Official translation from Crunchy, Juvia and Silver’s “chat”.
A lot of people say “not yet,” because there’s technically no undeniable proof for Gray’s feelings. Unfortunately, until there is, no one can say for sure.
That being said, anon, I’m actually inclined to agree with you, and here’s my reasoning as well.
Like you said, Gray is a tsundere. Before the “rejection” happened, I was sure he already liked Juvia, or at least was attracted to her/interested in her romantically (hence the blushing, sweating, and avoiding the question when Erza called him out on his oblivious act during the GMG).
Mashima had been hinting since before the Unison Raid that Juvia and Gray share an “unspoken bond.” So what is this bond that is unspoken? They are friends. Check. That’s not unspoken. They are guild mates. Check. That’s not unspoken. They have romantic feelings for each other… At that point, it WAS unspoken. Juvia hadn’t even confessed yet.
Mashima then followed up this tease with a “synchronized attack of LOVE,” which had both Lyon and Chelia commenting on the romantic implications on what they were doing (Lyon specifically focusing on Gray’s actions towards Juvia giving him this impression). As you said, Gray is tsun, so Mashima likes to give us insight into his feelings via other people’s observations of him. And all of these people always happen to be particularly close to, and know Gray well (Lyon, Erza, Loki, Cana, Mira).
Plus, Gray then DIED for Juvia. Something we have been told again and again, is something you must not do in FT. You live for your friends, you do not die for them. But Gray, without thought, dove in front of Juvia, pushing her out of harm’s way, taking the blow himself. He seemed surprised by this himself. Not just because he was giving his life, but also IMO because of the urgency in which he tried to prevent Juvia’s death. He didn’t want to lose her at any cost.
Say what you will, but Mashima specifically had Gray dying for Juvia for a reason. He didn’t do it for anyone else, we saw him doing it for HER. Words are one thing, actions are another. It is a major deal for Gray to give his life in order to save Juvia’s, and it’s because she means that much to him.
So, at that point, I was sure that Gray liked Juvia back (maybe not as strongly as Juvia loved him (but Juvia’s got quite a high bar to reach haha)), but there was a mutual romantic attraction at the very least, and certainly a very strong bond of some type of love (you don’t die for some one you just kind of like)). Therefore, I assumed that those feelings would continue to increase on Gray’s part as he continued to act the tsun, and Juvia would eventually win him over.
Then the “rejection” happen, and everything went out the window. Maybe he didn’t like her after all? Mashima even said on his twitter that the relationship is currently one-sided (with a tease of who knows what will happen between them in the future).
However, we have since received reconfirmation that Gray is not only tsundere, but also that his rejection was pretty hollow. Is the relationship one-sided at this point? Not from what we’ve now seen in the recent chapters: His willingness to indulge her with the Gray and Juvi-bread. His need to console and comfort her, both with his words and his actions as they rode back to the guild. And his rush to protect her as Silver targeted her.
And most of all, judging by the emphasis and prominence of Juvia’s panel in Gray’s mind before he was about to attempt (or not attempt) Iced Shell, Juvia is clearly very important to him. The way he envisioned her was very endearing. She was saying his name lovingly, and it was her image in his head that made him pause. So, he has overall softened up considerably towards Juvia since the Tartarus arc started, and she has claimed a very big place in his heart.
And that’s not even taking into account the fact that Juvia made both the loss of Ur and Ultear less painful for him in her own special way. That’s an enormous influence to have over Gray who has been hurting for so long. Especially since Juvia’s act of alleviating this pain for him was completely unintentional. She literally is just being herself, and that’s enough for Gray. Imagine if he actually confided in her, and she was to actually try and comfort him?
And that brings us to the very traumatic and cruel set up in the newest chapters that is bound to give Gray another harsh loss, with Juvia being the only one involved and aware. Even Silver mistook Juvia to be “Gray’s woman,” and as others have said, he likely garnered this impression because he watched the GMG and saw Gray and Juvia’s interactions. Again, someone who knows Gray very well, was left with the impression of Gray liking Juvia ROMANTICALLY.
In my opinion, and especially if we take the hollowness of the rejection into account, he does indeed have mutual feelings of love for her. Does he love her as much as she loves him? Again, that’s what we’re building up to. Gray has a lot of emotional baggage, as well as barriers that need to be overcome and knocked down, in order for him to be comfortable not only being honest about his feelings, but entering into this type of relationship with her. Mashima is showing us that those big blockades of ice around his heart are slowly but surely being melted away by Juvia, and he’s letting her do so.
