Series Title: Games without Frontiers
Series Rating: PG - NC-17
Main Character:Roy Mustang, Riza Hawkeye
Other Characters: Various other members of the Peanut Gallery called Fullmetal Alchemist
Warning potential overdosing of crrrrack.
Synopsis: Does Riza regret her part in the game?
Author's Notes: AU/Non Canon. My own little private timeline; my own private little world. Yeah, and, just to add, my own little crackpot theories. Nothing else related to any episode of any kind, except the usage of the character(s) in question, though some events in some episodes will be used out of context as artistic license. I try not to make the events I use too spoilerish, but if I can’t help it, you’ll get a warning. Commentary is certainly welcome and tends to make me go “you like me! you really like me!”
Each chapter is titled after a lyric in a song that was part of the soundtrack I have for this tale. Check the current music for the song.
Riza looked up at the clock, rubbing the crick out of her neck. 1700 hours. Time to leave and run the dammed errands for her dammed Colonel. She looked over at him, grumbling and mumbling and tapping as if he were actually reading what was between the covers of the folder in front of him. Never mind that his eyes were fixed on the doodle he was creating in the margin of the document.
This was not going to work. Whatever she’d been thinking the day before, today she knew this was not going to work between them. There was no way she could carry on day to day conversations with this man and not think about what he’d done to her last night. Even that moment, she was picturing him braced above her, sweat dripping from his brow, doing what apparently he did best.
Her left eye began twitching. She found another dozen folders and slapped them on top of the two dozen she already had, picked them up and walked over to his desk.
Eyes closing as he was filling her and that time it hadn’t hurt. He flinched as she slapped the folders on his desk. “Last pile, sir.”
She could hear the groan of the desk as it almost gave way under the weight. She smiled. Good. That would keep him occupied for another... two hours. If he didn’t shove half of them in that bottom drawer.
“And, sir, it’s 1700 hours. Requesting permission to leave for the day to, ah, run those errands.”
That smirk, the same one he gave her when she way finally laying there on her back in her bed, legs twitching, crossed his face.
The temperature in the room rose a good ten degrees, at least in her estimation. She would ask Fuery to check on the air conditioning.
“Oh, yes, those errands. Thank you so much, First Lieutenant. It really wouldn’t do for me to show up tomorrow in an unkempt condition. Really wouldn’t do. Oh, and I think you’ll need this to take care of those errands for me.” He handed her a tiny envelope.
She took it, her hand barely brushing the rough cloth of his ignition glove. A shiver danced laughingly down her spine, pointing and giggling and chanting some kind of schoolyard taunt about trees and kissing. Telling it to shut up, she opened it and took a look inside. Well, turnabout was certainly fair play. “Yes, sir. I’ll be leaving now.” She saluted and left before his face and casual touch could summon another not work-related vision.
She took the steps two at a time and hit the door, taking a deep breath of fresh air. This would not work. It just couldn’t. She would end up a quivering mass of nerves before it was all over and he would end up in front of a tribunal, waiting for them to shoot him at dawn.
What had she been thinking to believe she could carry on such behavior? Just because she was the only one who could pull him out of his darkness didn’t mean she should have. There had to have been another way. Maes was an idiot to think that this could continue like this.
All thoughts in her head skittered to a halt when she recognized the car sitting in front of the headquarters. And the driver.
“What are you doing here?” she asked, carefully.
“Been asked to take you on your errands, sir.”
“Asked? By whom?”
“The Colonel, sir.”
She gaped. The young man opened the door and gestured. “If you will just step inside, I will explain.”
She did so quickly, before someone saw her standing there looking like a ninny.
First he introduced himself as Sergeant Carey Dennison. Then, without further preamble, he explained his presence and told her what he’d already told the Colonel, and what he hadn’t told the Colonel.
She was floored. The Lieutenant Colonel had certainly taken care of a great deal of contingencies. She said as much, and the young man grinned.
“Sir, he has your best interests at heart.”
Riza sighed. With the one person in charge of every covert resource that one could shake a stick at, who was she to resist?
