This chapter has been reposted after being edited and cleaned up. (Make that twice..)
(clears throat) Alright! I'm starting my first of many FMA fics, and though I have no plotline yet, I have enough EnvyXEd fluffy goodness to stuff a chair and stall until I do have one!
Seira: Go Procrastination!
Cat: Alright, as I do for all my fics, I intro some of my muses. They just generally help me talk to you guys in an interesting way, and add comedy relief! This fic will be done with Kage and Kit, as all you readers of my other fics will know (now dead and deleted (wipes tear)), and then Phoenix and Seira, who are both new muses and never have mused on a ficcie before!
Kit: "Mused on a ficcie before". I have never heard that one before.
Cat: ... Shutup, I makez me own Engleesh...
Kage: Moving on...
Warnings: Language, Adult content, YAOI (guyXguy) for those of you too dense to get it from the summery, general teen crap, and some tiny SPOILERS. Don't know where, but they're probably there.
Kit: Warning, Bad Grammar Ahead.
Cat: Shove it, I know perfect Engleesh...
Chapter 1 – Look up to your Peers.
Yes! Room 301!
Edward Elric walked up to the dammed door with the number he'd been searching for for the last twenty minutes.
This was the well-known West Rain High School of Central Tokyo.
Having just moved here, he'd applied for the enormous school (as well as a few others), but West Rain was his first choice. Being such a busy school though (and popular apparently), he'd been "Put on the list". Just barely too. He'd been very disappointed in not being able to go the specialized high school, the place had one of the widest ranges of high school courses to take in the world! Not to mention it was HUGE. Over three-thousand students and four floors.
You can imagine when after an abrupt cancellation allowed him to apply; he was a little more than thrilled. It was already two weeks into the semester, but it was nothing he couldn't handle.
He was Edward Elric after all.
Home schooled right through kindergarten, and a genius to boot. In grade four, he was skipped to grade five. In grade seven, he was skipped to grade eight. In grade ten, he was skipped to grade eleven.
Now, at age fifteen, he was a grade twelve at a huge school in a city he'd just moved to.
"Okay, no pressure. I'm sure everyone gets lost. This school is huge! It's okay."
Ed looked at the little bronze plate that declared the door as classroom 301. The tirade to get to said door was a furious one and with great gusto, but once arriving to the door, all Ed's courage seemed to take a backseat and watch the fireworks.
"Just go in. They can't kill you for being late.." He murmured. Taking a few steps closer, he knocked on the door. The voice that was most likely the teacher speaking stopped and told a student to answer the door. A few seconds and the name "Jean!" was roared out. Another few seconds and a yell sounded. Finally, a noise like someone approaching the door was heard.
Jean Hugez opened the door to see a very short, blonde, intimidated-looking freshman-like teen there.
"What's up kid? You ruined my sleep..." The tall, very obvious football player grumbled. He looked a little disheveled and was rubbing a spot on his head that was all chalky. He'd just been whacked with a very well-aimed chalkboard eraser.
"I.. ah.. This is my first period class..." He trailed off, wanting to back up as the guy was just so tall...
Jean looked at the kid for a moment. And burst out laughing. Immediately, almost the entire class seemed to break out of the half-asleep trance it had just been in, and looked around to see what the commotion was. Ed felt his face brighten as many pairs of eyes scanned him, wondering what he could have possibly done or said to make their classmate laugh so hard (his was literally on the floor in his mirth).
Jean Havoc sighed and walked over to the doorway. He hadn't caught what the kid had said, so he decided to go ask himself. Roughly shoving the still laughing football player on the ground with his foot, he asked,
" 'Scuse him, can I help you with something?" He looked at the kid for a second, and quickly added with a mildly surprised expression, "Hold up... You're not Edward Elric, are you?"
Ed shifted on the spot and nodded slightly. Jean put a hand to his head and ruffled his own blond/brown hair in confusion.
"Wow. I was told you were going to be young but, wow..." The bewildered teacher turned and motioned for the blond to follow him. Ed tried to ignore the gasping teen on the ground when he yelled out, "How old are you? Twelve? Shit!" and resumed laughing.
