Part 2 of We Are Young

Drabble collection of side-stories, outtakes and photo edits from ‘We Are Young’. Friendship-centric with some ships on the side.

Teen (13+)
Chapters: 13
Words: 20,500

We Are Young: Sidestories

Chapter 7


Or, Five Times Mira asked Laxus How He Felt About Freed

Chapter Notes:

Mira, Freed and Laxus! This was originally included in ‘Triad’, my OT3 fic for them, but it’s set in the WAY-verse so I thought it’s a better fit here. It kinda requires some background on how the relationship between these three evolved in the course of We Are Young.

The scenes here are taken from various points in the main WAY story. It’s quite easy to know when. I’ll put in clarifications in the ending notes, too.

The first time Mira asked, it was meant to hurt.

She wanted a reaction, she wanted to rile Laxus up.

That afternoon, she found him sitting on the bleachers overlooking the soccer field, and she decided she’ll strike.

He wasn’t alone, but Mira couldn’t care less about the other boy — Justine was a fragile weak nobody for all she cared. He was just that pretty boy who Laxus seemed to go everywhere with these days, along with two others, who weren’t around that afternoon somehow: the stoner kid and that stuck-up brunette.

She didn’t care about the band thing either. What pissed her off was that Dreyar — the only other interesting student in the goddamn school — was being boring. He’s getting into less fights, and he had been ignoring— No. He had been avoiding her! Since when was he a coward?

“Hey, Dreyar, fancy seeing you here.” was her greeting as she perched on the bleachers above them. She made a show of looking curiously at the guitars they each held. “Serenading each other? Planning a duet?”

Laxus rolled his eyes as he turned towards her, his expression annoyed while Freed looked down, pointedly avoiding looking at her. “Piss off, Strauss.”

“No, no, I’m not picking a fight.” she said, waving a dismissive hand. “I’m just curious ’bout a couple of stuff, so I thought I’d ask you.”

That was when Freed started gathering his things. “I… I’m gonna go—”

Laxus looked at the other boy, momentarily distracted. “Freed—”

Mira faked concern. “Aw, did I scare your boyfriend?”

Freed tensed up, more so than before, then shook his head at Laxus and tried a small smile as he struggled to put his bass guitar back in its case. “Laxus, I’ll go. I’m-… intruding.”

At this, Laxus frowned. “You’re not going anywhere. If there’s anyone intruding, it’s her.” he finished with a glare towards Mira. “What do you want? We’re in the middle of practice here.”

“Oh, sure, sure, I’ll make it quick.” she reassured, watching as Freed slowly sat back down, still trying his best not to look at her.

She smirked when Laxus reached out to grip the bassist’s guitar, in what looked like a gesture of support, to say ‘Don’t let her scare you, I’ve got this.’

That’s just what she needed.

“I’ve just been really curious, ’cause people talk, y’know? Word gets ’round. They say Dreyar’s been really mellow lately. Did Justine here turn you into a good boy, somehow? You like him that much? Stopped being tough and badass, avoiding some real good fights?” she smirked when she saw his mouth twitch, and she knew it was working — “Sneaking around to make out with your boyfriend under the bleachers, that it? Never figured you for one of them, really, but I guess you never know a person—”

It surprised her when it was Freed who reacted first, turning to her with blushing cheeks and a set frown. “That’s not true, Laxus is not—”

But he got cut off when Laxus said, “What’s it to you?”

Mira blinked. “W-What? What’s it to me? Well, I—”

“Why do you care?” Laxus asked coldly, meeting her gaze. “If you’re so curious, then here: I can’t go ’round punching people ’cause I need my hands in good condition to play. I don’t fucking sneak around. And if I make out with anyone, which is none of your goddamn business in the first place, I don’t need to hide under the fucking bleachers.”

She scoffed. “Wait. So it’s true? You’re gay now? ’Cause of pretty little Justine here?”

He didn’t falter. “So what? Again. None of your fucking business. Never figured you for a nosy gossip, Strauss. I thought you had standards. Guess I overestimated you, my bad.”

“Fuck you.” was all Mira said before she stood up and left with a huff. “Enjoy being disgusting.”

As she stomped off, she heard remnants of their conversation.

“Laxus, you shouldn’t have said that. Now she thinks you’re… you’re like me, and she might tell everyone—”

“I don’t give a shit. There are worse things than the whole school assuming I’m making out with you. She can’t talk to you — about you — like that.”

