velvet mace

The Test

"Spread your legs a little now," came a deep male voice.

Ed swallowed, and moved his knees a couple of inches apart. Despite the hot lights flooding down on him, and the sweat beading on his naked flesh, he shivered. How had he gotten in this position? All he knew was the interview portion of the State Alchemist's exam had taken a bizarre and unexpected turn. If he didn't absolutely need the resources of the Military to restore Al, he would walked out of that room as soon as they'd told him what they wanted. But he did need to pass. He'd made up his mind that he would do whatever it took to get into the military. Even this.

"A little more," came a second voice. Ed peered out into the dark room. He couldn't see anything beyond the harsh lights trained on the bed, but he guessed the same group of men who had grilled him on the chair an hour earlier, were now sitting a few feet away watching this.

It made no sense. Why had they told him to come to this room? When he saw the bed, and they told him to undress and sit on it, he has assumed that this would be the medical exam Tucker had warned him about. But it wasn't. Why on earth would they want to see him doing—that.

"Why—?" he began.

"No talking," came a third voice, this one gruff and vaguely familiar, but Ed couldn't put a name to it.

Ed swallowed and waited, sitting on the lamp heated sheets, his hair down the way one of them had ordered. He had both heels on the edge of the mattress, his knees up. Sweat was starting to trickle now down his thighs, he scratched tentatively, half afraid they'd tell him to stop. Whatever this test was it seemed mostly an exercise in humiliation and obedience.

"Maybe we shouldn't—" demurred a fourth, the only voice that Ed recognized. Mustang. "He's so young."

"You have permission to leave the room, if this bothers you," said the first voice. "It is traditional to test our applicant's mettle in this way." Ed wasn't sure if that last bit was meant for Mustang or for himself. "A good dog is one that takes orders without hesitation."

"Elric, farther apart," came the second voice again.

Ed gritted his teeth spread his thighs widely. He felt uncomfortably exposed.

"That's good, yes, now you may begin."

Begin touching himself, the man meant. They wanted to watch him masturbate, that was the entire test. Of all the crazy-assed things the military could ask him to do—What was the point of seeing if he could do that? What possible military application did that particular activity have? And honestly how could a person fail that sort of test?

"Any time now, Elric," said the first voice.

Ed looked down and carefully grasped his limp cock in his left hand and started to awkwardly stroke himself, using only the tips of his fingers. It felt good of course, even under these bizarre circumstances. His nerves didn't care that there were who knows how many eyes on him. The rest of him did, though. A lot.

"Dear god, have you never masturbated?" said a new voice. "Do you need someone to show you?"

There was a gruff round of laughter at that.

Ed blushed and began sliding his hand in a quicker manner, the way he did when he was at home. No one had to show him what to do.

Sensation grew keener as his cock hardened. He thought he heard someone suck in a breath, but it was hard to tell over the sound of his own hammering heart. He used brisk strokes with a lightly curled hand, feeling the gentle chafe of skin against skin. Then paused to squeeze the base of the shaft. He was fully hard, now, and his cock felt hot in his hand. He felt the tickle of precum at the tip, he ran his hand over the sensitive head to wipe away the slippery fluid. Then, he moved his hand back down over the shaft again,

The audience was quiet enough for him to almost ignore their existence. His hand was sweating, and with every stroke his skin stuck and pulled in a slightly frustrating way. The pressure of his hand, the friction and pull, mixed with the weight of engorgement, in a very satisfying way. Pleasure was building, and every movement made the urge to continue stronger. It wouldn't take long to give these men what they wanted to see.

He started to breathe faster, his eyes closed against the painfully bright lights. Let's get this over quick, he thought.

"Pace yourself," came the first voice. "We don't want you finishing this too quickly."

Damn. He slowed down, sliding only his fingertips over the shaft, ignoring the crying need to be firmer, to go faster, the almost painful need to rub that pleasurable itch out. Gradually he fell back down from the edge of orgasm. As he did reason restored itself and he once again became horribly aware of his unseen audience, and just how vulnerable he was in that state of mindless decadence.

"Thumb your nipple," said the second voice, slightly out of breath.

Ed wasn't sure what the unseen man meant by that but he let go of his cock to reach up and placed his thumb on his nipple.

The room echoed with male laughter. "You are going to have to be more specific with him."

"For God's sake," said Mustang again, "He's only twelve."

"You are dismissed, Mustang," came the first voice.

Ed saw a vague dark shadow moving in the background, then a sudden rectangle of brightness appeared as the door opened to outside hall. Ed saw Mustang, silhouetted against the glare. There was just enough light to make out a vaguely disgusted and regretful look on his face. Then the door shut, and Ed's vision narrowed back to himself, and his softening penis.

"Put your hand back on your cock, Elric," came the second voice again, amusement lightening his words. "You are going South on us."