The class was a sea of whispers and low voices until Jean called out, "Alright everyone, shut up for a minute while I introduce your new classmate." The room was silent for a moment until it basically followed Jean's (the student) example. Ed blushed furiously and pouted at the front of class.
Eventually, the class of laughing students died down and Jean finally got to speak. "Alright, you had your laughs, and I'm sure Edward here really appreciated it. Anyways, this is Edward Elric, he is your new classmate. Could you tell us a bit about yourself, Edward?" Jean usually liked to accept his transfer students with open arms, giving them the best impression possible. This blond was no exception, and to tell the truth, he was rather interested in a bit of information regarding the so-called prodigy.
Edward felt his blush more-so when he was given the full attention of pretty much everyone in the class. He summoned up as much courage as he could just to speak.
"Hello.. ah... my name is Edward Elric.. I just moved here this late summer... aah... I hope to get along with all of you and... have a great year here at West Rain..." He trailed off. A girl in the front row, Saya Akito, put her hand up quickly, and without waiting for a response asked, "Are you really seventeen? You look a lot younger." Ed looked away for a moment, embarrassed. In grade eleven, he'd also been two to three years younger than his peers, and he was mostly shunned and ignored. He hoped it wouldn't happen again.
"Actually.. I'm fifteen..." He murmured, and the whole class did a double-take.
"What the hell?"
"You were skipped two grades?"
Havoc quieted the class down again, and Ed meekly corrected the girl who'd asked the "two grades" question (Saya).
"No, ah, I was skipped three grades. I started school at age 7."
The class started murmuring again and he swore he would burn up under the dozens of gazes on him.
"Well, thanks for sharing with us Edward, everyone, treat him with respect like anyone else, and welcome him to the class!" Havoc said, and many voices started up again.
"Hey cutie, you look good enough to eat.." Some girl in the middle of the class shouted, and she along with about five other girls started giggling. Ed felt like he could fry eggs on his face.
Havoc's room was already crowded, but he found one open spot. He would have rather not placed the poor boy in front of his most.. Interesting student, but he didn't have much of a choice.
Havoc told Ed to sit down in the empty spot off to the left part of the room, which was right in front of a fast-asleep teen. The teen had long dark-green hair in spikes, and wore the strangest outfit Ed had ever seen. Ed was dressed in dark pants, a dark sleeveless, and a gray coat-like shirt. The sleeping teen wore three-quarter black leather pants and a hardcore tank-top that seemed to have a purple-ish sheen. Edward wondered how he could possibly get away with such an outfit with the clothing policy of the school in mind.
Sitting down uncomfortably (he was still being stared at), he tried to keep his gaze fixed on Havoc, who seemed to be a very nice guy, and was the biggest source of anything calming in the room (AN: Ironically enough). Havoc gave him a reassuring smile and proceeded to finish up whatever he had been saying. Ten minutes later of what seemed to be review (all of which Ed followed quite easily), Havoc announced that the test he'd told them about two days ago would be handed out and they'd get the next hour and five minutes to do it. Amongst many groans and shuffling to put everything away ("If I see anything other than a pencil on your desk, I'll smack you."), Havoc said loudly over the ruckus, "Someone wake up Envy!"
Another football player-like guy who sat to the right of Envy, Marcus Chi, reached over and knocked him in the arm, bearing a smile. Envy fell asleep in class all the time, it was a wonder how he'd passed most of his courses up until now. The teen woke up with a snort and smirked at the guy who'd knocked him.
"Did I fall asleep again? Aw, I might have missed something important..." He said, trailing off in his silkily sarcastic voice.
"Actually, you kinda did. Look." Marcus smirked, pointing to Ed, who was stalk-still. Envy blinked in surprise, and then morphed the look into a well-used smug grin. He got up off his chair and walked a step forward to lean on Ed's desk, while pretty much leaning on the small teen himself.
