Fic: Half Lives, Chapter 8: Snap and Explode
Rating: NC 17 for GRAPHIC yaoi sex and references to domestic violence. (Yes this chapter DOES have the “good stuff”)
Pairing: Roy/Ed, references to past Roy/Hughes. There is a het relationship refered to—but it has gone badly. Very badly.
Genre: Hurt/Comfort, Yaoi romance.
WARNING: This is yaoi. If you aren’t comfortable, don’t read. Wank will be ignored.
Spoilers: Years have passed since the Father’s Fall (chapter 108) Things in Resembool have not gone well and Ed has the scars to prove it, seeking healing and refuge in his work at Central Command…but Roy Mustang has never been one to calmly stand by and see his friends hurt…
Chapter 1: http://community.livejournal.com/fm_alchemist/6932554.html
CHAPTER SUMMARY: In four weeks, Ed and Winry will meet in Resembool to sign the papers to dissolve their contract of marriage and to decide on the custody of their children—but not without a serious warning from Ed concerning Alphonse—and sharp words for Ed from Izumi Curtis. Stressed out, frustrated at nearly everybody and stir-crazy from weeks in the hospital, Ed finally breaks down…and Roy risks everything to bring Ed out of the darkness that has haunted him since Al returned to his body.**Warning—Explicit Yaoi Sex. You have been warned.***
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As always, for rueme for her amazing artwork
HALF LIVES Chapter 8: Snap and Explode
By The Binary Alchemist, 2010
It was time to for Edward Elric to stop running.
No train schedule would rescue him and when Dr. Knox put the phone in his hand and left him alone in the room with his estranged wife on the other end of the line he would have feigned sleep if he could. This time he took the receiver and faced up to what he had been avoiding since the night he’d fled into the cold, blood oozing from his freshly stitched scalp.
“It’s me. We have to talk.”
“Okay. I got your letter. What do you want to do, Edward?”
There might have been awkward silence if he had had not be so sure—had he not been so absolutely sure that his decision was the right one.
It was against his nature to think of himself, to consider his own needs. He was many thing—stubborn, obsessive, prone to guilt and slow to trust…and fiercely loyal to his loved ones. Once he loved someone—any one, man, woman or child—he was loathed to see the worst in them.
He did not see the worst in her. What he saw was a side of her that he could not live with any longer. Perhaps, on some very deep level, she was frustrated for having obsessed over him to the exclusion of all else—and having gotten what she thought she had wanted had come to realize it was just not enough to feed her own spirit. Better now than later. Better me than the kids or anyone else. If they set one another free and insured that their children suffered no loss of love and care…she could become the master craftswoman she was so obviously meant to be. And Ed…
…without alchemy, what was his destiny?
Alchemy could be a crutch. He regarded himself as proof of that. Teacher had warned him that it was more important to learn to fix something with ones own hands than to rely on alchemy to mend the evils of the world. Wasn’t he proof of that? He couldn’t drive a nail or cook a decent meal or plant a row of radishes or even mend a hole in his jacket pocket—couldn’t even thread a needle or make a drinkable cup of coffee. If he got dirty on the road he used alchemy to clean his clothing. Confronted with a diaper brimming with something warm and runny and foul beyond belief he had stared helplessly at Pinako. Neither he nor Winry had a clue what the hell to do, and little Maes had squalled miserably and peed all over himself and Granny had had to show them—had to teach them what life should have already taught them.
He had lived for alchemy. She had lived for engineering. She had wanted a child—thought it would bind him closer. Instead they were baffled and scared and helpless. They loved Maes…but if Pinako hadn’t been there….and then when it looked like they were drifting apart she had again thrown caution to the winds, timed her pursuit of him for the best chance of conception…and along came another innocent they scarcely knew how to care for.
Maes and Nina deserved better. So did Winry.
And so did Edward Elric.
She cried, a little. But she listened. And in the end she agreed to the divorce. The forms would be signed at the magistrate’s office in four weeks in Resembool. Grounds for dissolution would be listed as ‘irreconcilable differences”. She would take back her maiden name—the children would retain their father’s. Custody would be shared—but Ed had reservations about them remaining with their mother without the supervision of Pinako. “We’d better figure this out, Winry,” he warned her. There was something of an implied threat there, she countered. “Would you care to see the x-rays,” he asked softly.
“You think I’d ….EDWARD!” She was getting angry now. “How dare you—I would never—“
“You said you loved me. You lost your temper and started taking it out on me. I kept my mouth shut—and you fuckin’ nearly killed me by accident.”
