History of Master Zeref - first chapter
131 days ago
Zeref is said to have been the darkest, most evil Mage in the history of the Magic World, mastering the Black Arts and creating many Demons, some of which still wreak havoc in the present.
In the modern era, Zeref seeks to isolate himself and is very calm, sincere, and conflicted. He wishes to die to atone for all the sins he has committed, and may commit in the future. He shows concern for others when he warns them not to come near him, knowing that they would die if they did. He is also somewhat emotionally fragile, as when he realizes that Natsu is not ready to kill him yet, he breaks down in tears.Zeref often kills with no prior incentive or knowledge.
In spite of all this, Zeref is very vindictive, and will punish those who he believes to be evil. This was shown when he ruthlessly killed Hades, whom he thinks has committed a number of unforgivable sins. As a result of his immortal life, Zeref has developed a misanthropic loathing for humanity and its repeated idiosyncrasies of hatred, evil, and conflict.
Nevertheless, Zeref is also shown to be a man of the people as the Emperor of Alvarez, and is shown to display good will and friendliness towards his generals and subjects, which is also reflected in their opinion of him, sincerely cheering and welcoming him as he returns to the capital after a long absence. Zeref also compared running the Empire akin to playing a strategy game, making the Curse of Contradictions´ symptoms go away while at it, because the people he commands, he treats merely as pawns.
Orphaned after Dragons killed his parents and his little brother, Natsu, an extremely young Zeref became a student at the Mildian Magic Academy, where he researched the connections between life, death and Magic to revive his brother. After creating things such as the R-System and the Eclipse Gate, he was expelled from the academy for breaching the sacred teachings of Ankhseram, however he was cursed by Ankhseram and then killed everyone around him with his newfound, unwanted Curse of Contradiction. After this, Zeref wished to die and wandered around, creating the Etherious in the hopes that they would kill him, but instead turned to reviving his dead brother, having preserved his body, as an Etherious, thus fulfilling his goal of bringing his brother back and creating something that could kill him: E.N.D.; Etherious Natsu Dragneel.
One day while out gathering herbs, Zeref stumbled across the Fire Dragon King Igneel, who unlike many other Dragons at the time was not opposed to associating with humans, and after acquainting with one another, the Dragon agreed to teach Natsu Dragon Slayer Magic and raise him. Zeref then became aware of the plan hatched by Igneel, Metalicana, Grandeeney, Weisslogia and Skiadrum to use the Dragon Soul Technique to seal their damaged souls inside young Dragon Slayers that they have raised and travel to the future, where the Ethernano-dense air would help them recover enough to kill Acnologia. Zeref helped them do so, and had the Celestial Spirit MageAnna Heartfilia open the Eclipse Gate to the future, while also four hundred years later having Layla Heartfilia open another version of the Gate to connect the two time periods, allowing the Dragon Slayers chosen (Natsu, Gajeel, Wendy, Sting and Rogue) to arrive in the future on July 7, X777.
Ultimately, the true tale of events became distorted with time, resulting in legends surrounding the now-dubbed Black Wizard. The stories stated that at some point in the distant past, around 400 years ago, Zeref witnessed the deaths of many people. Around this time, he also became cursed, and unintentionally took the lives of all those around him. Zeref was described as having alighted in an ancient land, mastered Black Magic, given birth to tens of thousands of Demons, and thrown the world into chaos.
At least a century ago, Zeref founded what later shaped itself to become the Alvarez Empire, which united 730 guilds of Alakitasia by martial force, but he rarely dabbles in politics unless necessary, preferring to stay beyond the capital, or even the empire itself, while his ministers and generals do the majority of the work.
Sometime later, Zeref is found taking a bath in Western Forest near Magnolia by Mavis Vermilion. He was surprised that someone would want to leave, noting it was a "bad habit" of his own, and unwillingly used his Magic, which robbed the forest of its life force, which Mavis quickly recognized as Ankhseram Black Magic. Zeref was surprised and commended Mavis´ knowledge, and told her to not feel bad for him. Nevertheless, he felt joy about his conversation with the girl, but was also worried about himself unwittingly killing her, which he never wanted to do to anyone. Mavis then cast an illusion of wildlife, which initially startled Zeref, because of his lack of control over his powers, but after Mavis explained to him the nature of her Magic, he was happy at the notion and thanked her sincerely. After this, Zeref agreed to teach Mavis and her companions Magic (while keeping a safe distance much to Warrod´s chagrin), having noted to Precht in particular that he had an affinity for several different kinds of Magic. After having taught them Magic, Zeref left to seclude himself once more, happy that he made friends.
Six years later, in X696, Zeref happened upon Mavis one more time. In spite of his attempts to remind the girl of his Curse, she ran to Zeref to give him a hug, thanking him for what he had done for them. Zeref then revealed his true identity, shocking Mavis, however, she was unable to believe the rumors surrounding the Black Wizard´s name. After a short discussion, Zeref learnt that Mavis had used Law, soon realizing that she had stopped growing. He identified that as the Curse of Ankhseram and when Mavis argued against this, Zeref noted that there had been no casualties yet because of the war era. As Mavis ran away, in tears, Zeref thought to himself that she had the potential to "walk alongside him".
