This will probably end up being a prologue to We Are Just Screaming. Which, by the way, is my next project after the next chapter of And Return to Nothing. I blame having to come up with even weirder ideas when RPing with Vikki to make Roy/Ed interesting again. List of thanks: Vikki, for RPing with me. Sol, for pointing out errors.
Ed hated taking orders from Colonel Roy Mustang. Hated it, hated it, and, well, hated it. Some of the stuff he was asked to investigate was truly stupid shit. A bakery, for instance. Ed had come back covered in goopy dough after that one. It wasn't his fault it exploded. He had no idea the bags of flour were there.
And then there was the chocolate shop...
And the candy store...
He was starting to think that Mustang had either a sweet tooth or an even more twisted sense of humor than he realized. At least it wasn't sex stuff. Yet. Ed thanked anything that would listen to an atheist alchemist such as himself.
And he was just stalling. Ed lifted his chin, and proceeded to put a few more dents into the Colonel's door with his automail arm.
Ed mentally groaned. When Mustang sounded like that, he usually had the "Just got laid" smile on his face and proceeded to tease him even more about... well, anything. He tried to keep the thought off his face and entered the office. "Sir." Oops, sounded pissed. Better not give Mustang anymore ammo. "You asked for me?" Better.
For once, the Colonel was unprepared. Ed allowed a small amused thought at the sight. "You're a bit early," Mustang told him, still flipping through files. "But yes. Psiren appears to be loose again."
"Psiren?" Not again. Ed sighed, throwing himself onto the couch. "What profession is she trying now, and what is she after?"
A smirk. Ed didn't like the smirk. Not only was it amused, but it had an undercurrent that made him want to squirm like a naughty boy caught with the cookies in his hand. Mustang looked through the papers, then handed him the finished file. "We have determined the next target, however..." Ed almost squirmed again at the small smile. "Where it is currently being kept..."
Ed frowned, liking the laughter less than the smile. "Spit it out, Colonel."
Mustang fought the laughter down, his eyes shiny with the effort. "There has been the thought Psiren would not think to look at a rather crowded bar." He blinked, thinking. "Hmm, last time I was there, it was less a bar and more a club..."
"Just get to the point, Colonel."
With a visible effort, Mustang reverted back to his professional, but still amused self. "You will need to frequent a bar named "Blue Fiction" to watch the regular customers and the staff in case Psiren finds out where the painting has gone."
Bad smirk. Bad, bad, bad smirk. But at least he knew now the name of the bar and what Psiren was after. Ed watched the smirk turn from bad to worse. It couldn't be that bad of a bar... he was still a teen, after all. If it was a nasty one, meant for adults that can drink and... do other things, they wouldn't even let Ed in, would they?
"It would be obvious if Psiren shows up. Not many women frequent this bar. However, it is mostly a place where men go to find a one-night bedmate."
There was a part of Ed's brain rapidly putting the two together and coming up with more than he even realized he knew. Fortunately for his sanity, that part was easily ignored. "Bedmate... that means..."
Mustang nodded. "Yes. The majority of men are looking for sex. However, a few are looking for something longer, and couples are not rare."
"And you're going to send me in there."
"Not alone," the Colonel amended. "First, you are still young. Young men are allowed in as long as they are accompanied by an older male."
"What," Ed cut in, feeling uneasy, "not an older woman?"
"This is a gay bar, Fullmetal. Women, as I've said, stand out."
Ed didn't scream. Didn't stutter. In fact, didn't move at all. Then, he took a long, shuddering breath. "Gay bar. Right. When the real Colonel comes in, let me know. Until then, I'm going to get some rest." He started to get up.
Mustang's voice rang out as a whip crack. "Fullmetal, sit your skinny butt down."
He sat down.
"I understand your reluctance. However, you are the only one that has managed to capture Psiren. Naturally, you were the first choice to capture her again." Mustang started to stand, limbs moving as if restless.
"Fine." Ed leaned back on the couch. "Who am I going with? You?" He knew there was a fat chance of that. Mustn't let the ladies know Colonel Mustang went to a gay bar. The problem was he couldn't think of anyone on Mustang's staff that would be willing to play along.
And Ed was really starting to loathe The Smirk. "That is one of the choices. I believe Lt. Colonel Hughes would not mind escorting you as well."
"Colonel? He wouldn't be able to manage it." Ed fell silent, realizing what Mustang was saying about him. Close on the heels of that was the memory of the Colonel saying the words "the last time I was there." There were two choices available at this point. Spaz out over the implication that he could pass as a gay man, or spaz out over having to pretend to be gay with Mustang.