Mira bit her lip as their voices faded out. She didn’t mean it, not really. She wouldn’t judge him or Justine or anyone for their sexuality. But she wanted to hurt Laxus — and Freed, by extension — so she used the words she knew would do the trick. And it worked. And least with Freed.

Later, when she learned to be kinder, she also learned how to say sorry. One of the first things she did was to apologize to Freed and Laxus about that afternoon.

The second time Mira asked, she was more curious and honest. She had only been in the constant company of the band for about a month. They were the only ones in school, in her year, who genuinely brought her comfort and refuge after what happened with Lisanna.

They were good friends to have, she decided. They were a tight-knit group but they let her in easily. They were quiet when they wanted to be, loud when they needed to be, and kind — they were always kind, in their own unique ways. Mira was learning to be kind, now. For her sister.

She was just getting used to their antics — Bixlow’s endless energy and enthusiasm for anything and everything under the sun, Evergreen being mostly graceful and quiet but all too easy to rile up, Freed’s long-suffering cycle of patience, exasperation and amusement, and lastly, Laxus being a stoic, grumbling guy trailing behind the three when in actuality he was leader of the band. He always complained that they were noisy and annoying but anyone can tell that he was fond of them anyway.

The four had a certain sense of belongingness, they knew their exact places with each other and within their group, that it was somehow easy to get used to being with them: Bixlow cracked a joke, Ever was either offended or unimpressed, Freed rolls his eyes, and Laxus says it was stupid. For her part, Mira laughed — if only to appreciate the drummer’s effort. Bixlow always told her he was happy she hangs out with them, she’s the only one who laughs at his jokes.

But of course, things don’t always go perfectly.

“Freed’s really late.” Evergreen said, turning towards Laxus. “You’re sure you didn’t miss a text or anything?”

“I told you, I’ve been calling him too. He ain’t picking up.” Laxus said bitingly. They were at The Strauss’ — it was the start of Mira’s afterschool shift in their bar, and the band decided to meet up there to wait for each other before heading to the studio for band practice.

“But Freed’s never late.” Bixlow frowned, wringing his hands and bouncing slightly in his seat. He was getting restless. “He never misses a call. He always answers texts. He never forgets to charge his phone. Something must’ve happened.”

Laxus looked at the drummer before forcefully shrugging the thought off. “Don’t be stupid, it’s Freed — he avoids trouble like the plague. We’re enough trouble for him, what with his parents—”

“Maybe it’s his parents, then?” Evergreen asked.

This time Mira had to ask, too. “His parents don’t like that he’s in the band?”

“His parents don’t like us.” Bixlow replied. “Maybe they told him not to hang out anymore?”

“Freed’s more stubborn than you think.” Laxus said. “And his parents don’t care much as long as he’s not getting into trouble, he’s got good grades and gets admitted to Fiore U.”

They heard the familiar chime of the bells in the bar door, indicating the arrival of a customer. The four of them ignored it, distracted by what could be holding up their remaining friend, but they jumped when Freed’s familiar voice reached them.

“Sorry, I’m late!” he said, panting. “Uh-… Stuff… happened.”

His friends stared at him for a minute. His usually neat hair was in disarray, his jacket was rumpled, the shirt underneath had a tear on the collar, and he was barely holding up his guitar case. Most noticeable of all was the bruise beside his lips.

Laxus was the first to react. “What the fuck happened to you?!”

“Freed, are you okay?” Evergreen asked, quickly hopping off her seat, grabbing her friend’s face before hurriedly patting him down, trying to assess whatever damage was done by whatever happened to him…

“Ow.” Freed winced when she accidentally squeezed an arm. “Ever, please. I’m-… I’m fine.”

“Dude.” Bixlow took the bassist’s guitar case, easing the weight of the item off him. He also took Freed’s backpack. “What the hell?”

Mira watched as they fussed over Freed, until finally Laxus stepped down and in a low voice, said, “Freed. Answer my question. What happened?”

Ever took a step sideways, letting Laxus in but still holding on to Freed’s arm, ready to drag him away at any moment. Bixlow stepped back warily, exchanging a helpless look with Mira.

