Chapter 5:Le Finale Grande
A/N: Wow. This went over really well. I was almost tempted to make it longer, but that always happens to my stories, so I'm glad I already had this written. I love you, my many reviewers! You all get imaginary, autographed cookies from me! Don't you feel special?
I'm sorry about the angsty bits. I try to leave them out, but there are some things I just can't write with a smile. Itsy-bitsy Wrath having a mental breakdown is one of them. Another is Elysia mourning her father, so don't read this chapter if you're in a suicidal mood.
NEW UPDATE: By popular demand, there is now a sequel to this story, "Trying To Be Human." I wrote it for you, so you'd better read it.
That's enough of me talking.
When they returned, Lust, Sloth, and Gluttony were all extremely wasted.
"HEY! It's the HAPPY COUPLE!" giggled Sloth. "We were just talking about you!"
"You were such a cute kid, puppy," Lust elaborated. "His hair used to be really long, you know, Elly."
"Ask him about that scar on his arm. It's a great story! You see, there was this... um... I forget," Gluttony finished lamely.
"You guys were drinking without me?" Envy asked angrily, grabbing the bottle and chugging straight from it. "What ever happened to common courtesy?"
Elly decided not to say anything. She went up stairs to finish washing her hair. Reg tried to take the alcohol away, but he knew it would be a waste. He just hoped they wouldn't reveal anything to Elly.
"Wrath, you know, I almost got married once," Lust lectured with a giggle. "Nice guy. Lenny. Or something'."
Reg had never heard of Lenny, except as a vague rumor. "What happened to him?"
"Left her at the alter. Bastard." Gluttony mumbled. Envy and Sloth nodded in agreement.
"I still put flowers on his grave once in a while." Lust muttered nostalgically. "Anyway, the point is, Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, and you don't want Elly scorned, y'know?"
Reg didn't know, but he figured he was about to find out.
Lust pointed a wobbly metallic fingernail at him. "Go upstairs while we sober up, and don't you dare come down until Elly knows Envy here murdered her father."
Sloth shook her head. "I never should have bet on Lust."
Reg blinked. "Bet?"
"Oh, when we made hits, we always had a little bet on who would kill 'em first. With Hughes, I, like a fool, had my money on Lust. Week's salary, down the drain."
If Reg hadn't known them so well, he never would have believed it. "You made BETS on who was going to kill him?"
"It was a close second," Lust, ignoring the outraged young man, defended herself.
"Actually, if I recall," Envy butted in, now throughly soused, "it was a close third. Gluttony almost beat you."
Reg couldn't believe it. "You... all of you... helped?"
Lust looked at him unsteadily. "Just go tell her. I need some coffee."
Feeling worst than ever before, Reg left to have a chat with Elly.
Reg's room hadn't changed at all since he moved out. Posters of emo bands still dotted the walls, the few books he had not taken with him still leaned forlornly on the bookshelf. When he lived there, his had been the cleanest bedroom in the house. (He was a bit obsessive-compulsive.) But now it was coated with a thin layer of dust, a tribute to the others' dedication to housework.
When he led Elly in there, she ran immediately for the little jar on his desk that contained a white dot of light, his pet transmutation sparkle, the only thing left of Envy's once-infamous abilities.
"Oh, Reg! This is so cute! I have a little pink one at home from when I was little. One of daddy's old friends gave it to me." She set the sparkle back down and sat down on the bed (which sent up a little poof of dust) next to him. "So, what's up?"
Reg didn't know what was up. He had never been there. He certainly wasn't there now.
"Don't worry, Reg. Everything's going to be all right," Elly assured him, giving him a big hug. Reg reflected that she wasn't helping.
"Elly, there's something very important I need to tell you, and I want you to know if I had known before I met you, I never would have talked to you and put you through this."
"Reg, what are you talking about?"
"You... um... you know what a homunculus is, right?"
Elly's eyes narrowed dangerously. "Envy."
"Yes, but he wasn't the only one... there were... er... there were six others."
Elly stared at the sparkle blankly. "Do we really need to talk about this?"
"Yes, we do. There were seven altogether. They... we found souls and moved out here."
"We? What do you mean, we?"
Reg took a very deep breath. This was it. He fixed his eyes on a poster so he wouldn't have to watch her expression turn to hatred. "Elly, my family and I used to be the seven sins."
For a second, Elly seemed to die. "Reg, which one of you..." Then she came back to life, angry and terrifying. "You aren't Envy, are you?"
Instinctively, Reg threw his hands over his face. "NO, NO! I'M WRATH, I'M WRATH! Don't hurt me! I wasn't even around when they killed him! I didn't find out till you told me!"
Elly relaxed. Her whole body seemed to sag. "Which one is Envy?"
Reg gulped. "Constantine."
"Connie. But he seemed so nice."
"You didn't grow up with him. You wouldn't know."
