Title: “Twelve Days of Christmas.”
Warnings: Roy/Ed. Implied Al/Winry and implied one-sided Ed/Winry.
Characters: (start of, or going into) Roy/Ed, Al, Winry (maybe tentative Al/Winry?) [Hawkeye, Hughes and Havok optional]
Location: Various residencies and places in Central City.
Premise: Ed is determined to make the Colonel take time out from trying to become Fuhrer and celebrate the Christmas holiday, even if it kills him. Or Roy. Or both of them. Which it most likely will.
*sigh* I had this idea for a funny story with pirate!Roy, but then I realized that my funny story… made no sense because post-anime Roy/Ed is, like, impossible. Grrr. Al has his body back, but that’s a just because thing.
I also came into this weird quandary where I reasoned that if Roy was going to think of Ed by his first name, wouldn’t he think of his staff by their first names? Yeah, that bugged me. Meh.
Twelve Days of Christmas.
“Why are you here?” asks Roy, without looking up from his desk, by which he means, of course it’s late and a holiday, so why are you at the office?
He shrugs. “Because.”
“That’s not an answer, Fullmetal,” he says, busy cramming in an afternoon’s worth of work in the last hour of daylight.
“I’ll tell you why I’m here if you tell me while you’re still around.” Edward smiles as the setting sun casts long, eerie shadows through the window. Ed’s automail glitters like the candles lit through the city, all quiet strength and illumination.
Roy considers this. “I’ve been seeing people all day,” he says, finally.
Ed makes a face. “Oh, the ladies’ colonel has been going on dates all day.”
“Not women,” he says carefully. “People. For a reason.” His hand moves briefly to his colonel’s insignia on his coat – unconsciously? – then tries to disguise the movement by brushing a wisp of hair out of his face, but Ed catches the quick falter, pieces it together with the military’s recent crackdowns in Ishbal and at home and Roy’s not-quite-open ambitions. His expression changes.
“Oh,” he says, then shifts the topic to his own inscrutable line of reasoning behind lingering at headquarters. “Winry and Al are being gushy.” Roy can’t tell whether he’s just irritated or whether this has genuinely upset him.
“It’s Alphonse’s first Christmas with his body back, isn’t it?”
“Yeah, but…” He sighs. “I don’t know. I’m going home, colonel. You should, too.”
“Again,” says Roy, tonelessly.
Ed makes a disapproving noise. “It’s too late,” he lectures, “and too dark.” He flips on the lights, flooding the room with quiet gold. “And…”
“And what, Fullmetal?”
“Too Christmas,” he says, “to be working here.”
Ed comes in again the next day, but storms out when Kain offers him eggnog.
“He thought it was milk,” Roy hears Riza explaining. “He’ll calm down soon enough.”
“Whatever happened to holiday cheer and peace on earth and good will to all fellow men?” asks Jean. “It’s Christmas. And it’s not just Fullmetal, it’s--”
“Well,” Riza interjects pointedly, and closes Roy’s door so that he can’t hear the rest of what she’s saying.
The Elrics and Winry Rockbell come in with little Christmas gifts for everyone – some clearly alchemized, some homemade, some, apparently, bought (Havok is given a lighter, and proceeds to set Roy’s paperwork for the day on fire, which is, ultimately, a mixed blessing). Roy receives a small address book with the customary “Mother,” “Doctor,” and “Neighbor” headings crossed out and scrawled over with “Mother’s friend’s daughter,” “Doctor’s secretary,” and “Neighbor’s wife.” He pockets it for later use and watches the three of them. Winry hangs on Alphonse, who grins and blushes at everything she says. Ed trails awkwardly before or after them, a strained smile on his face.
“You’re going to kill yourself with all this work,” says Ed, referring, of course, to the secret meetings, the constant plotting and scheming. “Or get sick or something.”
“There are worse things,” replies Roy.
“Like what?” he laughs.
“A broken heart.”
Ed stares at the desk lamp, lips tight, as he pointedly avoids Roy’s eyes. “Yeah.”
On the sixth day of Christmas, Edward Elric doesn’t come in to the office. Roy finds his absence strangely discomfiting.
“Where were you?”
“Yesterday?” Roy nods. “Walking,” says Ed. “There are a lot of Christmas decorations up – candles, wreaths, trees, the works. I almost hadn’t noticed before them – I’ve been thinking about other stuff, y’know?”
Yes, Roy assures him, he knows.
“And you don’t have any decorations up,” observes Ed as the lights go on.
“It’s been a week,” says Roy. “Did you just notice?”
“I’ve had other stuff on my mind,” grumbles Ed. “There are decorations up everywhere else around headquarters.”
“Fury put them up around here. They’re just a distraction.”
Ed considers this. “I think you need a distraction, colonel.” Roy arches an eyebrow. “It’s a holiday. We could all use a distraction.”
“I’m working on something, Fullmetal.”
He nods solemnly. “That’s why you need one most of all.”
“Meet up with him,” says Ed, handing Roy a crumpled slip of paper. It has a place and a time – tomorrow, Western Square, scrawled in untidy pencil. “He’s from Lior and is interested in… you know. Helping you”
Roy considers the paper in front of him. “Are you sure?”
“Absolutely,” says Ed.
“Hey, colonel,” says Ed, walking up behind Roy. “Whatcha doing?”
Ed laughs. “Well, here I am.”
