estella-may said: Talk about Jerza and/or
I may not fangirl over every pairing in Fairy Tail, but I support and appreciate each one of the Big 5 (Nalu, Jerza, Gruvia, Elfever, and Gale).
And today I want to talk about how good the Jella and Erza pairing is for both of them.
Erza has a touching vulnerable side. Probably because she was a child-slave, she craves normalcy, including something like getting married. This is played up more in the anime and movie than the manga, but it’s part of her character.
In the KoSS arc, think how excited Erza was at the prospect of a simple picnic. In the movie, she goes out and buys a wedding dress. That makes her so happy that other people notice her good mood. Much more telling, the wedding dress is the only requip Coordinator cannot dispel.
In the manga, Erza’s the only one I can think of who has appeared in a wedding dress on a chapter cover. When she found out Alzack and Bisca were married, her reaction (played off comically, but still showing her character) was this:
But the Erza that we mostly see is the strong, capable one.
Erza feels a great responsibility to protect her guild. Part of it stems from the fact she’s S-class and one of the strongest mages in FT. Another factor is because she abandoned her childhood friends at the ToH, and feels the guilt from that.
But I think that this responsibility not only spurs her on, but is also a burden to her.
Erza is a smart, skilled, and strong fighter. But with one or two exceptions, I’ve not enjoyed her fights. I contrast her demeanor with Natsu’s to explain why.
Natsu, too fights for his friends, but he’s also a character who enjoys fighting. While battling Gildarts at Tenrou, he’s serious but smiling. Same with the dragon slayers’ fight–he was avenging Lucy, but he totally had fun while doing it. He’s often exuberant at the end of a tough battle.
Erza, on the other hand, is always serious, some times desperately so. I noticed this first in Phantom Lord, when she was so broken up because of what Aria did to Makarov. She chastised herself severely for not being with him. Even when she took the blast from Jupiter or saved Natsu from Aria, even when she’s strong and capable, I can almost see how heavily duty weighs on her.
It’s the same in her fights with Azuma at Tenrou and Minerva at GMG.
My husband views Erza’s protectiveness of her guild as maternal. And yes, she is often like a tigress protecting her cubs.
Think about the circumstances in which her magic manifested herself—a time of great crisis, when she needed the strength to fight for her friends. Would Erza be the Knight if she’d had a normal childhood? Maybe, maybe not. She might’ve had a different magical ability altogether.
But because she has this responsibility toward the guild, she finds it very hard to be vulnerable to them. Look at the way she goes off by herself to cry after Jellal is arrested, or when she insists she’s fine at Eclipse when she’s not:
And while the guild would never hesitate to back Erza up, they want her to always be their S-class Erza. This is how they see her:
This panel, btw, clinched for me why Erza should seek a romantic relationship outside of her guild. Who wants to be in a relationship with someone who can’t handle you being weak some times? Especially since Erza’s dynamic with most of her fellow members is her being a kind of an older sister to them.
Jellal, on the other hand, can be with Erza in her strength and her weakness.
He knew her when she was just a frightened child-slave. He was the natural leader of their group, he drew her out, gave her a last name, fought to save her, took punishment on her behalf. She looked up to him, probably had a crush on him.
He knows, intimately, where she’s coming from. She doesn’t have to put up a front for him.
And she doesn’t need to protect him in that maternal way she protects her guild. He’s her match in power and maturity. Like she said to Mira, he can take care of himself:
And Erza is good for Jellal, too.She gave him the cold, hard truth about his past crimes in the Nirvana arc. And she wouldn’t let him take the easy way out. She forced him to confront what he’d done and to atone by living, not committing suicide.
She gave him hope. She fought for his life when he would’ve sacrificed it in his guilt.
He was vulnerable before her, when he confessed he was afraid of getting his memories back. And her response was:
I’m here for you.
This is the woman Jellal hurt deeply. He turned her friends against her. He killed someone she cared for. He was going to sacrifice her life for his evil plans.
And she’s forgiven him, and wanted to walk his path with him.
Circumstances made it so that Jellal was imprisoned and Erza sealed in a bubble for seven years. During the time she was gone, Jellal managed to walk his own road of atonement. He’s not clingingly dependent on her.
But she’s still his bridge from the shadows to the light, from his underground existence to the normal world. He recognizes that and is grateful for it. And though he still feels he does not deserve her and pushes her away (with that whopper about having a fiancee), Erza understands him quite well.
And she’s willing to give him the time and space he needs to complete his journey.
Jellal taking the Oracion Seis under his wing, offering them a chance to go from darkness to light, is huge for his own redemption. So is his partnering with Doranbolt, the only surviving member of the Magic Council. I feel good about his transition to the world of light, as he calls it. After all he’s done and will do this arc, I don’t think he’ll be a fugitive any longer.
Jellal and Erza are the most self-aware of the big 5 couples. They’re the ones furthest down the romantic road, with the kiss (or almost-kiss) they shared. I think they’d be the first to make their relationship official.
And Erza still has that wedding dress in her inventory. :)