AN: I enjoyed the movie and so here is fic with some of that flavor as a response to a Tumblr fic request for RoyAi . Also a quote that just stuck with me and screamed to be written. I know that it's kind of a popular headcanon in the fandom that Roy and Riza eventually pay for their crimes via execution so I played with the repercussions of that.
Warnings: Royai. Character death and then resurrection due to time manipulation- the Ctrl+Z of character death really.
Disclaimer: I don't own FMA.
"Your fire made mine burn brighter."
The words were etched in a simple slab of granite and it was a personal tribute to a man she had never known. A simple six words that seemed poetic and not out of place on a tombstone, but they seemed so personal and poignant that they added warm to the cold stone and bleak graveyard. She had traced her finger over those words so many times hoping to understand them and finally her alchemy teacher told her something that had driven him to tears to explain the truth behind it.
"After the funeral, those of us closest to him wanted a fitting ceremony. They wouldn't give a him a proper military burial because of the war crimes trial. His conviction meant he was stripped of all military honors and with that the rights to be buried in Central Cemetery and...it wasn't right. They took his life then they took it all again by denying him what he dedicated himself to. So I etched that in the stone with alchemy, and we all privately told him what he meant to us. How Roy Mustang had changed our lives, how he had picked us up from the depths of despair and drove us forward. How, he ignited a passion in all of us. How very sorry we were that this country turned on him because they feared his power and the loss of their own. Your grandfather was a great man and I know he would have chosen a different path had he known how things would have turned out. He was blinded by justice. He just wanted to do the right thing."
It was then that it finally made an impact on her. She had grown up visiting this grave with her grandmother, then came back to visit her own father when he was killed and also laid to rest in disgrace. She and her mother went to Xing under the pretense of learning alchemy, but it had been for their own safety. He grandmother stayed behind, unwilling to leave her family and now she too laid in the ground beside them all.
The Mustang name once said with pride and awe, now it was spoken in hushed whispers by those who feared joining them in death. Amestris was not the country Roy Mustang tried to build, it had slid back into the dark ages of military control and the people were without a hero or options. The people who had been comfortably rich thanks to lucrative military contracts and deals didn't appreciate the reforms pushed on them by the Mustang regime. Power that had been firmly in the hands of certain families for generations was not easily torn from the hands of those who had already done the unthinkable to have it.
So here she stood, the last Mustang. Elizabeth Christine Mustang, daughter of Maes Mustang and granddaughter of Roy and Riza Mustang. Like those before her, she was an alchemist. She had apprenticed with Alphonse Elric and while in Xing had learned alkhestry. Like those before her, she embarked on a journey to save those she loved and her country at a young age of fourteen. With the help of Edward Elric, who had been working on alchemy theories for decades, she had a plan to try to change the past.
Even though the Elrics no longer believed in equivalent exchange, she certainly saw alchemy's law as something set in stone. Quite like these scripted words on this tombstone that had haunted her since the first time her little fingers touched them, there was something that simply could not be ignored. In changing the past there was a very good possibility that she would erase herself from the present. It could all be for nothing because the odds were that she could not convince a man she never met that he needed to listen to her. Even if my some miracle she succeeded then he could still end up a victim of politics. Her father could still end up dying trying to fight for what was right. Her grandmother, might still be shot by a "burglar" in her own home again. There were so many variables, but something needed to be set in motion to try to stop this.
So she read the words again and they gave her the courage to do what had to be done. "Your fire made mine burn brighter." Flame Alchemy was never passed down in the family beyond him, that her grandmother had insisted upon, but the Flame Alchemist had ignited a fire in them all to do the right thing, to protect those they loved and find the courage to put it all above their own life. "I hope, I get the chance to meet you."
Time travel was impossible. The reality of decomposition and reconstruction of a human body was one thing, manipulating time was an entirely other monster. Sure there were alchemists that had tried, usually in an attempt to find a fountain of youth, but there was little success in actually propelling time forward or back. So the task was to find a promising idea of how to transmit anything through time and work from there.