Handcuffs. A warrant. We, the State, will prove beyond a reasonable doubt is that defendant caused bodily injury to Mr. Elric, resulting in laceration, concussion, fracture of the skull and a subdural hematoma to the right side of the brain requiring surgical intervention. “I would never hurt Maes or Nina,” she stoutly insisted.
“How many times did you hit Alphonse with the wrench in the hospital in Central after the attack on Lab 5?”
It took her several moments to find her voice. “Ed—that’s…that was a suit of armor!”
“That…was…my…BROTHER.” His voice became cold. “You hit him and hit him and cried and sobbed and screamed at him and kept hitting him over and over and over---“
“Ed, he couldn’t feel it—“
“YOU HIT MY BROTHER. If he’d been in flesh you would have killed him a dozen times over. You didn’t think of that. You were pissed at us, pissed at him and you just kept flailing away—because he didn’t tell you to stop. Well,” his voice was low, shaking slightly. “I am telling you to stop. For good. His good. My good. Maes’ good. Nina’s good. And for your good. And to make damned sure you don’t do it again,” he took a deep breath, “let me tell you about the other warrant.”
She felt sick. “Wha-what??”
“I told Hawkeye to give you the warrant I refused to sign—the one for assault charges for cracking my skull. I told Pinako to tear it up after you’d read it and my letter. But--,” his voice was barely a whisper, “if…I…ever…hear of you laying a hand on any…other…person…even so much as slapping a mosquito…you’ll find out about the warrant I did sign---the one stating that I have personally seen you hit my brother repeatedly and with enough force to harm or kill him. That the only thing that protected him from injury was his armor—they don’t need to know about the blood seal. I have copies of my medical records. I have signed statements from others who have seen you hit him in the past. I have my surgical notes and x-rays. And there is enough evidence against you there to take Maes and Nina away for good. I would rather see them fostered with a loving family a million miles away from me than to have Maes piss you off some day when he’s a hard-headed teenager and you hit him the way you hit me and Al.”
She began to sob, fingers clutching the receiver, twisting the cord over and over around her fingers. “Ed….oh god…Ed…I’m sorry…I’m so sorry….”
“Then prove it.” His voice brooked no nonsense. “Go to Rush Valley. Be the best you can be—the best anywhere. You and I need to grow up. Maes and Nina need more that either one of us can give them. If that means we have to get someone to help you—we do it. If it means we let someone else raise them—we do it. You get your shit together. I’ll get mine together. So that when those two grow up—they can see that their parents aren’t total assholes—and that we loved them enough to make sure they had the best chance to grow up into good people. If you agree to that—then that second warrant never sees the light of day.”
Pinako would be there. Alphonse would be there. Hawkeye would be there—she was as fair and objective as they came. Her cool head was one thing that both he and Winry had agreed upon.
And Sig and Izumi Curtis would be there too.
“I ought to be furious with you for not telling me—I had to hear it from Alphonse,” Teacher growled into the phone. “But yes—absolutely. Sig and I need to be there for you.”
“I—I figured you’d be objective about my side of fucking things up. I know Pinako’s not gonna go easy on Winry either. We need people who love us enough not to let us get away with bullshitting ourselves….and Al’s gonna cave in and get emotional, “ he added with a hint of bitterness. “You know how he gets about Winry.”
In Dublith, Izumi and Sig exchanged knowing glances. “He still doesn’t get it,” Izumi whispered, covering the mouthpiece.
“He misses things sometimes, but he’s a good kid,” Sig smiled into his beard.
“I sincerely hope you aren’t holding that girl completely responsible for this mess you’ve made. You’re just as guilty as she is. She’s not the only one who was impulsive and immature and not ready for this. You weren’t thinking either. And while you never raised your hand to her—you ran off and avoided her and believe me—that’s as damaging as a blow to the head in it’s own way. Look what happened to you and Hohenheim. You know how bitter you felt towards him for disappearing? Think how she must have felt.”
Ed bristled. “Hey—the day we agreed to this she said—“
“I don’t care what she said. What she said and what she really wanted were two different things, obviously. That’s human nature. You weren’t perceptive to that, Ed. You were insensitive. It was easier to jump on a train than face up to the cracks and strains of your relationship. You made the commitment. You got in, found the water was too hot and you skipped town. You left her to simmer and stew…and she lost her cool and let you have it. Believe me—if you had been my husband, I’d have wanted to brain you too sometimes, “she added with a chuckle, then became serious again. “You two are ending this, so do it right. See to the kids and own up to your mistakes. You’re going to have to deal with each other for the rest of your lives because you have children between you. So clear the air and make damn sure you don’t do further damage. You hear me, Edward?”
