Chapter Twenty-six: You're the one that I need.

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~Juvia Lockser~

Juvia held her arms tightly with her knees drawn to her chest as she listened to the quiet outside. Gajeel and Natsu where snoring, both exhausted after the incident before. Levy and Gray were both silent as were Yuri and Diachi though Yuri was sniffing. Juvia's eyes latched on the wall farthest from her position against the door, tracing the corner for about the fiftieth time as her fingers clutched her arms. She wanted to speak, she wanted to cry she wanted to do something but she just sat there, staring at the wall. Juvia wondered if Lucy was alright which made her mind wander to Natsu-how was he feeling about this entire thing? Juvia knew he was worried about Lucy but...what could he do?

What could any of them do?

Juvia began to think of Gray and her fingers traveled to her lips, touching them slightly as her face went bright red.

She had actually kissed Gray! Sure it was to save his life but still!

Turning her head back towards the door, she sighed, embracing her knees and drew circles on her arms with her pointer fingers. The cell was getting dark, Juvia taking it as night time falling, and the girl began to feel drowsy even though she was scared to fall asleep. For some reason, the blue haired girl began to think of her times with Gray-she often did that while upset-and her fingers tightened even harder around her arms.

She needed to talk to him. She needed to set everything straight.

"Ahno, Gray-sama?" Juvia said in a quiet voice, tilting her head back against the door. Gaining no reply, she tried again. "Gray-sama?"

"What is it, Juvia?" Gray asked from his cell not to far from her own.

"Juvia's sorry for yelling at you." She said, looking at the wall as she dropped her hands to the iron floor beneath her. "Juvia's sorry for telling you that she hates you. Juvia doesn't hate Gray-sama. She never has." Juvia's fingers tightened into fists against the cold, hard ground as her throat closed - no she wouldn't cry. She refused to cry now. "Juvia...Juvia...." Juvia's eyes squeezed shut as she clenched her hands even harder, her fingernails digging divots into the skin of her palm. "Juvia is so in love with Gray-sama that she would never be able to hate Gray-sama." She knew then that the others were listening because the snoring had halted and she could hear Gajeel's snort when she uttered those words.

She didn't care.

"Juvia knows that we've had our troubles in the past. Juvia knows she can be annoying and she is forgetful. But Juvia's love..." She placed one of her hands over her heart with a small smile. "Juvia's love is true, Gray-sama. Gray-sama saved Juvia from the rain. Gray-sama...he's Juvia's sunshine and Juvia loves you more than anything. She really does."

The cell block lapsed into silence and Juvia hung her head, her cheeks warming as a deep blush covered her cheeks. She opened her mouth to speak.

"I know how you feel Juvia." Gray said and her shoulders pricked slightly. "I really do."

"Gray-sama..." Juvia murmured, raising her head.

"For the longest time now," Gray continued. "You've been really precious to me. Ever since we met, I've always had this overwhelming sense that I needed to protect you. Like when you fell from the building, I couldn't let myself watch you fall. Honestly, if you had been anyone else, I may have let you fall." A small smile formed on Juvia's lips as she drew her knees to her chest. "But you...every crazy, perverted, idiotic and dangerous thing you did I think just drew me towards you. The way you were when you hurt your leg on Tenroujima, when you changed your look, the way you giggle, or even how you call me 'Gray-sama' they all just prove to me how much you care." Gray went quiet then and Juvia held her knees tightly. "When I saved you from that dragon thing after the Grand Magic Games...do you know how scared I was? I was so scared I was going to loose someone important to me. Or even when Ultear tried to kill you back on Tenroujima, I can still remember how it felt to hold you, to have you that close to me, to have you almost killed before my eyes. I realize now it's because I love you." Juvia's eyes went wide as they stared at the wall in front of her and tears leaked down her cheeks as her fingers tightened around her legs. "You're the one that I need. The one that I want. The one I was scared to realize I needed. But I do. I do need you, Juvia. I need you right here. Right next to me. In my arms. Against me just so I know I haven't been talking to thin air this entire time."

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