The Smirk started to fall as Ed chose none of the options and instead looked up calmly. Mustang's face was easily readable at this point, and it said very loudly "Oh shit." He cleared his throat, and started to say, "Fullmetal, this is not..."
"What do I need and when do we leave?"
Unfortunately, Mustang had years of dealing with unexpected twists. "You will need appropriate clothing. Nothing too translucent or tight. You will be posing as my lover, thus people would expect you not to dress as if you were hunting."
"Actively looking for a bedmate. Talk with Hughes. He should remember what would work. Do not put this off. I would wish to leave in three days."
It wasn't a dismissal, but Ed decided it was almost good enough. "Fine. But kiss me or touch my ass in public and I will tell Lieutenant Hawkeye where you keep the picture of her when we get back."
"How did you...?"
"We all have to have our secrets."
Mustang didn't sigh, per se, but let out a very heavy breath. "Deal. Dismissed."
Ed almost left the office, grinning at the proper use of Mustang's fear/admiration of Hawkeye, when something occurred to him. "Hughes isn't gay."
"That is true."
"Why did he go to a gay bar, then?"
"That didn't mean he didn't experiment when he was younger."
Okeydokey, that was it. He was going to have nightmares about the Lt. Colonel and Mustang together for months to come. Ed muttered something under his breath and ran out.
It may hurt, but biting his tongue was much better than Ed asking if Mustang had any short-sleeved shirts. He remembered how humid Aquaroya was. If Mustang wanted to wear a long-sleeved casual shirt with black slacks, that was his problem and Ed didn't have to say a damned thing.
The Colonel was going over last minute reports. And there was nothing to do. Ed sighed, reminded of why he hated train trips for the most part. Even with Al, they were boring as hell. Unfortunately, he couldn't voice this complaint around Mustang. He would enjoy teasing Ed about his whining.
"Fullmetal." Mustang didn't even look up from the papers, but his entire temple region seemed to twitch. "If you are bored, perhaps you should think about how to practice your acting skills."
"Why?" Ed drawled, going to lay down.
Mustang started to put away his report very carefully. "Do you really wish to attract suspicion?"
"Colonel, you have ordered me to pretend to be gay. And not with Havoc or Fury, but with you." Ed placed a lot of scorn on the last word. "We barely get along. I don't think either of us are that good of actors."
Glee filled the short boy as the Colonel looked uncomfortable at Ed's sudden calmness. "There were not that many choices," he began.
"Bull, Colonel. There were plenty of choices. You did not have to volunteer to tarnish your ever so perfect record of sleeping solely with women. You could have even sent someone else out there, and left me alone." Ed settled into a more comfortable position. "That is, unless you just couldn't pass up the opportunity to flirt with me and actually have me play along."
"Have been flirting with me since day one, Colonel. It's creepy."
Ed snickered as Mustang snapped his mouth shut, looking offended. "Fullmetal, I assure you, if I had wanted another male, it would not be a short blond such as yourself."
"Who are you..." Ed trailed off, shaking with rage. "I am not..." Must not kill Colonel must not kill Colonel... "NOT SHORT!"
Kill laughing Colonel.
Leather was a theme here. Ed cast a quick look around the bar, tugging on his own tight leather pants. He wanted to go back to the hotel and find the loosest pair of pants he had just so the other guys would stop looking at his groin and ass. And maybe a shirt to put under the vest. It was more than "creepy" for Mustang to be looking at the bare skin under the vest.
Ed winced as Mustang pulled him close as he ordered yet another shot of whiskey. "So," he said casually to the bartender as he stroked Ed's hip (Kill later plead insanity hide Colonel's body), "I hear you hired another woman."
The bartender rolled his eyes as he poured the shot. "You know, Mustang, your boyfriend is right there." Twitch. "He may know you're a bisexual son-of-a-bitch, but I don't want to deal with another messy breakup."
"Oh, I know," Ed cut in, voice sickenly sweet. "But Roy's all mine. Aren't you, Roy?" The act made him want to vomit all over Mustang's nice blue shirt. With long sleeves. Couldn't forget the long sleeves.
Mustang laughed, and pressed his lips against Ed's ear. The boy nearly snarled at him when he heard "Norma is the woman on duty. The one cleaning up. She was hired when Hughes and I used to visit."