“It’s still dangerous,” she muttered to herself.
“Yes, sir. Very.”
Riza looked at the Sergeant. “Then why are you involved?”
“Because, the Lieutenant Colonel has every confidence that it will work.”
What devotion and loyalty. She smirked. She knew exactly how he felt.
She doggedly went and picked up the uniforms. No one even gave her a second glance; she was the Colonel’s immediate subordinate and there was nothing wrong with her doing his errands. After all, he had so many more important duties, that he shouldn’t have to worry about his mere laundry! Riza rolled her eyes and made sure that the bill went to the correct place.
She climbed back into the car and told Dennison to take her back to her home. “I have to feed my dog.”
When she walked back into her own home, she was assailed with memories again of the night before. Little hints lay around her house; a missed shard of ceramic from the cup and saucer, that obscene piece of underwear dangling from Black Hayate’s mouth, the towel left on her bed. She picked it up and brought it to her face. It was still damp; his scent was still there. She sat down on the bed and stared at the towel.
After so many years, he was finally everywhere she was. And it honestly scared her to death. She closed her eyes and tried to picture the near future. What met her was a swirl of different scenarios, some good, some bad, some downright comical. Nothing was set or organized, as it should be.
When she had made this decision, she had known there would be consequences. She’d accepted them all at the time, because she knew that what she was doing would probably shock Roy into stopping his downward spiral. Half of her expected that it would only last one night, and that he would recover himself and retreat back into their sterile world of duty and responsibility. But, he hadn’t. He’d actually made a point to tell her that he would discover a way to make a relationship between them work.
And she, silly thing that she was, had given him a week.
In all the years she’d known the man, she’d never known him to back down from a challenge. She’d never known him to fail once challenged either. He had decided he would drag her, drag them both, kicking and screaming if need be, onto this new path, despite herself.
Well, what had she expected?
Rejection, her mind whispered. It had come more than once in her life, and there had been no indication that the Colonel would be any different. Too cold, she was, too detached, was the prevailing opinion. Her training had made her too distant from her fellow humans. Her status as a walking, talking tome of all of the knowledge her father held kept her away from anyone who would discover her secret.
Only once in her life had she found a connection, and that was with the man who had just invaded every aspect of her life with all of the manic frenzy of a firestorm, stealing all the air from the rooms in her mind like that crazy element that he had at his command.
She nodded to herself, allowing the surrender for the time limit she’d given him. One week. Perhaps he would fail for the first time in his life. And perhaps they could go back to the way things were before she’d walked into that library. It would probably be for the best. Until then, she would play along.
She dug in the bottom of her closet for her rucksack. In it, she shoved a spare uniform and everything else she would need. When the pup came to play with the cord of the sack, she looked at him speculatively.
“Do you want to go visit a friend, dear?”
A puppy’s version of a smile and thumping tail was her answer.
She laughed, scooping up the bundle of fur and heading for the door. As she did so, she noticed the bandage on her hand.
Funny how no one asked her what happened to her hand. Especially Havoc. She would have expected about a thousand questions from him.
The sun had completely set as she got herself and Hayate into the waiting car. The trip to the Colonel’s house was taken in thoughtful silence, for which Riza was grateful. She was a bundle of nerves, finally realizing that she was truly on a path where the end was completely obscured. It wasn’t a comfortable feeling.
They pulled up to the small flat. Riza knew that Roy had a modest home, nothing flashy, quite unexpected for the personality he portrayed. It didn’t even look bigger than her own home. Her curiosity was piqued; how did the Colonel live when no one was looking?
“I’ll be here in the morning, sir,” Dennison told her as she carried her the cleaning, rucksack and Hayate out of the car. She told him goodnight, and watched as he drove off into the night.
Maes had certainly covered almost all of the contingencies.
She moved to the door, her stomach flipping and flopping. Putting the dog down, she pulled the key out of her pocket, fitted it into the lock.
The door flew open before she could even turn it. She almost fell inside, when a hand grabbed her arm and pulled.