Ed pressed his lips together and flushed harder. Fear died down as stronger emotions took over. Embarrassment and anger made his muscles tense and his body shake. It was one thing to have to do this strange, personal stuff in front of all these strangers. It was quite another to have them laugh at him while he did it.

"I think I'm done," he said, closing his legs and leaning forward to find his clothes. He didn't deserve this. This was stupid.

"Are you giving up on being an State Alchemist this easily?" asked the first voice. "You must not really want it. Very well, you fail."

Ed's stomach bottomed out. "Wait!" said Ed. "I do, I—Give me another chance."

"Very well," the first voice said again, with an indulgent chuckle.

Reluctantly Ed sat back down and scooted back until he could assume the exposed position again. Almost defiantly, he grabbed his cock and started masturbating. His fist was tight this time, and his skin stretched and pulled. He was being rough enough that it hurt a little, but there was nowhere else to direct his anger.

He needed this. He had to become a State Alchemist. No one else had the money, the resources, the authority, to get him what he needed. Al needed this. And if Al needed it, and he could do it, then he was damn well going to suck it up and do it. He was not going to fail at masturbation of all things.

"This isn't a race, applicant," came the third voice again. "Take your time."

"Yes," the second chimed in again. "Try to make it look like you are enjoying this."

But I'm not, thought Ed, but he let out a deep breath slowed down. Closing his eyes he tried to ignore the people in the room again and went back to concentrating on the feeling of his flesh against his cock.

The room went silent again. Ed sucked in breaths and held them a little trying to calm himself, and not let his anger get in the way. He shifted just a bit uncomfortably and tried to find the right rhythm, not too fast, not too slow. He pretended he was alone in his room, and he had all the time in the world. No pressure.

It was working. He breathed deeper now, shifting his hand from hard strokes to lighter, tickling ones, drawing out the sensation. He felt the faint vein ridges under his fingertips, slid his palm over the head..

"Let's try that nipple again," said the second voice, breaking his concentration. "Use your other hand, the automail one. Pinch it, not enough to hurt, just until it feels good."

Ed felt a pang of fear at the idea of using his automail hand on such a delicate spot. He'd had the prosthesis for only a year, and his fine motor control still left a lot to be desired. He knew how much pressure those smooth metal digits could produce.

"Did you hear me?"

I can do this. Ed winced and carefully, delicately brought together his automail fingers on his nipple, using the most minimal force he could. He hissed at the sudden coolness against his hot flesh. The biofeedback was terrible, and the touch felt more like he'd gotten caught in some object than being pinched by his own hand.

"Now rub in a circle."

Ed felt a little more confident doing that. This wasn't something that would have occurred to him to do. It felt interesting, kinda good. His nipple was starting to send little tweaks of pleasure through his chest.

"Now put your automail fingers in your mouth and suck on them. Pretend like you've just dipped them in honey and are sucking them off."

Ed opened his eyes, and tried to peer past the floodlights into the darkness of the room. These guys were nuts. Shaking his head a little he stuck a finger into his mouth and pretended to suck honey off of it. The automail tasted metallic and faintly acrid, but it was very smooth, and polished and hard, and it felt vaguely interesting to explore the rounded joints with his tongue.

Strangely enough that got the room more stirred up than anything else he'd done so far. His "interviewers" started ordering him around, telling him to lick his fingertips and thrust three of his fingers slowly in and out of his mouth, to purse his mouth and suck on them like ice pop.

They seemed content to watch him taste his fingers for a lot longer than Ed thought they would. Finally the second voice spoke out again, "I want to see him finger himself, do you think that's doable?"

Finger myself?

"I don't see why not," said the third voice. "A single finger won't hurt him."

"With the automail though?" the second came back. "I want to see it with the automail, and I'd rather it be at least two."

"That's acceptable," said the First. "But not dry. We don't want to hurt the poor boy now. Did any of you remember to bring any lubricant?"

"I did," came the third voice.

"Oh, you are a godsend, Gran."

Ed jerked a bit as something flew through the air and landed on the bed next to him. Ed took the automail fingers out of his mouth and reached over and picked it up. It was a small glass bottle with a clear pale liquid flowing thickly inside. He peered out at his audience again.

"Open the bottle and pour it over your hands. Don't be shy with it."

Ed opened the bottle and emptied it on his hands. The liquid was slippery and thick and ran down his forearms and dripped over his thighs. Yuck.

"Don't stop touching yourself now," said the third voice, Gran.

Ed put his hand back on his cock. This time his fingers and palm slid freely and almost effortlessly over his cock. The friction was perfect. No pain, no burn, just soothing and stimulating and it was hard not to let his hand race up and down his length.

"Whoa there, slow down, Elric," said the first voice, amused again. "We want you to reach down and touch your ass with your automail."

"My ass?" Ed asked.

"Yes, reach down and push a finger in."


The hidden men laughed again. "Yes, Elric inside."

