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Ed loves Roy, and Roy loves . . . Roy.

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Paper in Fire

prologue

He could hear the phone ringing as he transmuted the lock on the front door open, and never being one to pay attention to the finer points of personal privacy, Edward Elric answered it as soon as he was inside.

"Mustang residence," he said, and smirked at the tone of his own voice. Apparently the atmosphere of the bastard's house alone was enough to turn anyone into a pompous ass.

"Um, may I speak with Roy Mustang please?" a throaty feminine voice asked hesitantly.

"He's not able to come to the phone right now," Ed returned, the sound of the shower clueing Ed in to his commanding officer's whereabouts. "May I ask who's calling?"

"This is Shanice Burrows, returning his call."

Ed frowned. "OK, I'll let him know you called back as soon as he's free."

"Oh, would you be able to give him a message for me? Tell him I am free tonight, and would love to join him for dinner."

Ed's frown deepened. "Sure, I'll tell him, but somehow I think he's changed his mind about going out with you tonight."

"What do you mean?"

"Well, he's upstairs right now balls deep in a redhead, and I'm pretty sure he has that brunette from the Accounting Division lined up for later. I'll give him the message though."

Dead silence. Then, a tense, "Who is this?"

"This is Major...Pain. Old friend of the Brigadier General's. Say, since you're probably free for the evening, what say you and I meet down at the Nag's Head for a couple of cold ones? You gotta be hot if the Mustang wants you. For dinner. What are you wearing right now, by the way?"

The dial tone was Ed's only response. Mission accomplished. And just in time, as the rattling pipes announced that the shower was over and a clean, refreshed Mustang was soon to emerge.

Ed peered up from the bottom of the stairs, and sure enough, Mustang appeared, a towel slung low around his hips, another rubbing at his damp hair.

"Ed! You're back early! Did the assignment go alright?"

"Yeah, no problems. I'll report into headquarters tomorrow with the details."

"Accurate details this time. I mean it Ed."

"Yeah yeah."

"Did I hear the phone just now?"

"I don't know, maybe. I just got here."

"I'm expecting a call."

"Got a date, Mustang?"

"As a matter of fact, yes, I expect I do." Mustang said, grinning. "So if you'll excuse me..."

"I just got back from a grueling, two-week assignment. Break your date?" Ed looked up the stairs at the older man hopefully. After all, from the sound of it, this alleged date wasn't actually made yet, and now wasn't likely to happen at all thanks to Ed's little prank.

The Brigadier General frowned. "Really, Ed. You can't expect me to rearrange my entire schedule just for you. We've been through this before."

"Not your entire schedule, Roy," Ed said, hope sinking, "just tonight's."

The older man sighed. In all honesty, he had been looking forward to Edward's return, but the kid was always pushing the boundaries. Give in now, and he'd expect it all the time. "No Ed. You know the rules. No exceptions. We agreed."

Obviously not pleased, Ed nodded. "Fine. Enjoy your date," he snapped, turning towards the door.

"Thank you, I'm sure I will. And Fullmetal?" The young man looked back over his shoulder. "Please do lock the door on your way out."

Ignoring the other man, Ed kicked the front door open with his automail foot, and then kicked it closed again as well. He all but stomped down Mustang's front walk, consoling himself with thoughts of how the asshole would soon be dealing with the fallout from 'Major Pain's' little prank.