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15 June 2014 @ 07:11 pm
How to Die - Chapter 21  
Title: How to Die
Author: Shell Mel
Rating: P G - 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 thought 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.

Roy carefully drew a simple circle on the paper. It would cause the paper to fold into an origami crane. It was child’s play really for even most average alchemists, let alone two state alchemists. He hadn’t even considered the fact that he might not be human anymore as a possibility, but Edward seemed petrified of the idea. Probably due to his history and how much more he was involved with the homunculus in the first place. His conclusion was very logical with those facts in place. Though Roy found he didn’t feel any different, or any less human at any rate.

He finished the circle and looked up at his audience. They were watching him carefully, obviously wary of what it would mean if this circle would not activate for him. Though none watched him more carefully then Edward did. Obviously, if Roy could not make the circle work, then the chances of Edward being human or being able to make the circle work would drop significantly. Or what if the gate had taken his alchemy? What if this would be their payment?

Roy pushed the thoughts aside. He could speculate if it didn’t work. Hesitating now was helping no one. Plus Edward had still preformed alchemy after getting Alphonse back. That alone was a reassuring fact.

He could feel the rush and warm of the energy that flowed through him as soon as he touched the circle. The alchemy greeted him like an old friend, the power easily bending to his will. Light sparked from the circle and the paper moved, and formed to his liking. What formed on the table was a simple crane. Relief followed through him as easily as the alchemy had.

Edward’s shoulders slumped slightly, obviously feeling every bit as relieved as Roy felt. Roy grabbed another sheet of paper.
“Need a pen?” Roy asked, a certain playful tone coming out.

Riza looked ready to shoot him for the comment, but Edward? The kid looked annoyed. Roy took this as a good sign that Edward’s personality was back in fine form.

“When do I ever need a pen?” He snapped.

Roy smirked. It had been a while since they bantered like this. To the point where Ed actually got mad instead of just mucking around in the office. It was almost nostalgic. He brought the paper over, offering it to the younger alchemist. Ed was quick to snatch it from him. The kid looked anxious and tense all over again now that it was his turn to perform.

Ed carefully placed the paper in his lap; he was practically glaring at the paper as if to will it to work. His hands hovering over it for a moment before he clapped. The light came and left quickly, but no one was looking at the paper. Instead they were drawn to crumbling alchemist. The affect was instant. One moment Edward was sitting upright, the next he had practically fallen off the bed and into Hawkeye’s arms.

Breda and Roy both shot forwards, but the boy was already recovering, trying to push himself up and off of Hawkeye.

“’M fine,” he mumbled. “Just dizzy.”

“Just relax,” Hawkeye insisted.

The woman kept a strong hold on the boy to stop him from getting up and possibly falling flat on his face. Roy dropped down to one knee in order to help lift Edward up. Between the two of them, they were able to get the kid back on the bed.

“Just dizzy,” the boy insisted as his eyes slide closed. “And a little tired.”

The fact that Edward had given up fighting them proved how tiring the exercise was. It had been a simple task, had it not? Or was he simply still too drained?

“Huh?” Came Breda’s voice from behind him. “I could never understand his loony sense of art.”

Roy turned to see the paper creation resting in Breda’s hands. It was indeed in true Edward style. Only Edward could take something as simple as a paper crane and decide a paper gargoyle would be much more appropriate. Though regardless of his style, it seemed to confirm that neither one of them were monsters or sins for the moment.

“I’m just going to get another cloth, some water and maybe a glass of his protein shake,” Hawkeye said suddenly. “Watch him and don’t upset him.”

Roy folded his arms, a little annoyed at the orders. Did everyone think he was incompetent or was it all in his head? He turned to look at the kid who had already started to doze and noticed that Hawkeye had laid the neatly folded cloth across his forehead before she had left.

Picking up his pocket watch from his side of the bed, he glanced at the time. It was only half past six. He’d come out of sleep far too early. He should have been only getting up at this stage, not feeling ready to get his uniform and leave for the mayhem that would be work. There was still an hour and a half before they needed to leave.

“Bastard?” Ed’s croaky voice drew his attention.

“Yeah, brat?” Roy sighed as he moved back towards the boy.

“What did we pay?” There was fear in the boy’s voice.

