" Happy cried.
"Is it coming down again?" Carla wonders out loud.
'It's not using its full power as it did with me…' Gildarts thought in horror.
At that moment, the dragon starts to inhale a large volume of air into its lungs as the magic around the area spiked in response, "A breath attack!" Gajeel cried.
"Is it planning on blowing away the whole island?-!" Cana cried.
"Quickly, anyone who can use defensive magic, put every power you have into it now!" Erza shouted.
"Damn it, there isn't enough time to draw the runes." Freed said.
"There are plenty of defensive spells that doesn't require runes." Levy tells him.
"Way to go, Levy!" Bickslow said.
"Everyone, focus your magic onto Freed!" Lisanna cried.
"Let's all hold hands!" Mirajane cried.
They all got together and placed their hands on each other's, placing everyone ounce of their remaining power towards defending against that attack. Len was offered a hand by Erza and Mei, which he gladly took while the red-head hold onto his shoulder, "Let's all go home." He smiled.
"To Fairy Tail!"
That was the last thing he heard as the attack rages at them, the bright blue beam crashes down on the island of Tenroujima. The waves splashes all around the sea as the shockwave blasts pass everything in the vicinity of the attack. Those who are near the area could only stare in shock as the beam clashes onto the small island; and with the dissipating beam, the island… was gone.
On January 16, X784; Tenroujima, was erased from the map.
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