Zeref then undertook a search for Mavis; after one year he found her alone and starving, but remarked that no matter what she did, she would not die. He was then begged to kill her, but refused on the grounds that he couldn´t even if he wanted to. He explained that in the beginning, immortality drove him mad and that even now he wants to die, but tried to comfort her by saying that they have time to do whatever they feel, citing his creation of the Etherious to kill himself and his building of a nation as ways to pass time. He went even further, saying that over in his nation, he is the emperor and Ankhseram´s Curse doesn´t affect anyone there, as they are nothing more than pawns to him; Mavis questioned his reason to build a nation, and he explained that it´s preparation for battle, which he stated he hates, though he added that he only lives to die and that he wants to see his brother, though such thoughts began to hurt his head. Zeref was then embraced by Mavis, finding solace in her ability to understand him and her words about trying to break the Curse of Contradiction. He then began to shed tears when exclaimed that they would find a way together, and realizing that he fell in love with Mavis, he kissed her, but Ankhseram´s Curse stole away just about all of Mavis´ life force while she was in his arms.
Zeref then brought Mavis back to Magnolia and threw her on the ground in front of the onlooking Precht, claiming that he only came to return her body. Over the top of Precht´s exclamation, Zeref merely stated that Mavis, whom he referred to as a "thing", no longer moved, even adding to Precht´s worry by saying that she will never wake up. As he walked away and bade her goodnight, Precht asked who he was, and he answered that he was the Black Wizard Zeref. He then rebutted his statement, claiming that if Mavis was a fairy, then he was a spriggan. Broken, Zeref resolved to simply go back to Alakitasia to continue building his empire, where none of those that he considers pawns will die to him, regretting that he ever fell in love. Zeref then eventually learned of Mavis´ non-living yet non-dead state that created Eternal Magic—Fairy Heart—and resolved to acquire it for his own purposes.
In the course of his travels following this event, Zeref roamed a mountain range and stumbled upon a Dragon Irene. Thinking of her as rare initially, Zeref quickly realized that she was actually human and, in the blink of an eye, enchanted her back to her original form. In response to her elation, Zeref informed her that the change was aesthetic only, and that for all intents and purposes, she still physiologically remained a Dragon.
Some time later, during one of his stays in Vistarion, Zeref revealed to Invel what he had been carrying inside the pendant around his neck: a picture of Natsu and himself during their childhood days. Some time after that, however, Zeref eventually found himself on the secluded Tenrou Island, hoping to stay completely cut off from humanity.
Tenrou Island arc
On Tenrou island, Zeref lays peacefully, asleep, on the ground. When night descends, he is attacked by a pack of wolves. Their efforts to kill the Dark Mage are, however, in vain, as he releases a wave of Magic, killing not only the wolves, but much of the surrounding ecosystem. Zeref then apologizes and wallows in misery, wishing to meet Natsu soon. Later, Carla has a vision, and sees that Zeref will somehow be involved in the S-Class Mage Promotion Trial.
During the trial, he runs into Elfman and Evergreen and warns them to stay away from him, as his Magic is beginning to run rampant. However, when the wave is released, Natsu arrives and saves his fellow comrades from the deathly black wave. Zeref is then shocked to see his brother Natsu, saying that he has "grown", but Natsu says that he doesn´t recognize the Dark Mage. When he tells the Fairy Tail Mages that he has been expecting Natsu´s arrival, Natsu misinterprets the statement as a declaration of challenge and rushes towards Zeref, landing a fierce blow to his face.
Zeref is unfazed by the punch and stands up, disappointed that Natsu is not ready to kill him, causing him to shed tears of frustration. Zeref then unintentionally releases another wave of his Magic, but Natsu´s scarf absorbs the blast, saving the lives of everyone present. Zeref then proceeds to make his escape, however, Grimoire Heart is now aware of his presence, and seeks to hunt him down. Zeref then rests next to a tree and claims that the world continues to reject him, before crying once more.
Later, Zeref is stated to be in a "state of slumber". Shortly thereafter, the battle between Fairy Tail and Grimoire Heart begins, causing Zeref to wonder if another war is going to take place.
He then crosses paths with Ultear, and comments how sad it is for Grimoire Heart to have managed to anger him. After Zeref asks Ultear if it is power they want, Ultear claims that she wants his entire existence, but Zeref states that he has no intention of assisting them or having anything to do with those in the current era, and that he doesn´t want to witness wars or the death of innocent people. Zeref then tells Ultear to stop the attack and leave the island at once, repeating that he is angry, visibly terrifying her with his power.Rustyrose states to Elfman and Evergreen that when they acquire Zeref the current Magic world will end and a new one will begin, an Ultimate Magic World, where those that don´t possess Magic will suffer and die; the other Grimoire Heart members say similar things. Zeref himself, however, is powerless against Ultear in his sleeping state and is defeated by her, being warned to not underestimate her as she is the eldest of the Seven Kin of Purgatory. Ultear then says that they have the key which will awaken him; Zeref begs Ultear to stop, but she ignores him and revels in her victory. As Zeref lies unconscious, Ultear holds onto him tightly, stating that he now belongs to her and that he will become the King of the Ultimate Magic World.
While he is still unconscious, he is seen being dragged around by Ultear, and later by Meredy, who ends up heading to the "escape point". While on their way there, they are chased by a persistent Juvia, who received orders from Gray to keep track of Zeref. The trio are later confronted by Zancrow, who attacks the two girls, and tries to take Zeref back to the airship. Zeref, at this point, stirs, speaking one word ("Acnologia"), and awakes. Zeref and Zancrow then lock eyes, and Zeref releases a wave of Magic at the Grimoire Heart Mage, instantly killing him, and knocking out Meredy and Juvia.
After Zeref casts his spell, he regains control of himself and apologizes to