Add another month of Hughes/Mustang nightmares... "So the other woman..." he murmured, trying to make it look like they were flirting with each other. Ed doubted it was working.
"Okay, you two. Break it up. The sugar level is already too high tonight." Ed could have kissed the bartender's feet for that. Mustang pulled away, slowly. "Clara will be in tomorrow. Piss off your boyfriend, and you won't be allowed in here anymore."
Insert involuntary twitch. At least no one was calling him short.
"And go home, Mustang! You've had enough to knock a cow on its ass."
"Yes, Roy," Ed drawled, taking great joy in plucking the glass from his hand. "Let's go home." He could act. He could pretend... "Please?" Ed purred, trying to look seductive.
Apparently it worked, because the bartender howled. "Man, you're lucky. Looks like a firebrand, and about the right height to suck you off."
Right after Mustang stopped breathing, Ed was going after the bartender. Nothing too bad. Just a little torture. The scars wouldn't even be that visible.
Before Ed could make the thought obvious on his face, Mustang stood and wobbled. "C'mon, Edward," he purred back as he threw cash on the bar.
Ed was about ready to let the Colonel fall flat on his face when he realized that action would probably result in a major punishment. Most likely taking care of Elysia after she was hyped up on sugar followed by listening to her father gush about how good a girl she is. Which, as any babysitter knows, is bullshit.
So Ed attempted to support Mustang's weight on the way back to the hotel. The only solace he had was that Mustang was too damned drunk to say anything about his height, looks, or proposed sexuality. But blood wasn't that hard to get out of leather, was it?
Ed grinned as a pillow hit the wall about two inches to his left and a foot above him. "Not a morning person, huh, Colonel?"
"Kindly fuck off, Fullmetal."
"Fullmetal?" Ed gasped dramatically. "You were calling me by name yesterday!" The grin could have eaten shit whole.
Mustang groaned, putting a sleeved arm over his face. "Is that all?"
"Nope. I have orders from Hawkeye to make sure you don't treat this like a vacation. That means getting up before noon, showering, and dear fuck Colonel do you shower in a shirt?"
The man played with one cuff, looking away. "It is none of your concern, Fullmetal," Mustang told him, making completely sure his cuffs were firmly fastened.
"You've gotten me interested, Colonel. You didn't want to do that."
He glared at Ed, then dropped his gaze to his covered arms. "You do not flaunt your automail," he said coolly. "Nor the scars that came with it. I too do not wish to flaunt these scars."
Ed blew a few stray bangs out of the way on a frustrated breath. "Yeah, but you've seen mine. Now, come on. I want to see what makes the infamous Flame Alchemist hide away his body."
"I really hate that title, you know."
Mustang slipped two fingers under a cuff. "Many alchemists are ashamed of their second name now. Of course, your reason may be due to the fact people see the tall armored person as the older brother, thus as the Fullmetal Alchemist, while the shorter one is the younger brother."
"You're now right under my dad on my 'to kill' list. Stop calling me short!"
Mustang chuckled as he unbuttoned one sleeve. "You still have not learned your lesson about keeping your temper." He started to push the cloth up.
Ed eyed the scars as they appeared. "And? Burn scars. You're the Flame Alchemist, Colonel. You play with fire."
Colonel Roy Mustang, the Flame Alchemist, Edward Elric's superior and antagonist, and arguably the first person that an eleven-year-old Ed had once admired flipped his palm face-up.
Ed traced the newly revealed scar with his eyes before looking back up at Mustang's face. "You tried to kill yourself," he said, voice flat.
Mustang savagely thrust his sleeve down again. "No, Fullmetal. If I had ever gotten that low, there would be little more left than charred bone fragments." His fingers quickly buttoned the cuff.
"You sound like you've given it serious thought." Ed sat in a nearby chair as the words left his mouth, the tone soft and coaxing.
"After the war..." Mustang's face visibly darkened, his 29 years lining the skin around his eyes and mouth. "After being commanded to kill several thousand innocents, it's hard not to consider it."
"So..." Ed considered the long, thin scar that marred the inside of Mustang's arm. "What about that? Slipped with the knife while cooking?"
Mustang let out a bitter laugh. "Hughes told you about our first night in Aquaroya."
"I still don't want to know how the cereal caught on fire, Colonel."
A real laugh escaped Mustang's lips. "That one was Hughes's fault." He stood, starting to unbutton his shirt.
"Colonel..." Ed closed his eyes, trying not to see more. "Our deal?"
"Said nothing about getting dressed in front of you," Mustang said, amused.
