Cat: T-T... just... T-T

Cat Got: (Thanks for all the birthday gifts everyone!) (Edit-in: Holy Sin! Has it been that long? eck...)A wheel of my preference of cheese, Chocolate cupcakes with Envy-shaped candles and Vanilla cupcakes with Edo-shaped ones, Watermelon, Charms of Al and Hohenheim, Edo's Virginity (stolen from Envy), Marrige proposal (couldn't tell whether or not you were giving it, so here it is either way XD), Tamagotchi, Aruslym's soul (Cat: SOULS!), Some kinky stuff Ed and Envy used, Mini pocket rocket, Happy Birthday cake AND the boys, Convertible Envy/Ed flavored lube (Cat: ... O,O), Strawberry/Mango/Orange/Pear/Apple-flavored condoms, Cake with Ed and Envy tied up inside (Cat: Once, Chuck Norris ate a whole cake befo-(slapped by Kit) Kit: No Chuck Norris jokes!). (For the muses) Digital camera, Magnetic Edo and Envy Plushie, MP3 with Mirai and Returnable Memeories on it!
(from echoing raidiance:) The belt Envy and Ed were using upstairs, Edo's scratched t-shirt, More unbroken pencils, A TELVISION OF DOM! (Cat: The typo made me laugh for about two minutes XD (huggles Dom Television)), (and for the muses) Playstation 2 and wide screen tv with unlimited games (Cat: When I take too long to update T.T)
(from thoughtless dreamer:) HUGE catnip flavored birthday cake (with 18 candles; one for good luck!), Envy's housecoat that Ed wore, belt that Envy was making use of on Ed, The towels Ed and Envy had on (Cat: Oh, I will XD), Voodoo doll of Archer, Catnip flavored pocky, Clips of Ed and Envy from their school talent show performance, How to draw MANGA books, The Art Of Fullmetal Alchemist art book, Green hair dye, Ed's laptop, Al's meter stick (Cat: XDD), and Kei's good ol' camera!, (For the muses:) Bouquet of flowers and a muse medal (for Seira!), Muse cupcakes, Tickets to the zoo, Strawberries, Candy, Catnip, A box of flammable substances (for Kit!) (Kit: Oo).
(from NightPredator:) Stalker type pictures of Ed and Envy from the beginning of their morning to the end of their day, The belt Envy was using on Ed, The sheets Ed and Envy had sex on, Ed and Envy's towels, a truckload full of catnip, Some dirt to make your pet rock feel at home, A pair of Ed and Envy shaped sugar bowls that magically refill themselves, Pictures from a hidden camera in the boys' showers, The feast Al made, A computer manual that Envy will desperately need, A duster to get rid of all the dust on Envy's computer stuff, A side one-shot to this story, A CD with all of your favourite songs on it, A stack of erasers to go with the many unbroken pencils, A black void that can suck up Greed, A party hat, and a vanilla and chocolate Birthday cake!

