The Farmer’s Daughter
A/N: First off, let me just say T H A N K Y O U! I mean, holy balls! Over 100 notes on the first chapter! :D You guys are amazing! I got quite a few nice comments, and I read all of y’all’s tags and I’m so happy you all are liking it so far!
This chapter was a lot of fun to write, and I hope y’all like it as much as I do :)
Creds to the lovely @not-just-any-fangirl for editing
Chapter Two: Dance With The Devil
Summary: Natsu Dragneel was just trying to find work in a world full of stuck-up people when he met Lucy Heartfilia at his new weird job as a ranch hand for pyrotisserie and undead devil goats. But if he thought the animals were weird, why was the farmer’s daughter so bright? No really, she’s glowing.
Being a morning person never really bothered Natsu. He treasured those rare sunrises where he woke up early enough to watch the sky bleed red and then quickly begin to blush a light pink.
He knew Jude said that he didn’t have to be there until 8, but his natural curiosity and the weirdness of the place made him get there early to do some investigating.
He had already answered one of the many questions floating around in his brain this morning when he drove through the front gates.
When did the smell start?
The second Natsu had driven over the threshold, the smell was there. It was immediate, like a sudden downpour of rain from seemingly innocent gray clouds. There was no warning, no gradual increase or build up to it.
Natsu reversed past the wooden fence out back onto the dirt road.
…Nothing. Not even a wiff.
He pulled forward.
Star dust, meteors, shooting stars. He could smell it all.
So it was, literally, just the ranch that smelled like the stars, not even the area outside the perimeter…Interesting.
Natsu pulled his red pick up truck to the barn and hopped out to where Capricorn was already standing at the door waiting for him.
Well there went his investigating time. How did he know he was coming early?
“Good morning Mr. Dragneel,” Capricorn greeted smoothly.
“Mornin’ Cap!” Natsu replied cheerfully. “What’s up?”
“‘What is up’ is that you’ll be working with the goats today.” Capricorn said.
“Cool! Are they weird like the other animals on that chart too?” Natsu asked.
Capricorn’s lips twitched slightly before answering. “Not particularly, just be gentle with them. They’re quite fragile, but if you agitate them too much, they have the temper of a devil.” Apparently that last part was some type of a joke because Capricorn actually chuckled a bit before covering it up with a cough.
Natsu was worried. He didn’t usually do gentle. At all. He was actually well known for his destructive tendencies. Especially for things with explosions, or anything with fire. But he had to do this. If he went back to Fairy Tail fired on the first day, Erza would “castrate him and then nail his testicles on her trophy wall in her bedroom” as she so sweetly put it. But it wasn’t even the thought of losing his family jewels that had Natsu so antsy.
It was Gray.
That ice bastard. Natsu had come back early from a job before for being fired for, completely accidental, destruction of property. Seriously, the guy had wanted Natsu to grill a bunch of steaks for his party that he was having later, and Makarov thought it was innocent enough for him to handle, but the man didn’t say how he wanted them cooked. So Natsu burnt them to the consistency of charcoal- because how else would you eat a steak?- and thought that he could get them all done with a simple fire dragon’s roar. What Natsu didn’t count on though was the field of dry grass getting burnt as well…and half of the guy’s house. Gray had mocked the shit out of him for it, which led to their usual daily brawls, which brought the destruction of half of the building.
Cana and Mira had beaten the hell out them for destroying the bar. Mira because that was her work station, and Cana because they broke “the good stuff” that was behind the counter. And then of course Erza had banged their heads together giving them both mild concussions, demanding that they immediately start on repairs.
He would not be put through that again.
“Sure, Cap. Not a problem,” Natsu assured him.
‘I can do this, I can do this’ Natsu chanted through his brain as he walked to the barn to look at the chart for the instructions on the goats.
Nothing too difficult, cleaning out the stalls, grooming, making sure they get their daily dose of flesh…
Natsu checked that last part again. Yup, raw, unseasoned flesh. He was supposed to fill a whole trough full of it. Well whatever floats their boats.