There was a pause, then Elly threw herself face down on the bedspread (sending up another dust cloud) and sobbed. Many times, as an angsty teenager, Reg had done this, but he didn't know what to do if someone else did, so he settled for patting her head awkwardly.
"I miss my daddy, Reg." whimpered a muffled voice.
"I know. I'm sorry."
"Could I... could I have some time alone please, Reg?"
"Of course," Reg withdrew to the doorway. "I'll be in the room across the hall if you need anything. I'm sorry, Elly. I wish I had known."
Pride's old room differed from Reg's in two ways. First, it was kept very clean, even though Pride had ceased to inhabit it a very long time ago. Second, it showed no mark of its former occupant. This was hardly surprising, as Pride had died a week after becoming human.
They barely moved in when Pride caught his first cold. This being the first time any of them had been sick, they had all panicked. He had ended up overdosing on Dimetapp. Reg didn't remember him too well. Pride's room was now the guest bedroom.
A soft tap came at the door, then it swung half open and a now-sober Lust stuck her head through the opening. "Did you tell her?" Reg nodded miserably. "I'm proud of you, puppy. That took a lot of courage."
"It still hurts," whispered Reg.
"I know, puppy. Anyway, I came up here to tell you Deadwood is on."
"I just told the love of my life that you killed her father, and you want me to go watch Deadwood? What the hell is wrong with you?"
"Just wondered. But, Wrath, Envy's right. You do try to hard to be human."
"SHUT UP, SHUT UP!" Lust slammed the door shut just before the lamp Reg threw smashed against the wall where her head had been.
"Wrath, puppy?" asked a quiet voice on the other side of the door.
"I'll be down in a little bit, Lust. I just need some time to angst." Lust left him alone then, and Reg fell back on the bed and stared at the ceiling. Maybe he did try to hard to human. It made him nervous and obsessive-compulsive, but he came by it honestly. His childhood had been a good deal longer and more traumatic than most. His own creator had abandoned him; not the start of a good outlook on life. He may blame Envy for a lot of his troubles, but his self esteem had been mortally wounded before. Envy just finished off the job.
It wasn't like the rest of his 'family' helped much. He may have been around longer than Sloth, but even she treated him like a child. The idea of spending eternity trying to find out what was going on behind his back scared him witless. Other kids got games for Christmas. Wrath got a machine gun. Other kids wore cute hideous dress pants. Wrath got a miniskirt. Yes, it was frightening. Yes, it hadn't done him much good.
So, if he tried a little harder to be human, where was the problem?
Except, that little nagging voice in the back of his head that was always reminding him, he was always going to be Wrath, deep down. Just look at the remains of that lamp on the floor. That voice loved teasing him about Elly. She was so sweet and kind. She would never understand Wrath, right? And since he was still Wrath, she could never relate to him, right? It still kept him awake some nights.
The rhythmic pattern of a machine gun, followed by screams, woke Reg up from his angst. He ran down the stairs, and stopped dead in the doorway of the livingroom.
Greed and Gluttony were already on the floor, presumed dead. Sloth, Lust, and Envy were crouched behind the couch. And presiding over the scene was Elly, standing in front of the deceased TV, laughing insanely, machine gun in hand, headband over her forehead. Rambo Style.
"Oh crap oh crap oh crap..." Sloth repeated to herself. She still wasn't sober. Envy was very pale, kind of green. Not talking. Only Lust seemed unconcerned.
"Talk about holding a grudge," she giggled, risking a peak over the cushion. "Now we aren't going to see the next episode." Yes indeedy. Lust liked her Deadwood.
Sloth grabbed her by the shoulders and started shaking. "Lust! Do you realize the danger we're in?"
Lust smiled happily. "Oh, Slothy. All these years, and you still haven't figured out I'm suicidal? I was created suicidal. I wanted a soul so I could die. This is like my lifelong dream. But you're obviously not like me, so here's what we'll do. I'll run up and distract her. You make a break for it."
This wasn't a great plan at all, but one was a little drunk and not thinking clearly, the other was suicidal and didn't care. In the end, Sloth and Lust had ceased breathing. Envy stayed behind the couch.
Elly had run out of ammo, so she threw the gun away. Only after he heard it hit the floor did Envy stand up, arms raised in surrender.
"It would seem you're out of bullets, Miss Hughes."
"I don't deny it," Elly replied casually. Reg couldn't move from the stairs.
Envy advanced, stepping over Greed's body. "I know how you must feel, and the only explanation I can offer you, and you'll have to trust me on this, is your father had it coming. He was kind of annoying." he added as an afterthought.
"He had a four year old daughter!" hissed Elly, blinking back tears.