“I didn’t pick a fight.” Freed said quickly, looking away. “I just… I got cornered on my way here, they said they knew you. Had a question. Of course I didn’t believe them. I tried to turn them down and just keep walking. They didn’t let me. Then they made fun of me because I look like a girl. Nothing new, really.” He said that last part with a dismissive shrug, even with a nervous laugh.

Laxus growled. “Nothing new? They fucking hurt you.”

“I’m fine. I’m here, right?”

“Where are they?” Laxus squared his jaws. “I’ll kill them.” He stepped backward to stomp out the bar, but his friends quickly moved to stop him.

“No. No, you’re not going anywhere!” Freed said, quickly raising his arms to cling to the taller teen’s shirt. “It’s fine, I’m okay, I took care of them!”

They all looked at him. “What?”

“They might have landed a punch, but I managed to grab something-… a pipe, I think, and they’re down. You think they’d leave me conscious if I didn’t knock them out first?”

“Wha— How-?”

Freed frowned. “I’m not as good as your sister, but I’m trained in kendo, Laxus. I can take care of myself.”

Laxus looked away, obviously trying to still himself, before he looked at Freed again. “I bet you went soft on them.”

“There’s no need to beat them bloody.”

“They deserve it.”

“I don’t care.” Freed sighed.

“I do, and you’re gonna tell me where they are, and I’m going there—”

“Laxus. No.”

When the two just stared at each other, both defiant, Evergreen chose to intervene. “You’re still hurt.” she whispered, rubbing Freed’s arm consolingly. “And we need to put something in that bruise. Mira?”

“A-Ah, yes, there should be a first aid kit upstairs!” Mira said, quickly snapping out of her trance. “And some ice on the fridge. I’ll go with you.”

Freed attempted a smile towards her. “Thanks, Mira. I… I know the way.”


“Please make sure Laxus doesn’t go anywhere.”

With that, she understood. Freed wanted to get himself fixed up, but he didn’t want to risk Laxus going out and picking a fight for himself. And he was asking Mira for help.

Mira wanted to ask ‘Why me?’

She didn’t, and she just watched as Evergreen led Freed up the stairs, to the Strauss’ living quarters. Bix followed them quickly with Freed’s things when he remembered he was holding on to them. She might have also heard Elfman meet them halfway and ask what happened.

That left her standing awkwardly with Laxus.

“Smartass.” Laxus grumbled. “Tellin’ you to look after me like I’m some kid. Just ’cause he knows you can kick my ass if you tried.”

Mira sighed. “You really shouldn’t go there, Laxus.”

“Never thought I’d hear you say that.” he scoffed. “You don’t think those bastards need to be taught not to mess with mine?”

She didn’t want to answer that. “You play lead.” she said instead, calling on reason. “You have a gig this weekend. Freed won’t forgive you if you break your hand punching someone.”

Laxus didn’t reply, and simply sank back down on his seat. Mira watched as he heaved a heavy sigh, running a hand through his hair. “He shouldn’t be involved with my shit.”

“He already is.” Mira said softly. “Whether you like it or not. That’s what being friends mean, I guess.”

“I can’t fucking stand seeing him hurt.”

With that, Mira paused, studying her friend’s expression. Laxus looked angry, frustrated. She never saw him like this before. Not even when he was blaming himself for not doing anything back in the accident that cost them Lisanna.

Carefully, she sat beside him and asked, “Laxus, do you like Freed?”

He turned to her, blinking. The question must have taken them aback. “What?”

“Do you… um, care about him?”

“He’s my best friend. Of course I care about him.”

“No, I mean-… Do you have feelings for him?”

“What are you talking about? Feelings— No, not like that. I don’t… I don’t do that shit.”

She looked at him pointedly.

Laxus looked back, just as stubborn. “The band can’t lose him, he’s our bassist, our lyricist, and our manager and our referee and-… okay, he’s basically what keeps this shit from falling apart.” he admitted. “We won’t last a day without him.”

Mira nodded, accepting his answer.

Of course, she thought. Of course she wouldn’t have seen Laxus this frustrated. Laxus never had friends like his bandmates before.

The third time she asked, she was drunk.

It was after a gig. The band stayed even after The Strauss’ closing time. Even though they was still together in Fiore U., the first few months of college still made them homesick for Magnolia. It’s been a while since they last played in the bar, since they last spent time this much time with Mira.