“We’ll be there. See you then.”
He had faced Winry, the safety of distance notwithstanding. Izumi had given him some well-deserved hell. He was shaking from the strain, snappish and ready to lash out at anything—or anyone—when Roy arrived at the hospital after an exhausting day that made front page news.
The treaty between Amestris and Drachma would be signed in an official ceremony in 48 hrs. An uneasy truce—but a step closer to peace. Olivier Armstrong had gotten drunk with Tsar Dimitri Nikitovich and His Excellency Fuhrer President Roy Mustang….
“The first drinks were real,” Roy admitted smugly. “The other six bottles of Vodka were filtered water. They never knew the difference. By the time the meeting broke up Dimitri was singing “The Snow Queen of Volgagrad” and Olivier was doing a Cossack dance with her sword and I was pretending to be completely ripped and calling out the items of the truce and they kept yelling, “hell yes!” and “Da!” and all three secretaries were frantically getting it all down and making them sign it. By the time they sobered up,” he finished proudly, “they were too embarrassed to take it all back. Mission accomplished.”
And Edward was a million miles away. He hadn’t heard one word of Roy’s triumphant trickery. Roy would have been annoyed but his chafed ego was laid aside as soon as he noticed the clenched knuckles twisting the sheets and the taut fury in those golden eyes.
He pulled his chair closer to the bed, reached out and laid his hand over Edward’s. “Something’s wrong. Tell me.”
Like a snap of his fingers, Roy’s words and touch set off an explosion.
In Ishbal he’d snapped his fingers—and the walls burst from within as the volatile gasses in the very air around the city ignited. The ground would rock. The window panes would melt into puddles. Bricks and bodies would char and the stench of broiled human meat would linger in his nostrils for years until the very thought of a grilled steak on the Presidential banquet table nearly made him vomit. He fully comprehended the force and fury unleashed when a volatile fuel source was touched by flame. A chemical reaction—furious, not like the half-life of nuclear decay.
Sometimes things die by degrees—unstable atoms breaking down bit by bit, half-life by half-life.
And sometimes they blow apart with incredible force, just as Edward Elric blew apart, right before Roy’s eyes. It had been coming for years.
He ranted. He cried. He screamed, cursing everybody from God to his father to Alphonse—yes, even his own beloved brother. “He left me! The sonofabitch just…left…me. We were supposed to travel the world together. To study together—all those dreams…and the bastard goes off to Xing to study that—that—dragon crap with that kid….and just leaves me there in Resembool. Goddamn him!” The tears were coming now. “And…and…I was all , ‘sure, you go east, and I’ll go west’….and I was smiling like it was a good idea. ‘When you coming back, Al?”’ ‘Oh, I don’t know. I’m going to keep going East---cross the oceans—there’s a whole world to explore…’ AND HE WENT WITHOUT ME. Goddamn him,” Ed was pounding his fists furiously on the mattress. “I gave up my life—I gave up alchemy…I gave him my life…everything….and he…just…went…away.” He was sobbing so hard he could barely catch his breath. “He…I was alone…all alone…and she started crying at the station…and I thought…at least someone gives a fuck…and I won’t be alone…I can keep going…but….it wasn’t…I thought I could make myself feel…my whole life, from the moment we transmuted Mom—all of it was to take care of my brother…and he…doesn’t need me…and I fucked up everything and thought Winry and I could compromise….and we can’t and it’s done and I’ve got kids to worry about…and now…I….I….ohhhh, FUCK IT ALL!!!”
He slammed back against the mattress, face down, and howled and sobbed until he lay still.
And the whole time, Roy listened to this raving, this fury. Holding Ed’s hand. Saying nothing, but feeling every single wave of pent up energy that had been threatening to explode for years. All it took was a simple snap.
And Roy’s gloved touch was all that was needed to set off the explosion.
But if that touch could destroy….it could heal…
Gloves laid to one side. One hand laid in the middle of a toned back that barely lifted in breath. For a moment, Roy was really afraid that Ed’s outburst had ruptured the hematoma—that he had done himself a fatal injury. But…no. He was covered with sweat and his heart beat raggedly. Too much….for too long. For a lifetime. His hands began to stroke…to soothe. To comfort. The muscles beneath his fingers were rigid as steel but the trembling ceased.
The hands began to…caress.
He couldn’t have stopped himself if he had wanted to. He tugged at the strings that closed the hospital gown in the back, drawing the much laundered cotton out of the way. Pressing his face into the curve of the scarred back, he was not quite certain when the caresses gave way to kisses, blindly nuzzling the sweaty skin, lips tracing up and down the curve of spine and shoulder, drawing aside the heavy mass of tangles to get at that vulnerable spot, just at the nape of the younger man’s neck. That neck arched…almost imperceptively.