Through his time spent with Edward inside his head, he had learned on of the boy’s greatest fears was the gate and the price that might be taken every time he crossed paths with it.

“I don’t know, kid.” He said as he sat down on the side of the bed. “But I think we’re going to have to try and figure it out. Including why this all happened. The killing, the coming back, everything.”

“Not a kid,” Edward glared at him. “I don’t even know where to start in trying to figure any of it out.”

Roy recalled his talk with the Ed in his head. That Ed had been able to give him a name of someone who might be able to help them. Rose Thomas. Perhaps tonight when they returned back from work he would be able to discuss the person in question with Edward. For now, Roy wanted Edward to rest rather than track down leads.

“Well I have sources working on our killers,” Roy mentioned. “But as for the rest, it might have to wait until you’re actually functioning. And you call me useless.”

“That’s because you are, sir.” Came Hawkeye’s voice from the door. “And what did I say about upsetting him?”

Oh... She didn’t look overly impressed with the conversation.

“But I didn’t,” Roy insisted.

“Maybe not yet, sir.” She said calmly as she put the bottle of water and shake on the table. “But you are prone to putting your foot in your mouth in such matters.”

It wasn’t his imagination. Everyone did think he was incompetent.

Hawkeye easily coax the boy into sitting up and to start drinking the water. He drank it down almost greedily with no help at all. A good sign. Carefully, the woman took the bottle back from the boy despite his protests.

“But I’m still thirsty,” he whined.

“And you can have some more after you have some of this,” she promised, her tone warning the boy against arguing as she handed him the shake. “Too much water too quickly will just make you sick at the moment.”

The boy pouted for a moment before he started on the shake. He was downing that just as quickly as he had been the water. Hawkeye wet the other cloth and placed it on the back of Ed’s neck, before rewetting the other one and dabbing his face gently.

“You don’t have to do that,” Ed paused from his consumption, obviously a little embarrassed.

“Just trying to bring your temperature down before your fever becomes more serious,” she explained patiently.

Only with Edward was she ever so patient and gentle. The rest of them would have been shot at for even questioning this. Then again, the rest of them probably would have been told to suck it up and get back to work.

Roy couldn’t help but wonder if Edward even knew how privileged he really was in this regard?

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
amethyst_koneko: kitty Edamethyst_koneko on June 16th, 2014 01:04 am (UTC)
Roy couldn’t help but wonder if Edward even knew how privileged he really was in this regard? Very privileged I'd say. :) I have to agree with Roy about anybody else making a fuss. I'm sure they, esp Roy, would be facing down a gun barrel and a stern glare! XD

Paper gargoyle for the win! :D You shoulda seen the smile on my face with I saw Ed's "loony sense of art"! :) Nice choice of words, Breda! ^_^

“Bastard?” “Yeah, brat?” “What did we pay?” “I don’t know, kid.” Oh look! They're bonding! ^_^ Can't say as I ever recall Roy calling Ed a brat or a kid, not to his face anyway, but it's nice to see him referring to Ed as something other than Fullmetal. <3

Roy folded his arms, a little annoyed at the orders. Did everyone think he was incompetent or was it all in his head?
It wasn’t his imagination. Everyone did think he was incompetent.
*gigglesnort* Aww! Everyone's so mean to Roy! ^_^

And now to wait for the next chapter....
shell_mel: Writer Keepershell_mel on June 22nd, 2014 04:54 am (UTC)
Well that's our Hawkeye. Full of compassion and consideration, but only applied to the appropriate people.

I'm so glad you liked that. I figured a simple paper crane would not suit Ed or the situation. And of course Breda would be the one to say something about Ed's choice in how he shapes things.

Normally I don't think Mustang would be so brave as to say it to Ed's face. Or to say that he would feel comfortable talking to Ed in such an informal way, but considering the past few days and all that has happened, he is starting to bond with Ed. Ed may not remember the bonding, but would probably feel something different when around Roy. Less of a need to be defensive at least. And yes, Roy needed more vocabulary in referring to Ed. Ed after all goes to all the effort to have nicknames for Roy after all. :P

It's fun being mean to him. And sometimes a little true. He may be able to successfully be able to plot and remove a tyrant, but that doesn't mean he's so smooth in all aspect so his life and dealing with people.

Thanks for reading and reviewing. Always love hearing from you. :)