“What?” asks Ed. “I told you there was someone who wanted to help you.”
Roy simmers quietly, gloves sparking ever so slightly. “You’re not helping,” he says.
Ed stares at him for a moment, cheeks flushed from the cold. “Yes,” he says finally. “Yes I am. You need some time off, colonel. You can put the intriguing off just one day. And besides,” he adds, catching the look on Roy’s face, “you’re already here. You might as well enjoy it for a little bit.”
He smiles, the expression small and slight and entirely happy. “Christmas.” He leans against the lamppost and sighs softly, breath white against the nighttime chill. “Al and I always came here at Christmas,” he tells Roy. “When we were little, we took the train into Central around this time every year. Even before we got his body back, we came. We just looked, mostly – sometimes at the decorations, mostly at the people. They always seem so happy at Christmas, you know? Maybe it’s the lights – ” he gestures to the streetlamps, to the candles nestled in wreaths, to the shop windows, to windowsills where laughing silhouettes are half-visible against sunny light “ – but everything always seems bright.”
“Where’s Al?” asks Roy, tentatively.
“With Winry,” he says tonelessly. His heart isn’t in the words. “It’s Christmas. It’s a time for celebrations.”
“You’re not working,” Ed says, surprised, watching Roy put on his coat. Roy’s papers are all put away; the office is clean and tidy.
“Of course not,” says Roy, stepping out the door into the lights of Amestris. He throws an arm over Ed’s shoulder, dragging the blond with him. “It’s Christmas. It’s a time for celebrations.”
And the office is empty.
Title: “Lust’s Birthday Present” or “Birds In The Bush”
Warnings: Uh… Roy/Ed? Humor. Moofy cameo.
Characters: Ed/Roy, Al, Lust
Location: An old-church/house/park/whatever ((O_o))
Premise: Al is looking for Ed and finds him -with the help of one of Lust's comments- making out with Roy in ((whatever place))
Lust’s Birthday Present or Birds in the Bush.
It had started off like a normal day. Alphonse Elric and his brother had continued on their quest for the philosophers stone when – out of the blue! – they were attacked by everyone’s favorite psychopathic shape-shifting hermaphrodite villain, Envy! Needless to say, there was a battle and some subliminal innuendo, and there was a great deal of Ed being slapped around like a rag doll. Eventually, somehow, Ed and Al got separated.
“Oh dear,” sighed Al, who found that not even picking up lost kittens could console him in his separation from his brother. “I can’t find nii-san! Whatever will I do?”
“Well,” said Hawkeye, when Al looked for his brother at headquarters, “you could request a military search party.”
“No,” said Al sadly, “nii-san and I don’t like relying on anyone. Besides, if the military got involved, hundreds upon hundreds of extras would die and nii-san would angst.”
“Oooh, I’ll go look for him!” offered Winry enthusiastically. “He still owes us some money for his last automail repair and—”
“No thank you,” said Al politely, eying the way Winry was gearing up for battle with a collection of wrenches. “I’ll find him.”
“I’ve been trying to find him,” said Wrath. He sounded almost glum, which left Al disturbed but not quite as disturbed as his encounter with Winry. “If I could get him, then he wouldn’t have an arm. You’ll know if I know where your brother is.”
And so it went. Alphonse Elric simply could not find his brother, even though he asked everyone he knew (except the colonel, but Al couldn’t find the colonel either, so that couldn’t really be helped). So, as the sun went down, he sat dejectedly on the steps of a church in old Central, hopelessly worried about his brother.
“What’s the matter?” asked a familiar voice.
Al looked up and saw the homunculus Lust. In any other situation, he would have been alarmed, but today he was just plain too worried about his brother. “I can’t find nii-san,” he told her dejectedly.
She smiled in a strangely cat-like manner (actually, Al didn’t know why he would describe her smile at cat-like. The cat he was carrying around inside him never smiled like that. Oh well). “Oh? That’s interesting.”
He nodded. “Envy attacked and then we got separated and I can’t find him!”
She laughed. “Don’t worry. Envy was just helping me.”
Al jumped to his feet, horrified. “Oh no!” he exclaimed. “Does that mean I have to run away from you, too?”
“No,” said Lust. “Envy was just setting up my birthday present.”
“Birthday present? I didn’t know homunculi had—”
“The day I was created,” she said, “but that’s beside the point. You and your brother were split up for a reason.”
“A reason? But--!”
“There’s an old saying,” she interrupted thoughtfully, “that ‘A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.’ That’s obviously not right, because you just know what those two birds are doing in the bush.”
“Where’s nii-san?” asked Al, a little more frantically.
“Inside,” beamed Lust.
Al burst through the doors of the old church frantically and saw, much to his horror, his brother and the colonel. No, it wasn’t just that he saw his brother and the colonel. He saw his brother and the colonel together all the time. What he didn’t see often was his brother and the colonel in varying states of undress, kissing.
“This… this is…” If animated suits of armor could resort to fainting to block out nastily surprising scenes, Al would have been on the floor in an instant.
“My birthday present,” purred Lust. “Two birds in the bush. Isn’t it lovely?”
And Alphonse Elric suddenly wished that he hadn’t found his brother after all.
Next up: Greed-and-posse fic and Hohenheim/Trisha. If they’re not done before Christmas… uh… they’ll be done before New Year. Earlier drabbles here and here.