Title: How to Die
Author: Shell Mel
Rating: PG - 13
Warning: Some violence and near death scenes. Also for Ed's swearing.
Spoilers: Spoilers for episode 22 and end of anime series.
Characters: Edward Elric, Roy Mustang
Summary: AU Edward never though much about the incident back in lab 5 with the red water. He doesn't really remember it that much. He's seventeen now, repaying his debt by helping Mustang reach the top now Al finally has his body again. But what happens when he and Mustang become targets for assassination?
Author Notes: Alternative ending to Anime series. Prologue is based in episode 22, while the rest is a year after the series.
A surprise chapter while I'm on holiday! :D I even managed to find a beta over here! Now that's one hell of a souvenir! :D So thank you my lovely! :)
Roy felt warm. Too warm. He moved, but was unable to get comfortable in the bed. Something heavy had him pinned. He groaned, annoyed by this. Roy slowly opened his eyes and sighed heavily in annoyance. He glanced to his side to find his sight filled by gold.
Edward's hair was fanned out, covering his face and much of his back. The boy's metal arm lay out across Roy's chest, trapping him against the cuddling teenager. It made Roy uncomfortable that Edward's head was not only so close to his, but also laying on his chest, ancroching on his space.
Roy frowned as he heard a snicker coming from the door. He looked over to find Havoc sitting in the guard's seat, looking very amused.
"Didn't think that the boss was the cuddling type," the smoker said. "Did you?"
With that comment, Roy shoved Edward off of him. From the looks of things he hadn't moved during the night. Edward, however, had made his way from his side over to Roy's at some point. Roy hoped it hadn't been long, though judging from Havoc's amusement it could have been.
The shove didn't have the usual affect it probably would have had on Edward. While it did wake him, there was no yelling, growling or physical conflict that Roy would have thought would happen. Instead, Edward looked around with dazed eyes. Their eyes connected for a moment, before the younger alchemist curled up where he lay, into a ball to go back to sleep.
"Aww..." Came Havoc's voice, sounding slightly more amused then before. "You didn't have to be that rough. The kid looked so cute."
Roy glared at Havoc. He was not a morning person at the best of times. Let alone when he woke up to being teased or to find one of his subordinates curled up against him, invading his personal space. However, he was concerned. Edward wasn't a morning person either. He'd woken the kid from enough naps or early in the morning to know this behaviour was not normal. Carefully, he brushed away the golden veil and pressed his hand to the sleeping teenager's head. Edward was still warm, much too warm.
"Have you been keeping an eye on him?" He asked his subordinate. "He's burning up."
"Yeah," the blond frowned. "I've been checking him throughout my shift. He was fine."
"Well he's not fine now," Roy grumbled as he got out of bed.
It was too early for this. As he headed for the door, he noticed it was not even seven o'clock. Definitely too early for this. Especially since he didn't have to be at work today. Figures he wouldn't get a chance to relax and sleep in.
"Where are you going?" Havoc asked.
"Kitchen," he said simply as he opened the door.
Falman was standing guard at the door. Nothing was said. There was no argument. Roy needed caffeine and he needed it now. Or the likelihood of people being reduced to ashes was significantly higher. Falman fell into step behind him as he headed for the kitchen. The trip was silent and uneventful. Just the way Roy liked it.
The kitchen was busy, with many of the Armstrong's staff preparing breakfast and organizing the meals for the day. However, coffee was not hard to get. In fact, it was practically placed in his hand before he was ordered out of the kitchen.
Roy retreated with coffee in hand to the living room area where he could sit on one of the many comfy lounges. Falman still followed him, but did not take a seat as he had. There was silence as Roy drank the first half of his cup.
"Report, Falman?" He requested now that he felt slightly more awake.
"Nothing to report, sir." Falman said quietly. "Over night there was no suspicious activity and no attempts. Everything ran smoothly."
Roy nodded, thinking this over. Did the enemy know he was alive? They had been unable to verify if Fullmetal had dealt with the enemy or if some had managed to get away. There was still so much to take into consideration for the situation. It made his choice about not going into hiding even harder to not regret. If he ran, they won. If he stayed and got killed, they won. It was a tough situation. He just hoped they would make it without too many casualties.
Roy continued to sip his coffee. His thoughts drifted to what Fullmetal had shown him last night. Was a part of the boy really in his head? Or was his imagination just that good. What could he ask of his subortinates in order to verify it, without giving them cause to question his judgement?
A small sound at the door got his attention. He looked up to see a rather scruffy looking Edward, followed by a very confused Havoc. While it was nice to see the kid up and about, it caused some concern. Should Edward really be up and about? He didn't really look any better. Still pale, still looking dazed and still looking so tired. It was almost amusing to see the boy wrapped up in the giant blanket from the bedroom and yet still have half of it dragging on the floor behind him. Almost being the key word.
"What's Fullmetal doing out of bed?" Roy frowned.
"Sorry, Chief," Havoc said as he trailed after the slow walking teenager. "I'm not actually sure. The Boss got up. He said something was missing. He led me here. I've got no idea to be honest. I haven't been able to get much more out of him."
Roy's frown deepened. Missing? It couldn't be, could it? The whole looking for its fraction? Was it not just a dream after all? Roy placed his cup down as Edward stopped not too far from him. The younger alchemist was swaying slightly. He looked so lost as he stood there. Roy went over and carefully took hold of Edward's chin, forcing him to look up at Roy. The boy was still too warm. Had Havoc not had time to do anything about this fever?
"Fullmetal?" He tried, wondering if the kid would speak again, as Havoc had said he had.
Edward said nothing. Just like with the doctor. It was almost creepy for Fullmetal to be so silent.
"Fullmetal," He tried again. "What's missing?"
"Missing..." Edward said so quietly that Roy nearly missed it.
The blond's voice was so hoarse and quiet, barely a whisper at all. But the boy spoke. That was something. Hopefully it was a good sign. The sooner Edward could function properly again, the better off they would be. After all, he had proven himself as not only one of the nations best alchemists, but also a very impressive fighter. An asset Roy was grateful for in his climb to the top.
"Tell me what is missing," Roy pressed.
"Missing..." Came the same answer from the boy.
Roy sighed. This was getting them nowhere. Edward's eyes were already drooping more and more often the longer he stayed standing.
"Okay," Roy said, giving it one last try. "Where is it?"
Edward did not reply this time. Instead, he leaned against Roy and pressed into him. It surprised Roy, causing him to frown. Definitely not Ed like behaviour. He sighed once again. He'd better get the boy off his feet before he collapsed or something. Carefully, he tugged the blanket out of Edward's grasp. The younger alchemist did not resist or complain, he just swayed where he stood, watching Roy.
Gently, Roy guided Edward to one of the lounges. He laid the large sheet on the lounge and adjusted the pillows. Without much coaxing, Edward curled up on the lounge while Roy wrapped the sheets round him. The boy fell asleep quickly, allowing Roy to go back to his coffee.
"Aww..." Havoc said, smiling again.
"Not a word, Havoc," He warned the man, obviously not having enough coffee to put up with the teasing.
"Wouldn't dream of it, Chief," The smoker smiled mischievously.
"Right," Roy replied, not believing it. "He's still warm, can you look after him?"
"If he lets me this time," Havoc said as he left the room.
Roy frowned. Let him? He glanced at the sleeping boy. He couldn't be that hard to take care of right now, could he? Roy shook his head slightly as he went back to sipping his coffee.
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