Natsu and the crew suddenly encountered a disruption of dimensions. Lucy lost some of her celestial keys during the incident. To retrieve the keys, all of them jumped into the crack of disruption and arrived into the realm.
To chase after a key, Gajeel and Panther Lily leapt into the crack, which brought them to the realm. Free falling in the mid air, Gajeel saw the key dropping into the ruins. He cast the spell “Iron Dragon’s Club”, turning his arm into a long steel club to stick into the ruins for landing. But a forcefield repelled him once he got close.
Gajeel: What the heck?
Panther Lily: Be careful. This power is unusual.
Gajeel: I’ll find a way in!
Gajeel was planning to punch his way in by breaking the wall. Right at the moment, Hertz rushed in to stop him.
Hertz: You fool! Stop what you’re doing!
Gajeel: Where did this trash come from? Stay outta my way!
Hertz: The ruins contain our ancient history and civilizations. Don’t you dare destroy it!
Gajeel: Who said I was destroying the ruins? I was just trying to get in and find my lost item. But there’s a forcefield outside. I can’t even get close!
After hearing Gajeel out, Hertz attempted to approach the ruins. Just like what Gajeel said, his metal feet was repelled once he took a step forward.
Hertz: I misunderstood you…But clearly breaking in by force isn’t the solution. Let’s work together to find a way in.
Hertz was searching for the entrance with his compass, but the pointer could’t point the right direction as it kept spinning.
Panther Lily: Is your compass broken?
Hertz: Broken? No, it was working fine earlier.
Gajeel: It should be the forcefield…Could be it!
Gajeel threw a stone at the ruins, and it rolled to the wall side instead of getting repelled; Then he covered his whole body in steel scales and punched towards the wall with his iron fist. As expected, a force repelled him like before.
Gajeel: I knew it. The ruins are covered by some kind of magnetic field.
Hertz: Magnetic? Is it from the Metal Bugs?
Gajeel: Metal Bugs…Humph, I saw you! Eat my punches you trash!
Gajeel removed his steel form, approaching the ruins. This time he was not affected by the magnetic field, so his punch successfully hit the wall. Screams of pain were given out, and 10 Metal Bugs finally revealed from their hiding forms.
Hertz: They’re applying force on the ruins. I can’t sit back and let them crush it!
Gajeel: I'm gonna put 'em down at once. Iron Dragon's Lance: Demon Logs!!
As Gajeel used the Iron Dragon Slayer Magic, light beams wrapped his arms then turned them into a large spearhead. He struck at the Metal Bugs with a lightning speed.
Hertz: Their formation is collapsing—— No, don’t let them run into the ruins!
Hertz shot the bugs with arrows and paralyzed some of them; Panther Lily also attacked them with his sword, but some of the bugs could still make their escaping. With the disappearance of the forcefield, Gajeel and the others chased them into the ruins.
Gajeel: Those bugs moved fast. I’ve lost track of them already.
Hertz: But the vibe here is unusual. I feel like we’re being watched… Huh? What’s that shining thingy?
Gajeel: “That’s… Lucy’s key!”
Gajeel: That’s the thing I’m looking for. Ouch——
Panther Lily: Gajeel! Ouch——
Hertz: What happened? Ouch——
A strong force sucked Gajeel down on the ground suddenly when he was going to pick the key up. Panther Lily and Hertz were also pinned down as they went to check on him. Gajeel forced himself up, finding a much bigger Metal Bug in front of him. The enormous body was staying close to the key, preying on them.
Gajeel: What are you doing, you weaklings! I’ m gonna finish you!
Giant Metal Bug fired an energy wave and hit them hard.
Gajeel: Darn it! How annoying! I can’t even move a single inch. I need more metals to replenish my strength…
Panther Lily: All I can see are only sand and stones here!
Hertz: If you need metals…Take my arrows!
Hertz pulled the maximum effort to get up and handed the arrows to Gajeel. As soon as Gajeel got them, he ate the metals as if they were some sort of savouries. The jacked-up Gajeel stood up despite the powerful forcefield, with a terrifying aura.
Gajeel: Die, you trash! Iron Dragon’s——ROAR!
Gajeel was covered in steel scales, blasting a silver tornado with metal chips at the giant bug. It shielded itself with the tail, but the attack was too powerful that even the tail was cut off. Having taken a critical hit, the giant bug fell down and turned back into a bunch of normal bugs.
With the corruption of the Metal Bugs, the pillars holding the ruins started falling apart, and the walls were cracking. Gajeel hurried to pick up Lucy’s key then rushed towards the exit with Panther Lily, but he stopped when he saw Hertz remain at the spot.
Gajeel: Hey, why don't you go?
Hertz: I can’t leave the ruins. I need to stop it from collapsing! Go!
Hertz disregarded the danger and transfered the elemental power to fix the ruins. When a falling pillar was close to hitting Hertz, Gajeel supported the building with Iron Dragon’s Club, and Panther Lily also helped kick away the falling rocks.
Hertz: I thought… you were gone?
Gajeel: Humph, I’ll leave when you’re done repairing. This is returning the favour of the arrows.
With the help of Gajeel and Panther Lily, Hertz stopped the ruins from collapsing.
Hertz: It’s stable now, but it still takes time to repair. I’m staying here until the work is done.
After saying goodbye to Hertz, Gajeel and Panther Lily found the entrance for the crack of disruption near the ruins. They hurried the steps with Lucy’s key secured.