Dodo-chan: Thanks very much for your reviews! I will say though... During the second one my eye was twitching the whole time I was reading it Oo...
darkangel36: Well, Greed's not coming back just yet, we have a few more chappies to go! Thanks for your review!
arusylm: You getta BIG HUG! ... And a mound of birthday chocolate! XD
ravemastaj: XD The guy is a random OC, he showed waaaay back in one of the earlier chapters. He's not from the show XD.
animelovernumber1: Hey, thanks very much for the pictures! I actually didn't have four of them, and I love them to bits! XD (bows) Domo!
Ekkena: I question my sanity too sometimes.. .. XD Thanks for the review! One comment I'm noticing common amongst readers is that my ANs are entertaining, and here I am revamping the first half of my story, AN-reduction included. Greeeeeeeeeeat... XD
Lost Alchemist: Your review made my eye twitch. Bonzai for the passionate claim I guess...
Manipulated Insanity: Ah, this one again XD First off, incest isn't all that new in fics, and it's quite accepted. So even if I was writing it, I'd be perfectly happy with it. Second, Envy being Ed's half-brother is a misconception, since Envy is a Homunculus, and a different person than the one he was created from. The person Envy was created from is technically Ed's half-brother, but Envy is not. Envy isn't Ed's brother any more than Sloth is his mother. And even if he was Ed's half-brother, I wouldn't care. (grin). Thanks for your review, and I hope this cleared up the confusion!
ND: Heh, I don't know much about stitches, I thought 2,000 was an appropriate number XD ... Let's just pretend they're... Really tiny!
Ja-chan: (I don't remember if this was the name you put yourself under or not in the reviewer box ) Here j00 update you bastard! God, stop reading 24 over and over, you made me feel guilty when you said that the other day XD. Read the fic fool! (hugs) (PS - I know it didn't look like it, but I was laughing really hard in my head when you fangirled over how "casually I cracked that whip". Lawls. XD) See ya at schools man. XD
Reiuki2: XD Awwwww! I feel so... Happy! I hope your party was fun! ... I will always make sure to eat a cupcake on October 8 from now on... XD Here's your chappie, and ENJOY!
1. Revamp of the story is under way, when I've finished up to about chapter 12ish, I'll be uploading the new-and-improved (somewhat) Sin High!
2. Everybody give ELI a big huge hug! XD She made me a graphic and we're sharing it with you guys! It's a beautiful piccie starring Envy, Pride, and Movie!Ed. Hug Eli everyone! (www(dot)expxe(dot)com(slash)EPE(dot)jpg)
3. Here's a cute little picture of ExE symbolism by Harvest Angel, go give it a looksie! (http(colonslashslash)www(dot)expxe(dot)com(slash)EXE(dot)JPG)
4. Sorry for the update pause, school sucks... But If things go my way, I'm ending this ficcie at chapter 30. No fears, they will be LONG, longer than what we've seen so far, and they will be moving a lot quicker than most of what I've done so far. I have less than ten major events left, and five chappies should do it. I hope. Consequently... There will most likely be very long pauses between, but I hope you guys don't mind it too much! Enjoy the chappie!

Cat: You one of the things that halted this chapter... I got hit with a HaoxYoh obsession a bit back... Shaman King of all things. I hope it's just a phase.. T-T
Kit: (mocking and sarcastic) But they're so cuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuute...
Cat: I know! And Yoh is so adorable and Hao's so sexy and they're so perfectly soft-core and-... Heeeeeyyyy
Kit: (grins)
Cat: You're... Evil...

Sin High

Chapter 25 - Cruel to be Kind - Act 1 (Song)

Letters to Cleo

Cruel to be kind; In the right measure.
Cruel to be kind; It's a very good sign.
Cruel to be kind; Means that I love you,
Baby! You gotta be Cruel to be Kind!

DUE TO THE CONFUSION OVER WHERE WE ARE RIGHT NOW IN THE STORY (No doubt the result of my insanely long update pause) THERE IS NOW A RECAP. HURRAH.

When a punk kid beats Ed up for revenge on Envy (Chapter 24), the wild teen is off on a murder spree for revenge of his own.

"... What are you going to do if I tell you?" He waited for a few long breaths, but he wasn't blessed with a response. "... He, looked about your age, I think he had a blue and red jacket on... He was wearing a white cap..."

Images of the punk that Envy had beaten up not once, but twice in the showers over a month ago flashed in his mind, and his face distorted in rage. So, the bastard was still holding a grudge huh...

Ed was released so fast that he barely realized he'd been released. He just caught, "That fucker..." being muttered with sheer hate from Envy's lips, and the older teen was streaking off down the hall with murder in his eyes.

Which is exactly why Ed ran after him, hoping to stop what could be the worst decision of Envy's life.

November 6th - Lunchtime - West Rain 1st Floor Hallway


Hate and malice raced through his mind with the same sort of effect lava did when rushing out of a volcano. It burned up everything in its way, and left only destruction in its wake. At this rate, the wild teen's common sense would be gone long before he found his victim, and it was one of the few things that could have saved the unknowing bully from a horrible bloody death.

