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While in the middle of their battle, Natsu gets eaten whole by Fukuro using his Capture, with Fukuro stating that he can digest the Magic of those he has eaten. Happy attempts to fly in and save Natsu, but he is knocked out by Fukuro's Fire Ho Ho Hou, which is derived from Natsu's Fire Dragon Slayer Magic. This surprises both Happy and Simon as they realize that Fukuro is absorbing Natsu's powers.
Meanwhile, after a do-over vote, the Magic Council decides to fire Etherion upon the Tower of Heaven in order to destroy the R-System and prevent the resurrection of "Zeref". Yajima, the only member of the nine councilors who voted against the firing, confronts Siegrain, the one who proposed the idea of using Etherion, and questions him about taking full responsibility for the lives that will be lost should Etherion be used to annihilate the Tower of Heaven, especially the life of his "twin brother", Jellal. Siegrain replies that he will know the answer soon enough.
Concurrently, Gray races through the Tower to Heaven after Shô, who trapped Erza in his Magic Cards and ran off to defeat Jellal himself. As he is running, he has a flashback from eight years ago about when Erza first arrived in Fairy Tail, remembering that he was complaining to Cana about the fortune reading she gave him when a girl in tattered clothes and an eye patch came in the guild, muttering that that place was the guild Grandpa Rob told her about. When the flashback ends, Gray finds an injured Simon and Happy in front of a large bird man who looks like an owl.
Fukuro is about to deliver a finishing blow to Happy when Gray comes in and saves him from the bird man. Gray yells at Simon, stating that he should have gone after Shô and Erza, though Simon retorts that they were doing just that when they got held up by Fukuro. Gray states that he doesn't think anyone could beat Erza when she's serious, but that she's defenseless inside Shô's card and needs to be helped. Simon replies that they were wrong to let Shô know everything about the Tower of Heaven and Jellal all at once, and that he didn't think the Card Mage would be so reckless; Happy interrupts the two and pleads for Gray to save Natsu, as he is still being digested by Fukuro. Gray calls Natsu a flaming idiot as Fukuro tells him that within ten minutes, Salamander's body will be reduced to nothing, and, when that happens, Natsu's powers will be his.
Storming forward, Gray attacks Fukuro with Ice-Make: Lance and Fukuro counters with Natsu's Fire Dragon's Roar. This catches Gray off-guard, as his ice is melted and he is engulfed in flames. Fukuro comments that if Gray is Salamander's friend, then he should know how strong Salamander's flames are, and not underestimate them. While surrounded by flames, Gray has another flashback.
Gray recalls the day in the guild when Cana expressed her worry about the young Erza, who always seemed to be alone and constantly in armor. Concerned, Cana questioned if Gray knew anything about the girl, though Gray, unimpressed with Erza, ignored Cana's worries, instead deciding he would confront Erza face-to-face and demand her attention. Stomping to Erza's table in the guild hall, the young Gray called out to her, though a silent Erza merely ignored him, irking Gray and causing him to kick her table over, commenting that a Mage guild was no place for people wearing armor. Angered herself, the young Erza ferociously retorted that Mage Guilds are also not places for people with no clothes, and asked if Gray was a member of a perverts guild. Blushing deeply as the guild burst into laughter at his expense, Gray angrily stormed off.
Gray's flashback ends and he unleashes a large amount of Magic Power that—much to Fukuro's shock—freeze the flames surrounding him. Gray taunts Fukuro, saying that he can't call such weak flames Natsu's, and that he's just a poser. Fukuro is impressed by Gray's Magic Power and tries his Capture on him by snatching Gray up in his huge mouth; however, Gray quickly freezes the bird's beak solid and slips out, yelling that he doesn't have time to be messing around, as they have to catch up to Erza.
Having yet another flashback to his childhood, Gray recalls how he was always beat up by Erza when they were kids, and how Macao and Wakaba used to make fun of him, saying that he must have a crush on Erza; the young Gray responded by declaring that he wouldn't accept a brat like Erza as part of the guild. Gray also remembers finding Erza all alone, sitting by the riverbank. He was about to approach her and challenge her to another match, but stopped when he saw her crying. He asked her why she was always alone and she replied that she liked being alone and that she was uncomfortable around other people. He then asked her why she was crying all alone and this question surprised Erza, even more so when Gray sat next to her on the riverbank and accompanied her for a while.
Fukuro's fire and Gray's ice clash as they embed their elements into their assaults. Fukuro tosses Gray away in their exchange of punches but Gray regains his balance, casting Ice Blade: Seven Slice Dance to form sharp blades of ice on his arms and quickly launching himself at Fukuro to rapidly slashes him seven times. Watching as Fukuro falls to the ground and spits Natsu up, Gray comments aloud that Erza was always alone, and that she has to be with Fairy Tail so that she doesn't cry any more.
As Natsu lies unconscious, freed from being digested by Fukuro, Simon openly exclaims that he is impressed with Gray and states that he is much more powerful than the information he gathered suggested. Gray, tired and injured, insists that they must go and find Erza, and Simon realizes that Gray's feelings for Erza, his friend, are what fuels his Magic to greater heights. Having seen the lengths Erza's friends and willing to go for her happiness, the man comments that Erza found herself a nice guild.
Meanwhile, the Magic Council prepares to fire Etherion.
|Welcome to the|
Tower of Heaven Fights
|Team Natsu vs. Team Jellal • Natsu Dragneel, Lucy Heartfilia, Gray Fullbuster & Juvia Lockser vs. Tower of Heaven Guards • Natsu Dragneel & Happy vs. Wally Buchanan & Millianna|
|Heaven's Game Fights||Natsu Dragneel & Simon vs. Fukuro • Lucy Heartfilia & Juvia Lockser vs. Vidaldus Taka • Gray Fullbuster vs. Fukuro • Erza Scarlet & Shô vs. Ikaruga • Erza Scarlet vs. Jellal Fernandes • Natsu Dragneel vs. Jellal Fernandes|