"You know you're short?" He said frankly. If Ed had been embarrassed to have a complete stranger so close to him, he wasn't anymore. Child-like anger that burst forth whenever someone poked fun at his height made itself evident.
"I'm not short! I'm just younger, so I look short!" He said, glaring up at the taller boy and shying away at the same time.
"Younger? How young can you be for a grade twelve?" Envy asked, a false-bewildered expression on his face.
"Can you believe this kid is fuckin' fifteen? He was skipped three grades." Marcus said, laughing.
"Edward? Could you come up here for a moment?" Havoc asked over the din. Who knew clearing off one's desk could be such a big deal?
Ed gave the older teen a wary look, and got up. Envy smirked and moved away, crossing his arms as Ed passed him.
When the blond got up to the front, Havoc took out a few folders and started rippling through them. "These are what we've been doing up until now. You don't have to take the test today, and if you need extra help, just come after school." He set down a small pile of papers on his desk.
"I.. don't mind taking the test. I was able to follow most of the stuff you were saying anyways." Ed said, taking the pile. Jean looked at him wide-eyed. "You sure? It's kinda complicated."
Ed nodded. Havoc shrugged and commented, "You're pretty brave. Alright, you can take it, but I can't give it to you again after you're caught up, ya know, to be fair and all.." Ed nodded.
Havoc patted Ed on the shoulder in a way of saying "good luck", and he walked back to his seat, putting the papers in a blue binder. Havoc passed out the test papers and instructed everyone to keep them face-down until he told them to do other-wise. Sitting down at his desk once he'd completed the task, he looked in Ed's direction. The teen thought that the teacher was glaring at him, but he realized that it was actually the male behind him being fixed on.
"Put the headphones on, Envy." He said in a voice that suggested he'd had a lot of previous history with the student. A small ripple of giggles washed through the classroom, and Envy sighed loudly and over-dramatically as he pulled an MP3 player out of his pocket and set it on the desk. He hooked the headphones around his ears and appeared to flick on the power switch. Ed saw all this out of the corner of his eye and was very interested in why Envy was required to listen to an MP3 player. When Havoc told the class to flip their papers, Envy did so after seeing everyone else do the action.
1101000101Whee! Binary Dividers!1101010010100
The test was going smoothly, all thoughts of the teen behind him, his player, and Havoc patrolling the rows was gone. The questions from the paper filled Ed's head and he quite easily pulled an answer for most of them. Some were a bit challenging, he figured that they were topics studied so far, and he had to make 'scientific guesses' at how to answer them. Just as he was about to write the next answer to a longer question, he swore felt his braid being fiddled with. He turned slightly to see if his guess was right, and to his confusion, the teen behind him was concentrating on the test. He focused back on his own paper, waving it off as his imagination and being too absorbed by the more difficult questions. He missed the soft chuckle from Marcus.
Ed was completely consumed by the questions once again. After what seemed like a long time to him, he wondered in the middle of an electromagnetism word problem if he was taking longer than he should. He quickly passed it off, not wanting to lose focus. A few minutes later, he sighed quietly, happy that he was finished. Looking up, he saw that he was the only one.
Not knowing whether to hand the test in or leave it where it was, he flipped the paper upside down and waited uncomfortably for Havoc to come around. When he did wander down, after checking Envy's MP3 player to make sure it was still going, he spied Ed's face-down paper.
"Are you finished already?" He whispered, though in the perfectly quiet room, it was heard by most everyone. Envy noticed that Havoc had stopped, and looked up to see him looking at Ed with a bewildered expression. He took one earpiece out to listen.
"..Yeah. I didn't know whether to hand it in or wait though.." Ed murmured, noticing the attention from the class again. This class seemed to be a lot more interested in him than his previous high school class did. Oh well, it was better than being shunned. Hopefully.
"Waiting is fine. Here, I'll take that." Havoc said, and picked up the test. He glanced at the clock. The young teen had finished the test in half the time he'd given the class. 'Well, he wasn't skipped three times for nothing, I guess..' He thought to himself.