"Elysia, I know I screwed you over. I screwed you over bad, but you must believe me when I tell you, I'm a different person now. I've changed, and all I want to do is live and see Reg graduate. He's all the family I have left, as of two minutes ago, and I want to see him happy. That's all." Envy choked back 'tears' but Reg knew exactly how sincere he was. "I know I don't deserve your forgiveness or your mercy, but, truce?"
Elly wiped her tears away with one hand. The other was behind her back. "You're right," she agreed. Envy sighed with relief and started forward, but Elly broke into a twisted smile and pulled out a shot gun.
"This would be a more fitting end for you."
Elysia stared down at the body of her father's murderer, then smiled and blew smoke off her gun. Finally. Revenge is sweet. She turned back to Reg, still standing in the doorway openmouthed. Her smile faded a little.
"Oh, Reg. I'm sorry. I know they were all you had. You must think I'm completely insane!"
Reg was still processing. "Where did you find my machine gun? I've been looking for it."
"Oh, it was under your bed. Reg, I'm really sorry. I wish they hadn't been..."
"Where did you learn to shoot like that?"
Elly paused her repentance-speech to shrug. "Comes naturally, I guess. Reg, I love you. I know you must hate me now. I didn't want to lose you. But... I needed to... to..."
Reg didn't. Hate her, that is. If anything, he loved her more than ever. At least now he knew she could sympathize with him, at least a little. The nagging voice in his head finally, finally shut up. "Elly," he interrupted her broken apology. "Will your mom mind if we show up a few days early?"
Elly stared at him for a moment, then her smile returned. "She's always happy to see you."
Reg picked up his long-lost machine gun, stepped over a piece of brain, and held the door open for Elly. "Well, we should go. It's a long walk to the train station."
Elly skipped gracefully over Greed's body and out the door. "Indeed. Thank you, Reg, darling."
"No problem, Elly, dear."
And with that, they closed the door, and set off towards the rest of their lives.
The screen blackens, pretty sound track music plays, and the credits begin to role, apologizing to all those who had violated copyrights. (Includes: Ebay, Rocky and Bullwinkle, WalMart, Broadway, Dimetapp, Deadwood, Rambo, and the creators of FMA) Most of the readers leave the theater by the time "'Sponge-Bob Square-Pants' and 'The FUN Song' are copyrights of Nickelodeon. Used without permission." appears. If any were left and paying attention, they would have been treated to a six-page rant about why Gluttony rocks, followed by an equally long angst about how much the author hated killing off the Sins for this story.
The last notes of the song die down, but the credits are still rolling through the author's thoughts on the Elrics (especially Hoenheim. God, what a horrible name), so some filler sound is needed. (A/N: it's not really script, just a little extra thing... please don't turn me in to the fanfiction Nazis. If it confuses you, skip the italics, then come back and read them.)
Elly: So, your name's Wrath?
Special Thanks to the following:
Reg: No, my name's Reg.
Agatha Christie, Quentin Tarentino,
Elly: Wrath is a cute name.
The Adams Family, Annie Get Your Gun,
Reg: You can call me Reg. It's ok.
Whatever drug the producers were on when they thought up Envy,
Elly: Is it OK if I call you Wrath?
The person who invented Greed's glasses,
Reg: Reg is fine.
The descendants of Maes Hughes
Elly: What's wrong with Wrath?
Sloth, for having a job, and being so non-slothful
Reg: Well, for starters, it's not a real name.
The amazing Rando
Elly: Don't be silly. It's a fine name.
All of the people who have or who will review me. Ever. For anything.
Reg: Ok. You can call me Wrath, and I'll call you Sugar-Pumpkin.
The Nuances of Toast
Elly: (Laughing) Point taken, Reg. (Pause) I wonder what Mom'll say. 'Elysia! What have I told you about shooting up entire households? I raised you to be a lady!'
Um, that's about it, really...
Reg: (sudden though) Elly! We ought to cut the wedding invitations so they look like machine guns!
Thanks for reading... You've been a great audience. Give yourselves a hand.
Elly: (delighted laughter, clapping hands) Oh, Reg, we have to! And we can have bullet shaped favors, and... (voices fade)
The credits freeze on the final words. (Big hand for my Editor, Youkai-girl23, and my consultants, NekoRaven and Groundsquirrel)
The background fades into a sunrise, with a silhouette of Elly and Reg holding hands. Reg's pet transmutation sparkle appears in the corner, shakes its invisible head, and flies past the credits, turning them into 'A Flying Kick of DOOM production.'
Elly's Armstrong sparkle shows up out of nowhere and flies underneath, spelling out, "No homunculi were harmed in the making of this story." And then, in much smaller print, "But we aren't responsible for any humans who may have di... Well, we weren't responsible, OK?"
"Don't you dare mention Envy to me today. I'm serious. I may hurt you." -one of my friends the day after Hughes' death.
Just a friendly reminder to read (and reveiw) the sequel: "Trying To Be Human"... thanks!