So, yes anon, they are not canon, but I agree that they are certainly making their way to it at a pretty steady pace, and that Gray’s feelings at this point seem to easily be more than just friendship. ^__~
Perfect, as always I totally agree with you. And I have to say that one of the things I really enjoy with this couple is its slow progression, see Gray’s feelings growing gradually. It’s so realistic !
LEAVE. GRAY. ALONE.
Before I start this rant I would like to point out that I am not a Gruvia shipper. I’ve simply been noticing that many people are mad at Gray for not showing Juvia the love she deserves or the respect she deserves. This made me angry. (Warning: Long post)
I do understand that some Juvia lovers would be upset at Gray’s distant and cold behavior with her. But Gray doesn’t behave the way he does because he’s a bad character or a jerk. From what we’ve learned of Gray’s character, he is driven by tragedy. He’s lost many of the people who’s cared for him, because they sacrificed themselves for his sake and survival. Due to that, I’d describe him as emotionally private (although he’s psychically private.) Though he cares about his comrades, he doesn’t let them get too close. He seems to only end up appreciating something/someone when it’s violently ripped from him. Like when Ur was killed, but seemed to only realize how much she meant to him, leaving Gray alone with Lyon blaming him for their mentor’s death.
The emotional constipation he experiences in present day is a result of his past, leaving him unable to become emotionally attached. Now when Juvia comes along with her loving and sometimes over-bearing personality, Gray isn’t sure how to handle all of it. He warmly welcomes her into the guild, and sees her strictly as a guild member and comrade. We can tell as the show progresses that Gray is inching into becoming closer to Juvia, although he isn’t amused by her fangirl antics, which isn’t surprising.
Now taking Gray’s history and personality into consideration, you can see how he is timid to accept Juvia’s love. Deep down, Gray understands Juvia’s feelings for him, but doesn’t understand his own. Given what he’s done for her, Gray’s affection for Juvia is there, but he simply doesn’t show it in the same way Juvia does.
I for one am glad that a pairing doesn’t fall in love at first sight. A realistic love would take time to develop and go through hard-ships. Gray and Juvia started off tense and Gray simply wanted no relationship out of it. But as the series goes on and the more they go through together, you can see him accepting her into his shell. Again, I am not a Gruvia shipper, but I think that Gray deserves and needs that love that Juvia has to offer. Although it takes him time to realize it and accept it (which he has yet to do), Gray is in desperate need of her love whether he realizes it or not.Now, for those who constantly tear on Gray for being a jerk to Juvia, you’ve got to realize that’s just NOT who Gray is. He is loyal and kind, but he doesn’t except love very well. If anything, he assumes Juvia deserves better than himself, which is not true. They’re just different personalities, but he needs her more than he realizes.If anything, the Gruvia ship has a lot going for it right now. Although all the things that COULD have happened, it’s still got a large fanbase and is practically canon (much to my sadness.) Take a look at those who ship LucyxGray. Take a look at GrayxErza (AKA me.) Those are ships that will most likely never sail (Again, much to my sadness)Gray obviously shares feelings for Juvia, just isn’t sure how to show it outwardly. And Juvia, despite her antics, doesn’t seem to let that damper her spirit. She’s always gone back to Gray despite the things he had said and done, and she seems to be working her way through.So, leave Gray alone and realize that his façade and seemingly cold personality has a reason and is not just Gray being a jerk and ignoring Juvia. To me, Gray and Juvia are the most TRUE pairing (other than NaLu) in the show, even though I’m not a shipper of them.
Great post. I totally agree with your point of view about Gray (I have exactly the same perception of him and his behavior) and I appreciate your objectivity about Gray and Juvia’s relationship.
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So, I reached 2,000 followers ! O_O
OMG, thank you to all my followers, and, since my blog is mainly focused on Gruvia and Juvia, thank you to all Gruvia shippers and Juvia fans who are following and enduring me ! I’m happy to share all the Gruvia feels with you, good and bad moments (even though there are only good moments currently, also thank you Mashima). I hope there will be another good things in the future (i have no doubt ^^).
As I said when I reached 1,000 followers, when I joined tumblr, I didn’t think I would have so many followers !
So, once again, thank you ! I love you all ♥