"Then I'm out of here." Ed started to scramble out, eyes still closed.
Mustang let him trip over the legs of the chair and table before speaking up. "Fullmetal," he said quietly, "I have many political enemies that would only love it if I turned up dead with a slit wrist. And I learned that day that some of them are women."
Ed considered this, then turned his head to say over his shoulder, "If only it taught you not to sleep with everything under the sun."
"I haven't tumbled you yet."
"Thank God for that."
"You don't believe in God."
"I'm about to start."
Ed grunted as he tried to button his pants. He wished he had no idea leather could get that tight. Sad thing was, he knew from last night that he could breathe in those pants. He looked down at the skin showing between his very tight shirt and very tight pants, and shuddered. Even worse was that his automail was showing. Ed looked up into the mirror, idly noticing that he looked tired, and, well, worried.
"Okay," he said aloud, trying to put his thoughts in order. "I've known for a while that Mustang flirts with anything with a pulse. And sometimes I wonder about that part. Him flirting with me isn't anything new. I've known for a while that he's the Flame Alchemist, which lends itself to burn scars. I've known for a while that he fought in the Ishval war, and still feels some guilt about that. Why is it different to know that he has put serious thought into killing himself? Why is it different to know he has a scar right over a vein in his arm?"
Ed pulled his hair back into a ponytail, strands of hair at the verge of being pulled out. "Why does this mission bother me? I like girls. Winry is hot. Why is it that I feel bad knowing that Mustang wants to kill himself?"
He almost wished his reflection had the answer, because he was about to go out with Mustang back to Blue Fiction. And that thought still made him uncomfortable. "I shouldn't feel bad about it. He's just my superior. He's not a friend. Fucking ow!" Ed started to pull a few strands of hair out of his joints.
"Fullmetal, if you're through talking to yourself, shall we go?"
Ed focused his gaze to what was reflected over his shoulder, noticing that Mustang was standing in the threshold. "I still hate that name... Mustang."
"Hm." The man tilted his head, obviously taking in the curves of Ed's ass. Ed noticed with a squirm that Mustang's shirt was rather see-through. And his pants were nearly as tight as Ed's. "So I see, Edward."
Ed looked back at his own face, focusing on his golden eyes. "It's almost not worth wearing a shirt if it's that translucent."
"Are you saying you would rather I be topless?" Mustang asked, his amused voice coming closer.
"Who's saying that?! I..." Ed trailed off as Mustang placed his hand lightly on his human arm. "Don't."
The light touch moved to Ed's chin, stroking it up. "Don't..."
Mustang's voice brushed across the boy's ear. "Don't what?"
He couldn't look away from the mirror. "I..." Mustang's other hand stroked his bare midriff. "Our deal?"
"Do you really wish to hold onto that now?" Mustang's lips were so close to his neck.
There was something about the sight of a dark head bent down against pale skin. Ed watched, detached as if this was happening to someone that just looked like him, as Mustang slid the tips of his fingers under the waistband of the leather. Then, he lifted his head, looking into the reflection of Ed's eyes. "You look as if you're thinking of something."
"I think I'm having a nightmare."
Mustang looked down, brushing one hand across the tight blue fabric that masqueraded as Ed's shirt. "Edward... I'm not certain you would call this a 'nightmare'..."
"It feels weird, Mustang. You touching me like this... I don't know."
Slowly, the hand barely in his pants lifted. It tilted Ed's head towards Mustang's, breaking the eye contact he had with the mirror. "First name."
"What?" The word tumbled out on a confused breath.
"Use my first name." His lips were barely touching Ed's.
Mustang pulled back slightly, frowning. "Why must you make this so difficult?"
"Maybe because I don't want it?" Ed stepped away, starting to feel more like himself. "No offence, Mustang. You're probably very attractive. But you're my superior officer first, and maybe friend second."
Mustang looked at him. Then smirked. Ed really hated The Smirk. "As you say, Edward. However, there is one little loophole about the deal you made with me."
"And what is that?"
"I'm not to kiss you or touch your rear in public. We're not in public." With that, Mustang pressed his lips against Ed's in a mockery of a kiss. Ed froze, eyes wide. In a way, he wanted to push Mustang off, find the nearest telephone with a connection to Hawkeye's office, and let her know about that picture. But...
He whimpered slightly as Mustang's knee pressed gently into his groin. The answering bulge against his hip kept him from spinning completely off and kissing Mustang back. There was something he had to remember... not the deal, because technically, Mustang was keeping to the parameters. Somewhere they had to...