The four of them, with Mira and Elfman, were lounging on one corner of the bar. Bixlow was telling a story about some class he had in university. He was drunk, not much of a surprise, so he drawled through his story complete with attempts at sound effects and voices. Evergreen, also drunk, which was the surprising bit, decided she’d help him tell the story. She only managed to add half-sentences before she gets reduced to giggles and starts hitting Bixlow because ‘you’re hilarious stop it i can’t-!’.

The duo made for great entertainment at 1 in the morning. Elfman was trying to stifle his laughter in case Evergreen gets mad at him for not taking her seriously.

Freed was leaning back comfortably against the couch, one arm around Mira, who was curled up warmly on his side. They’ve had enough to drink and they were drunk themselves, so they were giggling and laughing too. When she wrapped her arms around his torso and tucked her head on his shoulder, he only smiled and returned the gesture, running his hands through her silver hair.

Laxus came in then, back from somewhere, the toilet maybe — hell, they didn’t remember at that point. He slumped on the other end of the couch beside the two, squinting because he was a bit drunk by then as well.

Dammit, they were all drunk. Stupid things inevitably happen.

“For two people who’re just fake-dating to get your parents off your back, you look really cozy.” Laxus said as he leaned back against the couch, making himself comfortable. That meant nudging the other two because they were taking up too much space.

“Aw, shut up, I missed you guys.” Mira whined, and cuddled closer to Freed. She liked the rumbling sound from his chest when he laughed, and the feel of his fingers in her hair.

There was a vibrating sound then, and Freed groaned as he took his phone from his pocket. “In speaking of parents… I’m screwed.” he said. “I have to take this, gimme me a minute. Do I sound drunk?”

“Your drunk talk sounds more sober than our sober talk, man.” Laxus provided helpfully for once.

“Nice.” Freed said. No one told him that if he was sober, he wouldn’t say ‘Nice’ in response to anything. He eased Mira off him before standing up and excusing himself.

Mira pouted, turning to Laxus and resting her chin on his propped-up knee as she complained, “Laxus, you monster, you made my boyfriend leave.”

Maybe it was the alcohol, but he just smirked at her and poked her forehead. “Maybe he’s tired of you being all over him.”

Mira pouted, and proceeded to poke at his chest. “Noooo, you’re just jealous because you can’t be all over hiiiim~”

He laughed. “You’re drunk. Where’d that come from?”

“No, I’m not drunk! You’re drunk!” she shook her head petulantly. “Laxus, you should date Freed so you don’t get jealous of me!”

“Okay, you’re really drunk.”

“I’m serious though, you two are so in love, like, you live together already and stuff? You cook breakfast for him! You never cook for anyone!”

“Correction. I sleep. On his couch. ’Cause gramps is mad at me.” he paused, because he didn’t know where he was going, and then he got back on track. Shit, being drunk sucks. “So I cook for Freed. Because he’s a good person and he lets me sleep on his couch.”

“’Cause he’s perfect, right?”

“He’s perfect, yeah. Prettier than you too.” it was then that he got an idea — a really great idea (at the time, but then he was drunk, so). He pat her cheek teasingly. “I got no reason to be jealous if I spend more time with him than you do. Hah!”

“Awww, you loooove him!” Mira teased, this time poking with two hands.

“No, shit, hey-! Stop!”

Wait, what happened to Evergreen and Bix-… oh, they were ganging up on Elfman now, trying to get him to reenact a scene. That was funny.

Mira didn’t stop teasing Laxus though, and he was trying to bat her hands away. “Tell him you loooooove him, c’mon!”

Laxus was clearly annoyed by the poking, and how being drunk makes him suck at avoiding her prodding fingers, but he was trying too hard not to laugh. “Shut up, he’s your boyfriend! Hey— HEY! Not there, fuck, that tickles—”

“I’ll be your beard!” Mira said, this time her hands flew to either side of Laxus’s face to cup his cheeks. “Don’t be afraid! I’ll protect you!”

They stared at each other until Laxus did the same to her, reaching out to her face, but instead of cupping her cheeks, he pinched them. Then he pulled.

Mira narrowed her eyes, and pinched his cheeks in return.

That was how Freed found them.

“What’s happening here?” he asked, trying to keep himself from laughing as he sat on Mira’s other side.

“Freed!” Mira said, quickly squirming away from Laxus to glomp at Freed. “My boyfriend!”