It would have been easier if alchemy wasn't a highly restricted government science. The military had learned to fear the power of alchemists at their disposal ages ago, but they learned to fear the alchemists after the Promised Day. Roy Mustang lead a coup, Edward Elric took down a God. Together they shook the foundation of what powerful men considered the State Alchemists to be: human weapons and military dogs. They were supposed to obey the master and produce results that were both profitable and fearsome, the weren't supposed to use those skills to benefit themselves or the people. Sure there had been men like Solf Kimblee who went on killing sprees, but most alchemists devolved into rabid dogs not rose to be pack leaders. The system had failed to keep them in check, and the lesson was learned.
So once Mustang was out of the way, finally shot and put down, they corrected their mistakes. Alchemy was restricted. Access was granted to those under constant surveillance and books and notes were confiscated. Citizens were encouraged to report on others practicing alchemy for the good of their own safety, in less than a decade the once unrivaled alchemic stronghold of Amestris was without any alchemists that were not on the leash of the military.
It was the story Ed had told her, even he had been forced to stop teaching alchemy and burned his library to avoid it being confiscated. He was under surveillance since he was so outspoken about it and had been so closely connected to Mustang. Thankfully there would be no tarnish to the stories of the Fullmetal Alchemist and love for the 'hero of the people' remained strong enough to keep his family safe. For now.
Elizabeth appreciated the information and the lessons, the connections he set her up with and, most of all, the faith in her to go on this quest alone. It was how she now sat in an old abandoned laboratory, one of the old research facilities that had been part of Ed's own journey, and how she had enough radio equipment to complete her task thanks to Kain Fuery. Even after all these years, the bonds made by Roy Mustang remained strong and she knew now, more than ever, why he was considered to be so dangerous.
Today was a day that was pivotal in the lives of all Mustangs. It was the day that her grandmother Riza had told her was the day her husband finally decided that it was time to push for trail for his war crimes. The day her own father Maes had graduated the military academy. The day that was the decline of Amestris because when the Fuhrer went before parliament and announced he would step down and turn over the country to democratic election, his enemies feared him the most. Returning power to the people was worse than privatizing most of the military holdings, it transferred power away from them and not just money.
Roy Mustang would get his trial, receive his conviction for war crimes, and find his peace in the punishment of death by firing squad. What happened after his soul left his body left more than his immediately family suffering in the darkness. His absence cast a shadow so huge that it covered an entire country. Despite the controlling powers attempts to tarnish his name, she had never met a soul who didn't tell her about how much they missed him and how they wished he never died.
Elizabeth realized she was trying to put off the inevitable and she pulled out her notebook and sketched out the circle that she would need to convert this radio into something more powerful and further reaching than any flame a Mustang had sparked. The lab was still in ruins, equipment littered in every corridor and room made this a garbage pile radio tower. It was also located across the street from Central Command and the Fuhrer's residence.
The time for reflecting on history was over and she placed her hands on the array and energy glowed around the equipment. Once it subsided she sat there and waited, hoping there would be something different to tell her if it worked. She took a deep breath of stale air and put the headphones on and hoped for the best. She had yet to do anything, until she convinced Fuhrer Mustang to change his mind nothing would happen.
She was nervous now. Activating the array was simple, speaking into the radio was another. Ed was confident this transmutation would be successful, but they could not chance doing it more than once. This had to work, it was all she had and it was the product of years of research of one of the most capable alchemists the world had ever known. Elizabeth felt her heart pound as she started moving the jack around to different ports to see if she could get some chatter on the date. A hour progressed and finally she found the records room. Someone was calling down for reports and she heard a date, 'yesterday' was long before she was even born.
It worked. She couldn't believe it! Excitement coursed through her and her hands shook as she tried to find a note in her book about the direct line to the Fuhrer's office provided by Fuery himself. Something he never forgot because her grandmother Riza called all the time. She wasn't sure if she was more excited that this transmutation circle worked or that she would finally be able to hear her grandfather's voice for the first time, not just on archaic old recordings.