Through his reddening gaze, Envy caught sight of someone he recognized, but didn't actually know. Unlike the rest of the people in the halls, the poor guy didn't get out of the way fast enough, and before he knew it, there was a steel-like hand clamped on the front of his shirt.

"Where is Davidson?" He snarled, eyes narrowed and nose wrinkled in his fury. If the guy had any loyalty to Envy's victim at all, it was completely forgotten in his attempt to save his own skin. He babbled fearfully about the named teen being somewhere outside gambling with his group of friends, and it was all Envy needed to know. Dropping the boy, he dashed off to continue his hunt.


He'd made a wrong turn at one hall, but he quickly got back on track after circling back and following the path of panic Envy was causing.

Ed rounded another corner and glanced quickly at the dozens of teenagers chattering excitedly or just making their way in the opposite direction the blond was going, trying to put themselves out of harm's way.

'Damn this hurts...' He thought angrily to himself, holding his throbbing midsection. He was starting to run like a limp because of the pain the strained muscles were trying to portray. He didn't care. He had to reach Envy before it was too late...

Sure, he was angry at that guy for beating him up, but he'd long ago prepared himself for abuse over his choice in partners. He even spent many nights (those ones where he was all alone) getting himself ready for the inevitable encounter he and Envy would have with Greed. He planned on just leaving this incident behind him, since the bully did seem like he'd vented his revenge and would leave him alone, but now that Envy had found out...

It was a whole new ballgame.

If Envy were to seriously injure that boy, or worse, kill him, there was no way he wouldn't be put in jail. He was already bad news to the police, and Ed knew that if the topics of Greed were brought up and associated with him, he'd be thrown in bars "for his own safely". Or at least some 'behaviour correctional facility'.

If there was one thing Ed was not going to let happen, it was allow Envy to have himself taken away and break their promise to each other. Maybe Envy would wait for him in jail, but Ed wouldn't be able to take the absence.

So he ran with all energy he could muster.

Every minute that ticked by seemed like an hour, but he caught a break when a bunch of people crowded at a window were jostling and pushing each other, trying to get a better look at the fight going on just beyond the protective walls. Ed rushed for the door.

Flying out into the chilly air, he swung around the building's corner and made for the storage shed placed closely to the wall a bit further down. Ed could see the edges of the fight going on just on the other side of the tiny structure.

"-YOU FUCKING TOUCH HIM AGAIN-" The pure rage deforming his face was enough to make Ed stumble for a second and stare, the booming yelling of his lover's words echoing in his head. Envy was screaming so loudly at the bloody teen in his fist it was a wonder the guy wasn't deaf. Or maybe he was, who knew?

Three guys were lying against the foot of the shed or on the ground, having taken a hit that was too much for them. Any other guys that had been there had already run off. The fourth guy there was up, but only because Envy was gripping him by his short brown hair.

"Guy, let go... please, I won't-" The teenager was bloodied up bad, nose gushing and one eye swollen shut. His shirt was torn and where it was hanging low, Ed could see large bruises.

"You're damn right you won't do anything! You're not going to be CAPABLE when I'm through with you!" He was spitting on the teen in his rage, and he pulled his fist back to land yet another blow. Every kick, every hit, every bit of pain he caused was being forced upon this teenager just as Envy would have forced upon Greed if he were able. Richard Davidson (made up name, coincidences apologized for) was taking the full fury of four years of pent up hatred, and the further fury of the pain a certain horrified blond had been forced to endure, and another felt entirely responsible for.

"Envy stop it! STOP! You can't do this!" Envy only seemed to get madder as his short lover grabbed the fabric of his black sweater and tried to pry him away from his living punching bag.

"Edo, get OFF. I'm making sure this FUCKER never does this again!" He raged, and tried to shake Ed off his shoulder. All he wanted was to beat this teen as far as his anger allowed him to. However far that may be.

Ed threw his arms around Envy's waist, a desperate attempt to try and consolidate him, but Envy was too far gone to be contained.