“Yes, Mira. I’m your boyfriend.” Freed laughed, hugging her back.

Mira giggled. “Laxus wants you to be his boyfriend too, Freed.”

Freed pat her head, smiling and nodding. “I’m sure he does, Mira.”

“Everyone wants you to be their boyfriend.” she mumbled lazily against his shoulder. “That’s why I’m soooo lucky.” Then there were giggles. From both of them. And Ever and Bixlow. A lot of giggles. Elfman looked at them, at a loss.

Laxus watched them groggily before shaking his head. “Holy shit, we’re all sleeping over here tonight.”

The fourth time, Mira was only teasing, but also kind of hoping.

The Raijinshuu went to The Strauss’ after band practice during their winter break, tired and worn but happy because they had a good session. Mira served them their drinks without prompting — she knew them well enough.

They thanked her with warm smiles, Mira smiling back with pride, because they always made her feel like there’s nothing better after practice than to come drop by her bar and drink what she prepared for them.

Evergreen was in a good mood when she excused herself to find Elfman. Bixlow was telling Mira how good their session was. They have three new songs — ‘THREE, MIRA-CHAN! AND THEY’RE AMAZING!’ and because he was so enthusiastic, she almost didn’t notice Freed and Laxus huddled closely together, both hunched at something between them…

She tilted her head to see that the two were bickering at how Laxus couldn’t unwrap a strip of band-aid by himself. The paper wrapping wasn’t giving way for the band-aid strip no matter how much Laxus tried to pry it open. Freed kept trying to help him, but Laxus kept pulling away.

“Hey, everything okay?” Mira asked.

“Yup.” they both answered.

“Laxus, come on, I’ll do it—”

“No, I can do this.”

“Give it here.” Mira volunteered.

“Nope, this thing is challenging me.” Laxus said. “I ain’t gonna lose.”

“You’re petty sometimes, you know that?” Freed chuckled as he watched the blonde continue to struggle with the task. Laxus scowled at him and Freed simply took a sip from the hot chocolate Mira served him.

Mira giggled at the exchange. “What’s it for?”

“I broke a string at practice.” Freed said, lifting a hand — his ring finger had a messy, stained and dirty band-aid on it. “Laxus is the one with the band-aids, and he won’t let me patch myself up, or replace the band-aid myself.”

“Shut up.” Laxus grumbled, now biting his tongue in concentration.

Freed sighed. “You’re just angry because you can’t unwrap them.”

“I’ll show you I can.”

“Like I said. Petty.”

Bixlow chimed in then. “Hey, Laxus — the drum line for the last verse on that last song we did? Can I switch it up? I thought of something cool to put in.”

As usual, Bixlow’s train of thought had strayed at some point during the conversation. They were used to it by now, though, and were more flexible.

Laxus looked at the drummer, thinking. As he did this, he finally managed to unwrap the offending band-aid strip. He looked down at it and then smirked at Freed. “See? I can do it.”

Freed spared him a smile and just shook his head in resignation as Laxus grabbed his hand and started removing the dirty band-aid.

“Yo, father of mine, whatcha think? ’Bout what I said?” Bixlow followed up.

Laxus shrugged as he wrapped the new band-aid neatly around Freed’s finger. “I don’t know. It’s fine, probably. Ask your mother. He arranged it.”

Freed looked at Laxus, face turning red. Mira and Bixlow held back their sniggers, and watched as Laxus looked at Freed expectantly, waiting for a reply. “So?”

Freed blinked and quickly snapped out of his daze, schooling his expression despite the pink blush on his cheeks. “W-What was that?”

“Your wayward child wants to rearrange the drum line for the last verse.”

“Last verse of the last song?” Freed asked faintly as he removed his hand from Laxus’s grip, consciously rubbing the new band-aid on his finger.

“Yeah.” Laxus nodded, picking up his drink and taking a sip. He looked pretty pleased between the hot drink and his victory over the band-aid packaging.

“W-What do you think, Laxus?”

“I said I’m cool if you’re cool.”

Freed nodded distractedly. “Well… I guess it’s fine. Go crazy, Bix.”

Bixlow grinned. “You’re the best parents ever.”

“We’re not.” Laxus retorted with a sly smirk. “How come you turned out like that, then?”

The drummer faked a hurt gasp. “Papa, that’s mean! Mama, did you hear what he said?! About me?! Your darling boy?!”

