murder of crows

Misspent Youth

Edward wondered if Al knew that his room gave him a beautiful view of where Al took his girlfriend to make out.

He knew he shouldn't; still, sometimes he leaned back, and peeked through the curtains, and watched them get comfortable under the tree behind the house, and then—well, once they got past clumsy kisses and started getting hot and heavy, he'd find a reason to get up, wander toward the backdoor, open and slam it shut, and scatter them like autumn leaves before a strong wind, hopefully before they did something they might regret, so young.

Especially in the backyard; wasn't that just a little tacky?

Still, even if they were interrupted, Alphonse would roll back into the house like a tidal wave of teenage glee, eyes bright, and lips bee-stung with kisses. He'd gleefully grin at Edward, blushing all the while, and then march up to his room; probably to handle the hormonal rush, the interrupted courtship.

Edward envied his freedom; and more then once, he found himself in awe of his little brother's freedom. He could be so free, and sometimes he could almost feel it touching at him, begging him to let go with it, to go do something that wild, that free. He wanted to be able to do something like that; tangle limbs and lips and know what it was like to not have a responsibility. But Mustang still sends him top secret papers to decode, despite his resignation and dishonorable discharge from the military, and he feels himself drawn back to his studies, his alchemy, as easily as the moon drew the tide.

Winry, bright as the sun, couldn't command him. Even if he wanted to bring himself to feel that rush, the freedom that Al brimmed with, he couldn't let her know the simple fact that he loved her.

All the same, he was here with his papers, his arrays and his desk and his quietude; nothing stirred him in the shadows of his room as he toiled.

Nothing, at least, until he heard Alphonse's quiet laugh behind the house, and he leaned back and peeked through the window again. Longing for that abundance of youth, his misspent on mystic artifacts and the pursuit of higher truth; but at what cost?

Alphonse had regained his youth with Edward's sacrifice. What would he have to give to touch that vibrancy again?