"Edo! Fuck off! NO ONE treats you like he did! LET ME PUNISH HIM!" He reached down and clamped his free hand over one of Ed's, trying to remove it best he could without dropping his victim. Ed kept his grip so stiffly, even he wasn't sure if the joints had accidentally locked. Either way, Envy couldn't get him free, but his bloodlust kept him from even considering the fact that he may be hurting his shorter lover.

"EDO LET GO!" He screamed furiously, locking eyes with the bleeding bully in his grip, and trying to convey his message that he wasn't through with him yet.

'Why won't he listen to me... Why can't he let it go... Why didn't I try harder to prevent this'-


He didn't know what he was doing, Envy didn't know what he was doing. Ed felt like the anger had just flowed into him. He couldn't defend himself against people, he'd even been raped because of it. He couldn't defend other people from his boyfriend, and it was his fault this teenager was being beaten. It was like every doubt had just suddenly banded together and decided to strike him down there and then, because before even he knew he was screaming, he knew he couldn't take it anymore.

Whether the words hit his ears first or the punch to his back, Envy was winded just a bit and his head ringing with the voice of a certain fleeing blond. Breathing a deep breath, and still confused as to what had happened, he turned (dropping the silent teen) and watched Ed run off towards the fence and the sidewalk beyond it. There was probably a small bruise forming just under his left shoulder blade where Ed had punched him, but it had gotten its point across.

His vengeful side was still smoldering and ready to spark up again with the lightest of provocations. But even he didn't even have to turn around to see the sniveling coward on the ground, silent as can be and very much aware of the tyranny that could continue should he speak.

If one would compare the situation to one Envy was more familiar with, they would say the wild teen was half-way through being seduced by the broken teen on the ground. His own need to write a wrong that should never have been written was like a light wine, but it was enough to coerce him into the ever-sneaky trap of so-called justice. He was still locked in the urge to satisfy the seduce, and beat one Richard Davidson past all reason and recovery.

But the image of one Edward Elric, running as fast as he could with a battered body and his reason in shambles, was stronger. Pulling him away from the seduction of his own rage and forcing him to make the more important decision. The one he had only up until now, ignored.

The small but growing audience both breathed a sigh of relief and a groan of disappointment when Envy took a few steps towards the fences himself, and with almost no transition between the two, he was off like a shot. Maybe for redemption, maybe for rejection.

Many of the leaves on the trees were beginning to turn fire colours, but few had actually ventured from their branches. The yellows, reds, and greens swirled around like a circling dragon, leaving him dizzy. The grays of the street and buildings seemed constant in contrast, and the whooshing objects racing by that could only have been cars was making him sick.

By now, he should have had a decent handle on his slightly damaged body, but the mental ordeal of trying to cope with his lover's rage just sent him over the edge again. Right after Davidson had left him post-beating, he'd gone through a good twenty minutes trying to come to terms and not throw up. Now, he felt like he'd have to go through that all over again.

No sooner had he come to the thought with a little dread, when two lithe arms began to circle him, but it didn't take a genius like Ed to know who it was.

"Stop it." He swung around to meet Envy's eyes, but his command died under the forceful embrace. "Stop it Envy!"

The green-haired teen wasn't saying anything, he had latched his arms around Ed's shoulders and hiding his face from the blonde's view, and even the defiant pushing of his muscled mid-section did not sway him.

"Envy stop it! ... Just stop it..." Ed choked on his words, and dared not try to say anything more. All forbid, he was going to break down into tears again. How soft. He half-heartedly continued to struggle in attempts out of the older male's embrace, but in the end he just had the energy to grip the stomach of Envy's sweater and stand there. From the road and the many passing cars, they could have seemed like they'd be locked together for an eternity, for all the rushing world could have seen.

Each 'whoosh' meant another passing vehicle, and each one had a strangely unique sound to it, if one listened close enough. Like every shaking breath his little blond took, each one had it's own story behind it. It was amazing how, surreal, a mindset one could take over when waiting for something crucial. And Envy was thinking surrealistically because, not one to believe in gods, he was wishing upon every one of them.