Shoulders. Neck. Shoulder blades—one still bearing the metal bolt where his arm brace had screwed right into his bones. A tongue laved the metal clean, then the dark ring of scar surrounding it. Droplets of fresh sweat stung his lips. He licked them clean, sucking lightly, now and then letting his own neediness get the better of him as he left small marks of passion as his mouth returned again and again to that inviting flesh where shoulder curved into neck and in the small of the back…just above the warm crevice …he traced it with the tip of his tongue and was rewarded with a shudder and a subtle shift of lean hips.
Abruptly, Edward turned over. Face impassive, eyes as dull with pain and withdrawal as they had been that horrible day—was it ten years ago? Twelve?—when Roy had shouted into the face of a catatonic child in a wheelchair as his brother whispered over and over We’re sorry…we’re sorry…we’re sorry… Roy had seen the light come on in those golden eyes that day.
He would be damned if it would ever go out again.
A fine trail of soft, soft down shimmered low on a taut belly. His open mouth pursued it to the edge of the sheet, now darkened with spots of moisture and tented over something hard and urgent—something Roy would not touch without invitation. Instead, fingers and tongue explored each toned muscle, pausing to linger over that horrible scar where that perfect body had been pierced in Brigg’s Mountain. His palms slid up, sweeping along Edward’s sides, pausing to trace the ribcage and even more steel fragments that could not be removed without drilling them out of his skeleton. Rose-dark nipples stiffened. Scarred palms—each bearing the horrible stigmata of Bradley’s swords—circled them firmly as Roy licked and kissed his way up the younger man’s body.
He pressed his face into the palm of a hand of warm flesh that had replaced one of cold steel. He rubbed his cheeks against it, grazed the fingers with his open mouth and kissed the fine tracery of veins in a wrist still not quite so strong as the other side. He sucked on the fingers and felt a shudder of pleasure as one moist digit brushed his cheek in a vague caress.
A heavy sigh invited Roy to feast on those hardened nipples, sucking harder than he had dared before, nipping gently. The body beneath him stirred and underneath his mouth the rhythm of breath and heartbeat began to quicken dramatically. He lifted his face from the sweaty flesh he had tenderly bathed with his tongue—Roy Mustang, His Excellency. Fuhrer President of Amestris and one of the most powerful men in the free world. Humbled by simple emotion.
Humbled by love.
Giving. Asking nothing. Demanding no response, not even acknowledgement. He was doing this for Edward. Calling him back to himself—because he could not—would not—allow Edward to fall back into the darkness again.
Those golden eyes became focused. A voice ragged from shouting and screaming whispered a name—and it was not the name of the girl he had once called his wife.
He lifted his hands before Roy’s gaze. A golden ring was slipped from a hand that shook no longer. The ring was laid aside, dropped into the drawer of the nightstand.
The drawer was closed…and that hand then curled around Roy’s face as the other hand clasped Roy’s shoulder, pulling him down…
The scent he knew from Roy’s pillow—now richer, more enticing. The taste was nothing he knew before and didn’t know he would make him greedy for that firm mouth, wanting to suck on that agile tongue that had sent sparks across his skin and coaxed him back to where he needed to be—where he now wanted to be. Back in his flesh. Back in the present. Here. With him.
Ed had admitted to himself years ago that he was curious about men. There had been flashes of interest—but he was too inhibited, even when Ling got grabby with him. He lived for the mission, lived for his brother—only his brother didn’t need him. His body was simply a soft machine that got him where he needed to go. That was why marrying Winry hadn’t been such a big deal. Pleasurable? Yes. But nothing he couldn’t compartmentalize and nothing he particularly missed when they were apart.
Nothing like this. Nothing that made his body writhe and arch and yank at the high formal collar of Roy’s dress uniform with the urgent need to feel skin against skin.
The hips churning frantically under him was taken as the invitation Roy had been waiting for. Pulling away, he slid down, throwing the gown aside and yanking the damp covers away. Ed was naked, cock arched and flushed, belly already slick with moisture, thighs spread, toes clawing at the mattress. Roy did not hesitate. A tickle of warm breath against the softest flesh of Ed’s inner thigh. A soft kiss that moved up to the crease of that thigh, lingered on the tip, sucking lightly—then a tongue tip slid under his foreskin, circling as the pad of Roy’s thumb circled lower, pressing against the most sensitive and secret place of all.
