Fairy Tail 523: Gray’s Icy Prison For Zeref, Aconologia’s Entry And Natsu E.N.D?

‘Fairy Tail’ Manga Chapter 521 – Universe One’s Return And Fairies Counterattack

Chapter 523 of immensely popular Japanese manga Fairy Tail continues with the battles that began in chapter 521 and escalated in 522.

[Warning: Manga Fairy Tail Chapter 523 spoilers/recap ahead]

The current chapter of Fairy Tail manga continues with the battle between Zeref and Gray. In the previous chapter, Gray had decided to sacrifice his life to protect the Fairy Tail Guild and Natsu after Zeref had revealed he wanted Mavis’ power. Gray used the “Iced Shield” spell, which renders the opponent immobile, but its power destroys the one who casts the spell.

As expected, Zeref is stunned and asks Gray where he learned the spell. Gray notes that the addition of lost attributes significantly boosts the strength and effectiveness of magic. Unfortunately, besides killing the user of the spell, the magic also erases the very existence of the caster from the world. In other words, the successful usage of the spell will obliterate any and all memories of Gray from the minds and hearts of everyone he has interacted with.

Gray notes that the spell’s destructive power is needed to prevent his guildmates from feeling sorry and sad. As the name of the spell implies, it restricts Zeref’s movements completely. Interestingly, the spell will merely lock Zeref in an icy prison, but won’t kill him. In the previous chapter, Gray mentioned he was aware of the fact that killing Zeref would end Natsu’s life too.

Owing to his unsettlingly calm demeanor, Zeref notes that the prison won’t last for eternity as ice will eventually melt away. Gray responds by saying he is aware of the limitations of the spell, but the time he is buying will grant peace to the land and accord a win to the Fairy Tail Guild.

Right when Gray is about to feel the destructive nature of the Iced Shell spell, he hears a soft concerning voice. The voice emanates from Natsu, who is urging Gray to stop the spell that’s killing him. In his final moments, Gray insists that he wants to proceed, claiming there’s no other way of defeating Zeref and still ensuring that E.N.D. Natsu lives.

Just when the lights start to fade out in Gray’s mind, Natsu slams him on the ground, breaking the flow of the spell. Unfortunately, breaking the spell allows Zeref to destroy the partially generated icy prison that he was being imprisoned in.

As expected, Zeref appears quite pleased at Natsu’s arrival, but the latter is busy tending to his friend. Exhausted from using the deathly spell, Gray is unable to stand. Although compassionate, Natsu can’t restrain himself from admonishing Gray for using the self-destructive spell. Gray responds that he had once attacked Natsu because he got carried away by emotions, and hence, he doesn’t deserve to be in the Fairy Tail Guild anymore.

Listening at the door, Lucy and Happy are as emotional as the two friends, but Gray is primarily concerned about the cruel fact that Zeref’s death will end Natsu too. But Natsu assures Gray that he won’t “kick the bucket so easily.” Zeref on the other hand, cockily notes that winning, dying, or losing doesn’t matter because Natsu will eventually be dead as that is his fate.

Natsu has always been a little cocky, and in his trademark flamboyant fashion, he mocks Zeref and proclaims that he will set the fate on fire. Listening to his smug remarks, Lucy realizes that Natsu is indeed confident of his tall claims. Zeref retorts by mentioning that he has accepted his cursed fate, and accepting one’s fate is destiny.

The scene abruptly shifts to the battlefield, where Erza and Wendy had battled Eileen. In the earlier chapters, Eileen Belserion had killed herself because she couldn’t bring herself to kill her daughter. Nonetheless, before the strange twist, Erza had flown right into a meteorite that Eileen had pulled. Although Erza managed to destroy the meteorite, she was significantly injured by Eileen. In the current chapter, Wendy is seen supporting Erza as the duo stumbles across the battlefield.

In Chapter 520 of Fairy Tail manga, Wendy had noticed an absence of Master Makarov’s scent from the battlefield. Although that implied he was dead, Makarov was being carried by Laxus to Magnolia. It is still not known if Master Makarov is still alive or not, but Wendy feels she might have been able to help her master. Erza consoles Wendy, noting that their master had made up his mind and had consciously used the spell to wipe out a large portion of the enemy.

Chapter 523 of Fairy Tail manga ends with the Acnologia appearing on the battlefield. His entry appears to upset August, who had been battling Gildarts.

What are Acnologia’s intentions? While Gildarts is still battling August, Natsu might soon engage with Zeref. Who will emerge victorious in the battles? Hopefully mangaka Hiro Mashima answers these questions in the upcoming Chapter 524 of Fairy Tail manga titled “Black Future”.

[Featured Image by Hiro Mashima/Fairy Tail Manga/Kodansha]