"Hi?" Elizabeth said as she heard a voice that sounded a lot like those tapes. Was this him? There was a pause as the man on the other end tried to figure out who was calling the head of the country and didn't know how to do anything but squeak out a weak 'Hi.'"
"This is Fuhrer Mustang, with whom am I speaking?"
He was annoyed. Well that was a great start. "Elizabeth."
That was a weird change in tone. He went from pissed off to flirty instantly. It made her uncomfortable but not nearly as uncomfortable as it was about to get.
"It's been a while since I heard from you Elizabeth. To what do I owe the pleasure?"
Ew, he was definitely flirty and suggestive. He practically purred the words. This was her grandfather!? "I need to talk about what you are going to do tonight."
"Oh Elizabeth! You have always been such a direct and demanding woman. Please do tell, I'd hate to be the victim of your wrath. Well...maybe not. I have always loved your harsh discipline."
She had to take off the headphones and just let loose a whole body shiver. Now she was disgusted and mad! How could he cheat on her grandmother with this woman Elizabeth! She put the headphones back on and said, "Roy Mustang! You are a married man with a wife that loves you and a son that idolizes you!"
"Yes, your wife!"
"Who is this!?"
"Who do you think it is?" She queried.
"Listen, I don't know how you learned of my wife's code name but I promise you that I will find out as soon as I have this line traced and you brought in for questioning!"
"Her code name?" Elizabeth gasped. She was named...after a role playing persona that her grandmother used for phone sex? Maybe she wasn't going to be that upset when she was erased from the future. What the hell!?
"Turn yourself in or run, the end result will be the same. Goodbye."
"No wait!" This hadn't taken the turn she expected. Why did she get so distracted by this? She knew why, despite the alchemy and the dedication to seeing this though she didn't actually believe this was happening. She let herself get distracted. He was mumbling something, the voice getting more distant. He was hanging up. So she screamed, "USO-800!"
There was a long pause and finally he spoke. "What did you just say?"
"USO-800. It was your best friend Maes Hughes's military identification number. It was destroyed from the records after he died. The only person who would remember that, who had high enough clearance to know it...to hear him say it when he was drunk, was you."
"So how do you know it Elizabeth?"
"Because you told it to my father when he was little. When you told him what the combination to the safe was and he asked why that number was significant. You told him and he...told me when I was little. My name is Elizabeth Christine Mustang and I am your granddaughter."
There was a long pause then a chuckle. "Right."
She didn't even believe it herself and she was the one saying it! It was ludicrous! She panicked and started unloading on him, time was not in her favor. "You're going home tonight for his graduation dinner. You're going to tell grandma that you have finally succeeded in doing what you set out to, Amestris is on it's way to a democracy and it doesn't need the Flame Alchemist to reign over it anymore. That you need to die along with the old militaristic regime and you want to be put on trial for Ishval. Please, please don't do it. The world is so much worse without you! Amestris isn't able to stand on it's own. Your family isn't ok. My Dad dies trying to fight against these people who want to drag the country back into the dark ages. Grandma dies because she refuses to let your memory die, knowing it gives hope to the hopeless. Please, please don't hand yourself over to die. As condemned as you feel, you condemn us all."
There was silence and a few short choppy breaths.
"You're the only one I can trust to do this and I don't even know you. I never got to know you but you affected everyone so much that your fire still burns even though they tried to extinguish it. Please Grandpa, please. I know this sounds crazy, but what you are about to do is not good for anyone but your enemies. " She started to cry. This was her one chance and she blew it.
"Elizabeth, was it?"
"How are you making this phone call?"
"The Elrics. I apprenticed with Alphonse, he taught me alchemy. Ed helped me figure out a way to send a message through time, via sound waves. The transmutation array manipulated the transmission frequency on the equipment Kain Fuery gave me. Ed gave me the location to get the best signal. Lab 3. Across the street from your desk. Just...in the future. I still don't believe this is really you."
"Alright Elizabeth, you have my attention. I'll give you fifteen minutes but then I have to leave for dinner."
She started crying which didn't help matters any. He was going to go have dinner with her father! He was still alive. They all were. "What do you want to know?"