Fullmetal Alchemist belongs to some people who aren't me. ;o;

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In This Graceless Age

by Shimegami-chan

w w w . shimegami . com / ichijouji

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Her steps are as smooth as flowing water; light and subdued, heeled sandals tapping gently on polished hardwood floor. She looks radiant, charming each delegate she is passed to, smiling at all the right times. She dances as though her entire body is comprised of air, a graceful figure in a graceless age.

They do not know that she has a pistol concealed at the small of her back and another strapped to her thigh. All they see is a pretty face and striking burgundy eyes; charming them thoroughly, foolhardily. If her true self were to be revealed, could it even be believed?

She whirls past her commanding officer, who stands among politicians and comrades with a martini and an air ofcomplacency. One of the older men watches the dancers with envy. "Your First Lieutenant, isn't she, Mustang?"

"She is," he confirms.

"Quite the talented dancer. Pretty, too."

He nods. She is talented in many other fields - he wants to tell them about her as sharpness of wit, perfect aim, and flawless perception. Still, he knows that they must think she is only here to look pretty on the arms of various politicians and officers (is he jealous? no, that couldn't be). But the reason for her presence at this affair is here to gain information, and to watch her colonel out of the corner of her eye. She is, as always, his backup - she ensures that he does not drink too much wine, does not goad the delegates with his cockiness. He has never asked her for this service, of course, simply to be there with her pistol occasionally brushing against her opposite thigh, but he appreciates it all the same.

He wishes, as the men watch his subordinate with open admiration, that he could be dancing with her instead.

Her partner is a rough-looking man with a leering smile and beefy hands that seem to engulf her small frame. She smiles at him sweetly - he does not know that she could throw him over her shoulder and lay him on his back on the dance floor. He does not know, nor do the mingling delegates, that she could kill them in an instant. They dance on. That man only sees, as they all do, a pretty face with an inviting smile. She glances over her shoulder at Mustang - she does not use that smile for her commanding officer. Why should she?

He turns his attention instead to his quarry - there is no need for him to openly acknowledge her gaze. After all, he knows about the pistol at the small of her back, and he loves her anyway.

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Author's Note: Feedback appreciated, as always.

-edit- Oh my god I hate the QuickEdit system. I must have re-uploaded this story eight or nine times before it stopped making spacing errors. -.- My apologies to anyone who read the first time around.