Freed let out a short laugh before hopping down from his seat. “Papa’s just grumpy about band-aids.”

“Mama says that but he’s no better. Took him five minutes to unwrap the one I gave him earlier, he probably lost like a galon of blood—” Laxus shot back, then got distracted because Freed was walking away. “Hey, where are you going?”

“Washroom.” came the simple reply before Freed disappeared to said destination.

Bixlow stage-whispered. “My parents are the cutest.”

Mira giggled. “They are, aren’t they? Laxus, you didn’t tell me you got married. Why wasn’t I invited?”

“It was a quick ceremony.” The blonde shrugged. “And well, Bixlow needs a mother.”

This time, Mira finally laughed. “Seriously, what happened in University that I didn’t know, when did this Mama-Papa thing start? Did you finally take my advise and dated the best guy in Magnolia?”

“What?” Laxus asked, then snorted. ‘We’re playin’ along ’cause this idiot,’ he tilted his head to indicate Bix happily eating chocolate parfait. “Like, imprinted on us or something. Like some duck.”

“Really? Me?” Bixlow deadpanned. “You’re blaming me for why you’re flirting with Freed.”

“Stupid, I’m not flirting.” Laxus shook his head, holding back a scoff. “It’s fun surprising him, though, he blushes a lot.”

Bixlow and Mira looked at each other, and at that moment they can almost read each other’s minds.

‘Oh God, Mira-chan.’

‘Seriously. This idiot.’

‘He doesn’t know he’s flirting.’


’Well considering it’s been like a decade and he hasn’t noticed…’

‘Help him. HELP THEM.’

‘I can’t, they’re beyond saving.’

They wanted to tell Laxus that ‘NO, Freed blushes because HE LIKES YOU, how can you not see that?’, but then they knew Freed — and Freed will probably kill them if they did that.

“But you agree, right? He’s the best guy in Magnolia.” Mira said, still determined to try.

Laxus shrugged. “Everyone knows that.”

Mira breathed deeply. ’…and you have to be blind not to see he’s head over heels for you.’

The fifth time she asked, Mira knew what the answer would be, but she couldn’t resist asking.

Laxus dropped by the Strauss’ to give Mira a brand new pink umbrella.

“For the one Freed broke in your… adventure.”

“You mean the one he broke kicking major butt in your father’s bar looking for you because you just up and disappeared without so much as a note?”

He looked at her pointedly. “I already said sorry.”

“To me, yes.” she said, taking the umbrella. He took that as her accepting his apology. “And to him?”

Laxus rolled his eyes before he nodded. “Yes. To him, too. We talked it out. Told him everything. He said I didn’t have to, but I did anyway.”

“Good.” Mira nodded. “He missed some classes for that, you know. He looked over your sister and your grandfather in your place.”

“I know.” he sighed. “And I asked him what he wants as some kind of apology token, but he went all sappy and said it’s enough that I promise him it won’t happen again.”

“Did you? Promise?”

Laxus looked at her as if she asked a very stupid question. “Of course I did.”

“That’s good, then.” she finally smiled her usual warm smile. “So you’re okay?”

“Better than ever.” he shrugged. He looked about ready to leave, but after a bit of consideration, he took the seat across her, deciding to stay a while. “Hey, uh… Got a minute? I wanna… uh, ask ’bout something.”

Mira looked at him curiously and nodded. “Yes?”

He was quiet, looking down at the bar top as he tried to put his thoughts into words. “So… I’ve been thinking.”

“Oh, boy.” Mira said with a click of her tongue, and before Laxus could so much as react, she had set a glass between them and filled it with cold water. “Here you go. You need it.”

Laxus chuckled before humoring her and taking a gulp. “Yeah. So, you know I practically live with Freed in his Crocus flat these past few months?”

“Yes. Even before you two got together, right?”

“Yeah. He’s been telling me I can move in if I want to. I keep saying I don’t want his parents to think I’m leeching off them, since they’re the ones paying for it. So we settled for me just crashing with him only if I’m too tired to go home to Magnolia. I’ve been staying more often than usual lately ’cause finals got hectic, but I make up by buying us food.”

Mira nodded. “Mm-hm. Good arrangement. Makes sense.”