She, the cleaning, her rucksack and the dog stumbled over the threshold and stood there blinking, wondering if she’d been the victim of some kind of ambush. Her hand even went for her sidearm.
“I thought you weren’t going to come.”
Well, if he turned on a light or two, she could probably see him. Squinting, she made out a shadow sitting on a rather large bed in the corner. Pursing her lips, she dropped everything and felt around for a lamp. Turning it up, she took in her surroundings.
Three rooms. A kitchen, a bathroom and a great room, containing nothing more than desk, a couch, a bookshelf and bed with a footlocker at the end. Not much more than was in a dormitory room, just larger. The bed seemed to be the only true luxury in the room. It was antique; a large four-poster affair that was covered with simple linens and more pillows than one human should ever possess. She eyed it with some wariness. It was quite big enough for the both of them, and then some. And looked very comfortable.
She finally took in the man who owned this picture of militant simplicity. He was sitting there, hands clasped between his knees, head bowed. On the floor beside his foot, she noticed with a small gasp, was a bottle. She was on it like her namesake on a rat. Before he could react, she’d snatched it up and taken it to the kitchen. Upending it, she waited, and sure enough he’d followed her to offer a half-hearted protest.
“As long as I am here, you will have no other mistresses,” she told him. “Especially this bitch.” Well, that had been certainly forward of her.
“I thought you weren’t going to come,” he repeated.
“And what did you think I was going to do, come rushing over here like a silly little piece of fluff?” she demanded to know. “Or, oh yes, call Havoc and have his nosy ass bring me some clothes to wear tomorrow? Or, perhaps, let my poor dog starve to death just so that you could get your hands on me?”
He was staring at her, a half-smile on his face. Her mouth clicked shut on whatever else she was going to throw at him.
“How do you do it?” he asked.
“Be as ... frigid at work and so ...” he waved his hand, “elsewhere?”
She blushed. “I can’t be a bitch all of the time, Colonel. I’d be grey haired and wrinkled before I turned thirty.” She pitched the empty bottle in the trash and moved back into the great room. Lifting the cleaned uniforms, she asked. “Where do these go?”
“You can leave them there,” there was a note in Roy’s voice, which warned her to put the uniforms down, and quickly. He was pacing toward her, a determined stalk. Given the size of the room, she knew it wouldn’t take that long to reach her. She put the uniforms on the couch and gave them a pat.
Before she could do much more, he’d grabbed her by the arms and was lifting and pushing her, about an inch from the ground. Her back came in contact with a wall and her breath left her in a gasp. She had no time to inhale, either, because his lips were on her between one frantic heartbeat and the next.
It was fortunate that he hadn’t tasted like that whiskey, or she would have been forced to push him away. Instead, she moaned, and grabbed a double-handful of his shirt, hanging on as he assaulted her senses once again. He swept her hands aside and began yanking on the lapels of her jacket, pulling on the fasteners of her trousers. “I thought you weren’t going to come,” he mumbled again against her mouth, trying to frantically do several things at once. Finally, cursing he released her lips and concentrated on divesting her of her clothing. Somewhere in the back of her mind she thought that perhaps she should slow him, if not stop him completely. Her arms chose then to disobey her.
He gave up on her jacket, and cursed, reaching for her trousers again. She placed her head on his shoulder and took a deep breath. She was amazed that she never noticed that scent ... like a lit match, underneath a layer of something spicy. Sparks and black cardamom. It was from the cloth of his gloves, his cologne, residuals all over all exposed parts of his body.
She felt the cloth of her trousers slipping past her hips, her underwear bunched with them. Deft, that. She wriggled a little, and they slipped further down, past her knees.
He was panting against her cheek, even as his hand wandered down, touching her again. His mouth moved in a smile that she could feel in a chuckle she couldn’t hear over her own gasp. He said it again as his fingers moved, fluttering inside of her, finding switches in her that she didn’t know she had, “I thought you weren’t going to come.”
As he somehow manipulated the very breath from her body and sparked a flame that engulfed her from inside, she managed through a breathless sob, “I’m here.”