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Deceit & Touch
Sharp footsteps echoed throughout the empty hallway as a man made his way toward the exit. His uniform jacket was unbuttoned and hanging loosely at his sides, exposing a clean white shirt that gave away just how lean its wearer truly was. Bare--not gloved--hands were concealed within the depths of pant pockets, and the slightest glimmer of a sliver chain was sometimes visible from one of them. The calmed seriousness that was usually etched onto the man's face was not present, but instead a look of peaceful indifference seemed to have eased over his features. This look was a far cry from his daily composure, but hopefully it would get the desired results.
Roy Mustang had to hand it to them, the Elric brothers sure knew how to put up a front. They would always be throwing off others so that they could continue on their life-threatening journey by themselves; thinking it would be best not to involve anyone else. The truth was that it probably would be better if people left them alone, if only for their own good.
But they don't.
They don't because the Elric brothers have one fatal flaw: they push too hard. They don't let anyone get close. They force others away with every tactic they can come up with, and with all of their might, but that only serves to draw in those who care about them even more.
Because nobody wants to be alone that badly.
The Elric brothers need to learn to push only just so; just enough to keep others an arm's length away but still let them think that they are close enough to touch. It's the only way to keep people unsuspecting and out of the path to your goal. It's purely deceit, and nothing else.
In the military, deceit is one of the many essentials of daily life. Though it's not something you can simply have, but rather something you gain from experience. As stated in the laws of equivalent exchange: in order for something to be gained, something of equal value must be lost.
With a light jolt to the door handle the man was exposed to the sun. Its rays poured over him, casting an obscured double onto the ground.
But what do you lose from gaining the experience of deceit? Your innocence? Your ignorance? Maybe more than plain words can encompass.
Taking a glance at his pocketwatch, the man noted the time. As if it was pulled out of thin air, a cap was placed onto his head; it created a light shadow which served to engulf his eyes, concealing them from passerbyers and giving him a bit of abstract secrecy.
This clashed greatly with his attempted casual look.
Taking in a deep breathe to distract the thoughts that were threatening to override his mind, the man focused on the slight pressure that comes with the act of forcing too much air into your lungs. Once he was satisfied with the results, he let the air out slowly as he began to walk toward his destination. Dark rain clouds appeared from behind, taunting him, threatening to let loose their load onto the fearful occupants below.
Whatever it was that you truly lost, if there was any way to get rid of the experience of deceit and gain back the comfort of touch, Roy would have given up almost anything for it.