“Thing is, Freed’s planning to take up this part-time thing, some kinda paid internship, or whatever job it is, so he can stop relying on his parents. And we’ve got the band, that brings in cash too. If both of those pay off, we can move in together in that flat without asking for rent money from his parents or gramps…”

“You’re planning to move in together? That sounds great!” Mira smiled excitedly.

“Yeah. It sounds great. But, there’s a ‘but’ here — I don’t think I can do that just yet, at least for the coming school year…” he said, pursing his lips.

“Oh.” her disappointed was evident. “Why?”

“I’m planning to hold the fort here on weekdays so Erza can focus on her first year in Fiore U. We both know that gramps ain’t gettin’ any younger… and, well, he just got out of hospital, right? I bet Erza’ll worry ’bout him and think twice ’bout staying in a dorm near her new school. I can tell her she doesn’t have to worry bout it, I can go home everyday to keep gramps company. She can just go home in the weekends when she’s got more time.”

Mira raised an eyebrow. “Okay. So. You and Freed have lived together, done groceries, cooked meals and shared a flat together. All before dating each other. And now that you’re ‘together’ together, you’re moving out. You two really do have this whole thing backwards.”

“That’s the issue.” Laxus said. “You know Freed a whole lot. How d’you think he’ll take it?”

Mira stared at him for a while before letting out a shrug. “It’s kind of a downer that you’ll spend less time together, but I’m pretty sure he’ll be happy about what you’re trying to do.”

“You think so?”

“You don’t think so?”

Laxus considered. “It’s just… I like being together. But I know I gotta do right by gramps and Erza too.”

“Laxus, Freed practically thinks your family is his family too. You should have seen him fuss over Erza while your grandfather was in a coma. He always says Principal Makarov is like a father to him. If you’re doing for something for them, he’s right behind you. A hundred percent.” then she smiled wistfully. “But then again, maybe you should hear this from him, instead of me. Who don’t you just ask him?”

It was Laxus’s turn to nod. “I will. Ask him.” he said, scratching his head awkwardly. “Just wanted to think ’bout how he’ll take it, I guess. But you’re right, he loves ’em a lot, yeah?”

“He loves them and you a lot.”

Laxus groaned. “Maybe I’m the one having second thoughts ’bout it. ’Cause it’s really… nice? Going home to him.”

It tugged at Mira’s heartstrings to hear him saying those words, but she also knew he relied on her to say what he needed her to say. “But sacrifices.”


“It’ll work out, I’m sure. You’ll come up with a good arrangement.”

Another nod. “Yeah.”

“’Cause you love him a lot, too.”

This time, Laxus glanced at her first, before nodding again. “Mm.”

It was simple, it wasn’t even a word. It was a hum. It seemed so anticlimactic, receiving that answer after having repeatedly asked him through all these years. But he had nodded, and his smile was so soft and gentle, and she couldn’t ask for more.

Mira watched him patiently as he finished his drink. He stood up, patted his jacket down and then looked at her with a shrug. “I gotta get going then.”

“Oh? Aren’t you forgetting something?” she asked.

He rolled his eyes when she smiled quirkily while tapping her cheek with her index finger. “I’m not Freed, you know.”

“I know.” she winked, head tilted expectantly as she closed her eyes.

He shook his head before leaning forward to press a kiss to her cheek. “Thanks for the drink.” he said as he adjusted his bag over his shoulder and stepped back.

“Anytime, Dreyar.” Mira chimed happily as he walked away.

He stopped after a few steps, seemingly remembering something. “Um, last one. Ever told me she wants a bangle. Freed said it’s a bracelet.” he looked at her. “Where the hell do I get that?”

Mira laughed. “Go to Jenny’s. Tell her what you need, tell her it’s for Evergreen. She’ll know just what to get.”

He thought about it, then nodded. “Got it. Thanks.”

Mira simply smiled as she watched him leave.

There was no sixth time. Mira never found a reason to ask again.

Chapter Notes:

If any of you need clarifications — The first scene was in Mira’s delinquent days, Raijinshuu was just starting out and Freed just came out to his band. Second scene is sometime after Lisanna’s death, Mira spent her last months of high school hanging out with the Raijinshuu. Third scene sometime in the band’s first year in Fiore U. Fourth scene is held in the band’s second year, should be sometime during the earlier chapters of WAY. Last scene is in between WAY 20 and 21 (Laxus and Makarov chapters, respectively).

I think this was a nice note to end 2016 on.


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