He walked over to the feed room. And at the very end was a locked closet with a sign that said:
DO NOT OPEN UNLESS FEEDING THE GOATS. IF YOU LEAVE THE DOOR OPEN, I WILL DROWN YOU DOWN TO THE SEVEN RINGS OF HELL.
Natsu did not doubt that she would.
Upon unlocking and opening the door, the most foul stench Natsu ever had the displeasure of smelling wafted into his sensitive nostrils.
Shelves full of rotten flesh were stacked up before him. Natsu could usually depict whether the scent is mammal or human, but the smell was so profuse there was no way he would be able to. He couldn’t tell by looking at it either. It was all mushed up together in browns and pinks.
Trying to keep the dozen pancakes down he had this morning, Natsu put on some gloves and was trying to figure out if he should breathe through his nose or his mouth. Neither was appealing so he just tried to hold his breath.
Natsu quickly grabbed a shovel and dumped a bunch of the meat into a wheelbarrow to take outside. He swiftly ran outside to the pen filled with the goats to find the trough.
He was in so much of a hurry that he didn’t notice the goat in his path until he sent it flying in front of him.
“Oh god, shit, shit, shit, fuck me. I’m dead. This is it. My life is over. The Dragneel’s are over. Forgive me Igneel.” Natsu was frantic. He ran over to the goat only to see it laying down unmoving with it’s neck at an odd angle.
“Jesus, I’m so sorry little guy, oh my god.” Natsu got up and started pacing back and forth.
“Uh hey Jude,” Natsu mumbled to himself, “so I kinda killed one of your goats on accident by plowing it over. I’m really sorry, please don’t fire me ‘cause I really don’t want to lose my ba-”
Natsu slowly turned around to see the goat that was dead mere seconds ago standing up and snapping it’s neck back into place.
“Holy-you just-fuck my ass you just came back to life!” Natsu exclaimed. The little goat with horns slightly longer and spikier than normal simply stood still and looked at him.
“That was coolest thing I’ve ever seen! You’re such a-OW!” Faster than Natsu would think possible, the goat bolted forward and rammed its head into Natsu’s legs.
“What the hell man!? I said I was sorry! SHIT! Would you stop?!“ The goat continued to chase Natsu around the pen, attempting to keep ramming him in the process. It looked like Natsu was doing a strange dance in the distance. He not only had to dodge the little devil’s attacks, he had to swerve around the other goats that were just standing around.
A light giggle a ways off alerted Natsu that he was not alone with the animals. He quickly snapped his head up just in time to see a pair of big, chocolate brown eyes looking right at him before they disappeared into the forest the person was hiding in.
But in that moment of hesitation, the goat that was ever pursuing him took the opportunity to slam Natsu right into the waiting wheelbarrow of flesh that had yet to be poured in the trough.
Leo and Scorpio couldn’t stop laughing.
When Natsu came into the house later on in the evening covered in dirt and smelling like the apocalypse, they knew exactly what happened.
“You killed one of the goats didn’t you.” Leo dead panned. It wasn’t even a question.
“I…yeah. I did.” Natsu admitted sheepishly.
“Dude, that goat gave you hell.” Scorpio laughed out.
“That little shit is Lucifer himself,“ Natsu muttered angrily, "I wouldn’t have taken this long if the thing would have just left me alone!”
“I warned you about their temper Mr. Dragneel."Capricorn said.
"Yeah, yeah,” Natsu gave him a dismissive wave of the hand, “I’m gonna go take a show-”
“WHO LEFT THE FUCKING MEAT CLOSET OPEN?!”
It turned out that Natsu didn’t have to take a shower. Aquarius had washed him out of the house and out onto the dirt road, leaving him looking like a wet dog. She wouldn’t let him back inside to properly wash off either, so Natsu just headed back to his truck.
He didn’t see the golden hair flowing out behind the trees when he left.