" ... I'm going to learn Self-defense."

"Alright." It was hard for him to admit that it was for the best, he wanted to be there always to protect his boyfriend, but he just couldn't. And he was thankful. More thankful than he would have admitted at the time. He was angry, in his own way, but he'd been forgiven. That was all that mattered.

A small breeze kissed the skin lower than his neck, and he noticed but did not take any heed to his gradually lowering sweater-neckline. He didn't care if Ed stretched the fabric with the weight his arms were burdening it with, but he did care to inquire as to his possible position at the moment.

"Are you mad at me?"

"Yes. And I want us to cool off for a while."

As if the words themselves were cool, Envy tightened his arms just in the slightest. Ed was leaning his forehead against his shoulder, and didn't seem very motivated to move. They both knew they needed distance right now, but it seemed like it was only further than they had already.

No one had squealed, or at least.. Not yet.

Envy lounged in Marco's class, doodling in the margin of the promised math test that he was doing horribly on. Truth be told, he had actually studied somewhat. However thoughts on the earlier episode, and further attempts to block said thoughts after fifty-agonizing minutes of it were more or less keeping him from doing any sort of number-and-or-letter crunching.

Who the hell thought of putting letters in math anyways?

So, there sat Envy, trying not to look at his lover who had been determined to finish the school day. Off at his own desk, so close and yet so far...

He slouched even further into his chair and dropped his dulling pencil, abandoning his poor attempt at some sort of doodled animal. Or a real good attempt at abstract. He was about to close his eyes when a small paper ball tapped his desktop light as a.. well, ball of paper. He let his head swing to the side lazily to see (at a skewered angle) Marcus sitting a couple desks down and indicating for him to read the note.

Turning back to the ball, he took it in his hands and unfurled it, reading the untidy printing.

what happened with you and Ed? i keep hearing about a fight or something

Envy rolled his eyes and answered the question with a question of his own. He didn't care to get into the squabble right now.

Catching the less-than perfect throw, Marcus looked at the response that merely asked how he'd made up with his previous girlfriend when he made her mad. Any moron could put two and two together as to the significance of the question, and Marcus decided to hand out some well-experienced advice.

Catching the ball and glaring at Marco who looked his way disapprovingly, as if daring the teacher to interfere, he opened the note and read his possible saving grace.

you could try taking him out somewhere he likes, or asking him out for a walk. Dont try anything too extravagant, be subtle. dont get flowers or nuthing too, im not expert in guy-romance or nuthing, but even i know he'd get pissed at you for that. just be careful, when me and Winry were still going out, i beat up some guy for badmouthing her and we got into a fight over it. that's why we broke up, so just play cool and give him space. gl

To the horror of half the class, Envy's head hit his desk with a sound "BAM" in a half-faint.

Chapter 25 - Cruel to be Kind - Act 2 (Al's Rough Beginning)
(I've never even read a fic with this pairing, and now I'm writing it on the side? Oi…)

Back at 9:00am that same day, it is a beautiful, but crisp, autumn morning. Riding along in the wheel-trans bus is Alphonse Elric, off to have yet another fun day at school. Oh, he doesn't know why today will be fun, but he just assumes it will be. Every day is fun when you look towards it with a smile!

So, turn back the clocks to November 6th's morning, where Al is about to have one of those days.

You know, the kind of day that changes your entire life.


Chattering excitedly, Al was the soul of the definition of cheerful. He made an effort to speak with everyone on the bus close enough to hear at least once, and he generally lifted the mood. Had the whole group of kids on the bus not been strapped to seats which were, in turn, strapped to the bus, there would have been much more movement and general excited nonsense.

Many of the kids on the bus were younger than Al, and his school was small, but it hosted these kids and younger all the way up to his grade and past. With less than two hundred students with disabilities, the private school was small and well-funded enough to take on such a range of kids with ease.

It wasn't until the bus passed the small houses, and the small park and the small schoolyard, that it came to a stop. With a small cloud of dust waking up after its small tires along the small ashfault road. (Cat: I'll stop now.)