Yuck, Ed thought again, but he was past questioning the madness of these requests. He focused on the mechanics of doing it, finally figuring that the best way was to kneel and reach around from the back. With the tip of a slippery automail finger he touched the ring of muscle. It felt damn weird. He felt a slight sting of pain as he pressed in. Maybe they wanted him to hurt himself, to dirty his automail, to shame himself in front of them.

He wished they'd just let him finish up and get it over.

"This isn't working," said the second voice, with a trace of annoyance. "I can't see what he's doing."

"Applicant," said Gran, "Try resting your back against the wall."

Ed pulled the finger free with a bit of effort. It was as if his butt had grabbed hold of the automail and was reluctant to give it up. He felt a bit a relief when the intrusion was removed and didn't look forward to shoving it back in again. It wasn't much of a break, but Ed took his time pushing back up against the wall, and played a bit dumb while they explained how exactly they wanted him. Eventually though he'd found position where he slouched against the wall and had both his legs pulled up and spread widely. He tried reaching over his thigh to reach his butt, but the audience quickly objected that they could no longer see. So instead Ed was force his automail palm under his right buttock to get an angle acceptable to everyone.

"Now, put that finger back in. Slowly," said the second voice.

Like I'd shove it in quickly, thought Ed. Bracing himself he began pushing the oily metal finger back in. Finding the right amount of force was hard and when the digit finally popped past the muscle, it slammed all the way to the base. The shock of the sudden presence of metal against his colon made him suck in a deep breath. He held still until he could manage the sensation. It didn't precisely hurt but it felt distinctly out of place and somehow dangerous, and there was an embarrassing bathroom quality to the feeling.

"I said slowly, Elric." The audience laughed again.

Damn it his control with his automail was still not that great, didn't these guys know that? It took most people three years to reach peak function with these prostheses; he was doing pretty well for not quite thirteen months.

"Don't forget your cock," reminded the first voice. "Try rubbing that, and it will feel better."

Ed had forgotten about his cock, but now went back to it. The two sensations fought each other, the slick-friction-pressure of his pistoning hand, against the cool stretched incompleteness of his automail finger.

"Now start moving that finger, just like you did with your mouth." Ed slid the finger out a fraction of an inch and then back in. "More," the second voice was impatient. "We want to see it moving."

Carefully Ed experimented with longer strokes. Eventually his audience seemed satisfied. He tried not to think about what he was doing or what it might mean to those watching. Whenever his mind strayed in that direction he felt uncomfortable hurt feelings. Damn it he wasn't going to blubber like a little boy in front of these people. No, it was better to concentrate on the physical sensations, and leave the emotional ones alone until he had some privacy. Shove them away, drown them deep, the way he had during other crises, other scary vulnerable moments.

His audience was distinctly restless now. He heard gasps and the rustle of clothing. "Put another finger in," ordered the second voice. "Slide them together." This voice was distinctly excited. Ed wondered if maybe this guy was jacking off as well. Maybe they all were.

Ed pushed the second finger in. He again felt a moment of pain as his sphincter cried out against the abuse, but Ed ignored that. Pain was nothing. Once he adjusted, it didn't feel bad at all. In fact it seemed to add something, a kind of an indescribable tension that made the friction against his cock feel keener. And there was something oddly pleasurable about the way the automail didn't feel like a part of him. Something complicated and enticing about being at the mercy of being touched by something other. He closed his eyes again and wrinkled up his face, alternating between grimaces and gasps.

"Faster," urged the second voice. "Push those fingers all the way in."

Ed complied, moving both his hands faster, and suddenly he realized that he couldn't stop, he couldn't even slow down. He'd found perfect amount of force for his automail, the right level of tightness for his hand. His limbs had taken on a will of their own and he absolutely had to keep moving. He'd past the point of no return and—

The first spike of pleasure made him whine. It was too much, too intense, but before he could recover the second one seized him, pulled him down, then a third, a fourth and finally a fifth, just slightly delayed, slightly less, then the pleasure receded. Ed breathed hard, coughing slightly on his own spit. He pulled his fingers from his ass, not waiting for permission. His hands were sticky; he was sweaty. The ecstasy was dying down to a exhausted pithed feeling. He was empty. All used up.

The applause made Ed stiffen. He became suddenly very self-aware. He had thought maybe there were only three people in the room, but clearly there were more than that. Others had been watching quietly.

"Excellent show," came the first voice. "Good job."

The door opened in the back of the room. Ed blinked as he saw four, five, six—no more figures leave.

The door finally shut. "Why?" he asked the empty room.

"It's just a hazing, Elric," said the first voice, almost gently. Ed jerked. "Don't read too much into it. Congratulations, you pass your interview. One more step to go, and you will be one of us. You will find a restroom through the door on your right. You may wash up before putting on your clothes. Leave when you are ready, you won't be disturbed."

He heard the man cross the room and then the door opened a final time. Ed caught a quick glimpse of a stiff broad man with a mustache and an eye patch before the door shut and he was again surrounded by darkness.