Ed had nothing more to do, and was feeling more and more uncomfortable. He normally wasn't so jittery, but being in an all-new atmosphere with an all-new class that contained students that were all two to three years older than you was a rather intimidating scene. So, he pulled out a scientific journal on the use of mechanics in history and decided to read until the test was over.
A few minutes into his book and he swore, swore on any mathematical equation that his braid was being played with. He made no motion for a few seconds, and then quickly turned his head a bit to see behind him. The grade twelve that was sitting behind him, Envy, was looking back at him, arm outstretched and fingering his braid. He knew it..
A few seconds after Ed had turned to see Envy, the older teen smirked at him and moved his hand to poke Ed in the forehead with his middle and index fingers. Ed just blinked, mouth open at the quirky gesture, and continued to stare at Envy after he'd gone back to the test. Ed finally turned around, eyes wide. This Envy guy was a strange one...
Lost in his thoughts, he once again missed Marcus chuckling at Envy's antics.
"Alright people, tests up front!" Havoc called at 9:55, and laughed as some people panicked and tried to get twenty more minutes of answers into the next twenty seconds. Once all the tests were gathered, he announced that everyone was free to do as they pleased for the last few minutes of class.
Ed put his book away and stood up, ready to leave for his next class of bewildered peers. Envy walked past him slowly and made his way down the row of desks. Ed blurted his question out before he'd even really thought about it.
"Why were you playing with my hair?" Immediately, he regretted it. The taller teen stopped and turned to face him. Ed was a little put off to notice he was easily a head shorter than Envy. His eyes were pretty much at level with Envy's chest and shoulders.
"Why?" Envy purred, looking at Ed's golden eyes with some interest. "I don't know. It's unusual for a guy to have a braid like that. It's cute I guess. I like cute." He smirked and flicked the cowlick on top of Ed's head that he never seemed to be able to keep down. Envy grinned and walked down the row and stood with the gathered teens at the doorway, ready to be released to their next class. When the bell finally rang, and the students filed out, Ed took the moment to go up to Havoc and ask a question that had been bugging him.
"Havoc-sensei, I was just wondering, why does ah, Envy, have to listen to an MP3 player during a test?" Havoc laughed.
"Ah, you see, Envy is notorious for running a wide-scale 'cheating market' if you could call it that. He and most of the students in the class copy of one another and I've found it to be him running it. So, other teachers usually set him aside to do the test, but I just make him listen to his music, and it seems to keep everything cool. Two or three of his other teachers over the years have used my method, and it seems to work fine." He said cheerfully, obviously proud of his little accomplishment for a student. Ed nodded. "Oh. Okay. Umm... Could you tell me how to get to room 334?"
After gaining directions to his new class, he thanked his new teacher and went on his way to his next class.
Ed's glanced at his schedule for what seemed like the tenth time. He was sitting on the couch in the living room, going over everything that had happened.
(8:30 to 10:00) Physics - Havoc - Room301
(10:10 to 11:40) Medical-Physical Education - Tringham - Room334
(11:45 to 1:00) Lunch Break
(1:05 to 2:35) Science-Math - Marco - Room312
(2:45 to 4:15) Advanced Mechanics - Curtis - Room405
Period two had been pretty simple. Tringhan, the teacher, has politely given him everything they'd done so far and, like Havoc, told him that he'd be more than happy to help him after school. Lunch had been uneventful; he'd merely bought some caf food (not too bad...) and eaten by himself at a lone table (reading all the while). Period three had been much the same as the second, but he'd noticed that Envy was in that class. The older teen didn't sit near him, and really didn't take much notice of him, but he did wink at Ed before class ended. Ed had mulled over Envy for a while after that until came time for his last class. This was the only class he had that was taught by a woman, and damn, she knew machines. Ed noticed that she had a very spicy attitude, and definitely wanted to stay on her good side, but she seemed nice and was very supportive of Ed's special situation.
Finally, when the bell had gone, he'd left school and arrived home not too long later. He lived two quick blocks away from the school, so it was a very convenient trip for him.
And now as said, he sat on the couch. Looking at his schedule.