Ed’s head fell back against the pillow. His mouth dropped open in a soundless scream. Under the bricks and mortar of a fortress of solitude he’d built around his oh-so-vulnerable heart, something cried out he’s not even taking his clothes off…he’s doing this for me…like he held my hand in surgery…like he slept here night after night while worrying about a whole damned country…he has the fucking world on his shoulders…and yet he’s here…he’s here…because I mean that much to him….
And the Fuhrer of Amestris climbed off the bed and smiled down at him. “Be sure, Ed,” he whispered softly. “Be very…very sure.”
Ed nodded. “Hurry….now…”
The Fuhrer bowed and began to slowly unbutton his collar.
He had been raised in a whorehouse. Seduction was something he’d witnessed from childhood. It had been a game for the girls there—a business transaction.
This was no game. The greatcoat slid to the floor. Buttons slid out of button holes. The heavy silver cuff links bearing the state seal were unfastened and laid aside. And then Roy paused. He stood absolutely still. Then he reached down to Ed’s belly, catching the salty drops that had pooled on his abdomen on his fingertips. Roy slicked his nipples with that moisture, stroking them to hardness before licking his fingers clean. Shoes and socks kicked aside. The fingers now toyed with his zipper. “Look at me,” he purred. The front of his trousers was stained and dark. “You made me come for you, just from tasting your skin. Look at what you do to me, Edward.” His hands slid under the waistband, caressing and stroking before pushing the trousers down and out of the way. Roy’s eyes held Edward’s, demanding acknowledgement. He stood with his thighs spread wide, dripping and coated with his own semen, flushed and fully hard again. “This is what you do to me…”
Edward hooked a leg over each of the raised bed safety rails. He lifted his head and commanded. “Come here.”
The tongue. God…the tongue…Each curse urged Roy on: “Oh fuck…ohhfuckkkkk…shit….yeah….god, don’t stopppshiiiitttt….” He made Ed watch as he sat on his heels, slicked his fingers with his own seed and the tip of a finger pressed inside. Roy waited…Ed hissed for him to just do it…but no…Instead that bastard Mustang began to stroke that ring of muscle, inside with his finger---outside with his tongue. Ed began to call on the names of gods he didn’t believe in. A second finger pressed in. They scissored. A tongue plunged between them. Ed ripped at the sheets with wildly flailing hands. A third finger slid deeper and touched him right where the book had told Ed about—the place that made the colors bleed from his sight and made him curse himself hoarse, demanding—ordering the Commander in Chief of the Nation of Amestris to fuck him now or he’d kill Roy with his bare hands.
Roy grinned sadistically. “I never take orders from civilians…but…” his voice dropped two octaves, “if my lover asks me…”
“Roy…” Beaten at last, Ed whispered gently. “I need you.” His hand reached out to stroke his lover’s cock. “Now…”
The slick, velvety head eased inside. “Wait…give it a moment…let your body get used to me…I want this to be so good…so good for you…” Ed’s opening spasmed a few more times then gradually relaxed. “Yessss….that’s it…a little more now…” He pressed deeper, past the ridge of his foreskin. It was pure torment—that silken heat so tight around him…but he would wait…wait…yes, goddamn it if it killed him…he would wait…”More?” he murmured.
Deeper. Deeper still…until…”
Roy paused. “I made you say the ‘G-Word’” He grinned mischeviously.
“Fuck you, Mustang!”
“As you wish.” And he was balls deep, pounding hard with Edward clawing, biting, cursing and digging his heels so hard into Roy’s back he later needed salve on the scratches and a cold pack on his bruised backside. But it was beyond bilss and at that moment Ed could have ripped the skin off his back with his old automail fingers and Roy wouldn’t nave noticed. He was oblivious to everything except his lover’s ravenous mouth and wild cries, the scalding hot softness that squeezed him so tight he was cursing too, panting out Edward’s name with every breath. His lover’s scent and taste and tightness and ferocity was intoxicating.
And the Fuhrer of Amestris surrendered, firing a single, shuddering shot before collapsing in his lover’s fierce embrace.
“Stay inside,” Ed whispered, kissing Roy’softly now, mouth tender and gentle. “Feels so good.”
“You’ll get me hard again,” Roy chuckled. “I don’t want to wear out out.”
Ed gave him a seductive grin. “Maybe I want to wear you out. I learned a lot from that little book Aunt Chris left me—the one she gave you years ago.”
Roy’s eyes grew wide. “You mean…she..she…didn’t..” he spluttered.
Ed’s hand slid down his back and parted his nether cheeks. He began to circle and stroke as he had been so recently—and deliciously—educated. “Damn right. And you always said I was a fast study….right???”
..TO BE CONTINUED…..