Ed pushed Mustang off, wiping his mouth. "Unless you want Psiren to escape again, quit molesting me!"
Mustang blinked, his pupils dilated. "Psiren." He straightened up, running his hands through his hair. "Right." Ed noticed that his shirt was raised slightly and showed off a nicely toned stomach. "Then shall we go?"
"No." Ed glared up at the Colonel. "You'll get to molest me again, and I feel like I'm on display there."
Surprised, Mustang let out a little laugh. "Most likely because you are, since you are young and quite pretty. Most people don't see anyone as pretty as you, Edward. Male or female."
That was more than Ed needed to know. "Don't start. Let's just get this over with. Psiren should be there, right?"
"Yes, but tonight may be our last night. There's a rumor that she's resigning tonight."
Keeping an eye on Psiren was hard when Mustang would keep pushing him out of sight. "Okay, look," he said directly in the man's ear as he held on to the shirt for balance, "if I'm going to be of any help, I'm going to have to see her."
"She recognizes you, Edward," Mustang told him, gaze slanted towards where Psiren was. "And I doubt she'll try for the painting knowing you're here."
"Why don't we just get her now?"
"Because it is crowded today, and arresting a bartender in the middle of all of this would cause a nasty riot."
Damn Mustang and him making sense. "Okay, but..."
Mustang's dark eyes narrowed as he pulled Ed closer. "Play along. And I am sorry."
Ed didn't even have time to draw a breath to say "Sorry for what?" when Mustang proceeded to kiss him with no little passion. True, kissing him at Blue Fiction did violate the terms of their deal, and was so damn embarrassing that Ed couldn't start to describe it, but there was something else nagging him.
Mustang was tasting every part of the boy's mouth with tongue and teeth. It should have been hot, sexy, arousing, whatever word wanted to be applied there. Instead, it was... rather empty. The stupid kiss Mustang gave him before was more arousing that this.
Finally, he pulled away. "Psiren has just left the room."
Blink. Blink. "Guh?" Not what he was expecting.
"Really, Edward, you expected me to ignore the fact we are on a mission just to kiss you?" Mustang traced Ed's jaw line gently. "We should be able to arrest Psiren now."
"Stop doing that." Ed pushed himself out of Mustang's arms, not wanting to shiver under his touch. "I'll get into the rant about how I wasn't gay before this later. Right now, we have a thief in a cat suit to catch."
The Colonel looked over Ed, then nodded. "Then get ready." He started off to a back room, leaving Ed to stumble off after him.
"Oi, Mustang, stop purposely getting the paths of people," he muttered under his breath, trying to see where the man had gone next. The door he was heading towards was close by... and slightly open... most likely, Mustang went in there. Ed raised his hands, about to clap them as he pushed the door completely open.
Psiren was holding a small frame, admiring whatever was on it. She had just looked up in surprise when Ed clapped his hands together and slammed them onto the ground.
"Hey, Clara," Ed grinned once the floor raised to immobilize her feet and cover access to the array on her chest.
"Edward. It's nice seeing you again."
"Wish I could say the same." Ed took the painting out of her hands. "Wow... real rubies?"
"And sapphires. You've grown quite a bit."
"Of course I... who are you calling a shrimp?!"
Mustang chuckled behind them. "I would have expected more of a fight from you, Psiren."
"Psiren?!" Ed turned to see who made that remark. The man next to Mustang in the dark gray military uniform looked surprised. "But..." Ed knew he couldn't keep the sarcastic look off his face. "Never mind. Psiren, you are under arrest."
That was all Ed needed to hear. There was a back door. Fresh air would be nice, despite the fact it was a hot, humid night. He stepped out as Psiren chuckled, closing the door behind him.
Ed looked up at the next building.
"Stupid Colonel. Stupid doubt about sexuality."
The door next to him opened. "Fullmetal, you will need to give your statement."
Mustang closed the door behind him. "Edward..."
"Will you try to kiss me after this?"
That managed to take Mustang by surprise. "No. I value my porn collection."
Ed snorted, crossing his arms over his midriff. "Hawkeye's still going to hear about this."
"I didn't doubt it."
"I don't want you, Colonel. I like girls. I like Winry. I'm not gay."
"Whatever you say." Mustang started back in. "Though Miss Rockbell is a rather beautiful woman."
Ed proceeded to hit the back of his head against the wall. He was not aroused by the Colonel's voice, damn it!