"Nii-san! How was school? Did you make any new friends?" Alphonse Elric, and Ed's younger brother asked cheerfully. He wheeled around the coffee table and parked in front of Ed, eyes alight.
Al had been in a wheelchair for as long as he could remember. He'd been born with weak legs, and was unable to walk in the least. Ed had decided years ago that he wanted to become a medical scientist and discover a way to create limbs that would become attached to a person, nerves and all, and allow them to move the limbs completely by will. He wanted to give his brother the ability to walk, to leave his wheelchair behind.
"School was... Exciting. The other students were really surprised that I was their classmate.. But no new news there. I didn't really make any friends, I kind of kept to myself.." Ed smiled, instantly cheering Al up. Al loved to see his brother happy, and was glad to see that Ed was smiling.
"How was school for you, Alu?" Ed asked. Al went to a school that was completely designed for children and teens in wheelchairs, as well as students with other handicapped conditions. They had been lucky to find one in this city. Whenever they moved to a city without one, Al either had to be home-schooled by a service, or had to go through all the complications of a regular school.
"Great! Not much new happened but we made all these cool-"
They were always moving from city to city. Every few years, their father, the only living relative they had left, would uproot them and move to a new city. The reason for this had something to do with his being a scientist, and the agency he worked with, and had to constantly move to do the studies and work that he was required to do. He could never tell his two sons what he was working on, but they were supportive of him and tried not to make a big fuss when the next move came up. They knew that Hohenheim's job was important, and he tried to keep as many ties with his sons as possible, even if he wasn't around often.
"That's great Alu. I'm glad you're happy at this scho-"
Ed was supportive of their father, but barely. Ed held many grudges against Hohenheim, and really disliked how he had to keep getting pulled from his home. He knew his father was aware of this, but he tried to put on a good face for when he found time to come home and spend a day or two with him and Al. This was because of Al. His brother thrived on happiness like a plant to water, and when his father was around, he was happy. Ed wouldn't dare tread on this, so he acted cheerful for Al's sake.
The lives of the Elrics were a little different now though. Hohenheim had told the brothers a while ago that they'd be living in Central Tokyo for a good few years, as was his new location time given months ago. He'd told the boys that since they'd be old enough to responsibly own their own house, he would allow them to keep the house they lived in now, and could stay in Central, instead of having to be constantly uprooted to travel with him if that's what they wanted. Al had obviously been against it, and wanted to stay with their father, but Ed was seriously considering the chance to have a permanent home. He decided that such a serious matter did not need to be thought about for a good while, and packed it in the back of his mind to mull over when the time was starting to arrive.
"Ne, ne, Nii-san! Father's coming home tonight! He called me a while ago!" Al said excitedly.
"Yeah? That's good." Ed smiled.
Al grinned and wheeled himself away with a big wave and a "See you Nii'san!". Probably to play games or organize something.
Ed looked at his schedule, and lay back against the couch.
He played with his braid until he fell asleep.
Cat: Wasn't that fun! Humor, Fluff, and brother-closeness all in the first chappie!
Phoenix: It is a masterpiece.
Cat: ... You know... You're creepy in the way that I can't tell whether you're being sarcastic or not..
Phoenix: (soft smile)
Cat: .. Maybe you're just generally creepy...
Kit: (Reads chapter title) Are you poking fun at Ed's height?
Cat: …Yes. Yes I am.
Seira: Um... (looking at a note) Ed grade 1 7 Envy fail? WTF does that mean?
Cat: Oh, notes for the readers.
Ed, as you know, was home schooled through kindergarten, and was put in grade 1 at age 7, as opposed to age 6. So, that is the reason he is 15 at grade 12 with three skips as opposed to age 14. And about Envy, well, he's failed classes all over the place and is at high school for a fifth year to complete them all.
Kage: Out of time.
Cat: Yup! Well, that's all for today, kiddies, hope to see you at the next chapter!
(PS - Yes, I'm following the FMA name-style of first names first and last names last, along with lots of non-Japanese names. Bite me.)