There were a number of people in the front, waiting with smiles to assist the students off the buses. There was still a good twenty minutes before class started, but it was their job to stand outside and help their students out.

Not needing any assistance himself, Al waited until everyone else was off the bus and then wheeled off himself. He decided to go for a "walk" before class started, not unusual for him, and wheeled himself along the conveniently smooth and sturdy black ashfault road.


"Come on baby, 'sa not like ya got anythin' else to do, right?"

A greasy-looking guy with equally greasy-looking hair leaned against the high light-brown fence that melted into some bushes. They were just on the outskirts of a school, and none of them happened to go there.

"Anything else is better time spent than you, asshole, so fuck off."

Close to the first greasy guy was two more greasy guys, all huddled in a tight ring around a fourth, non-greasy-looking figure.

"Ooh, smart mouth... Ya should use it fo' other things chickie, not flapping out you smart-talk." (Cat: Okay, it's official, I can't speak Urban. )

The guy raised his hand as if to secure it to the surrounded girl's shoulder, but she slapped it away. Her posture was slowly and unconsciously slipping into one more defensive, rather than the uncaring one she was trying to put out.

In a flash of movement, the action and reaction repeated themselves, but faster, and with a bit more ferocity. The other two guys huddled close by looked as if they were ready to jump in at any time, but something none of them expected happened.

Passer-byers did just that, pass by, probably out of fear of getting involved in what was turning out to be a bad situation for the surrounded girl. Said passer-byers were all walking on by like it was not visible in the first place. But one was not walking, and he did not just pass on by.

"Is there a problem here?"

It was difficult to tell who was the most surprised put of the group. The four teenagers were looking down at one of the kids assumed to be from the school they were close to. Sitting down in a shiny, spiffy-looking wheelchair.

The two guys closest to Al backed up and got closer to the first guy, leaving the girl between them and the cheerfully-smiling teen in the wheelchair. As if they were hiding in some pathetic way.

"Bug off kid, this don't concern you." It was always intriguing to notice the changes people went through when a confrontation or argument suddenly involved a stranger. One shouldn't just rely on their looks or attitude to keep the passing public away, not when there were people like Al around. He was on higher moral ground, and could look people eye-to-eye in that respect.

"I believe it does concern me." One powerful arm wheeled the chair forwards a bit, and the blond sent a reassuring smile to the girl who was more dumbfounded at his sudden appearance than anything. She didn't even have the thought to protest his help.

"I think I see the tell-tale hints of a disagreement here, and I'm pretty good at solving disagreements. At least, I'd like to mediate this conversation since I'm unsure of your ability to restrain yourselves."

With confused looks exchanged between the three guys, it was obvious that their confidence was dwindling. It wasn't until one of the teachers back at the not-so-far-away parking lot called to him that they decided to "deal with" the girl later, before they brought down "a whole school of wheelchair kids on them".

The guys slinked off, back-glancing at the unusually cheerful kid in the shiny metal chair. The girl was completely dumbstruck and kept him trapped in a fully stupefied stare.

Al sighed in relief. "That went surprisingly well." He smiled warmly at the girl, not too much taller than he was (as he was). This seemed to let her slip from her daze, and she shoved her hands into her jean pockets and sunk back into a casual slouch.

"I didn't need your help."

"I know." Still that bright smile. "But I couldn't just pass by."

The person back at the parking lot called him again, and he gave a small wave to the girl before he started to turn around. "Bye bye!"

The sound of tough wheels turning over the sidewalk was in the stead of silence, had there been silence in the first place considering they were right beside a road. Two well-worked arms spun the chair's wheels with ease, and before he got too far, "You're pretty brave for a kid in a wheelchair."

He didn't stop, but somehow the girl knew he was smiling.

(How many of you already know who the girl is? XD Bet I'm gonna get a lot of mixed response on this one..)
Al didn't find the cold to be all that uncomfortable; he was quite at home with chillier temperatures. He had a light coat on as well, dark blue over his lighter blue shirt.

He liked looking at the changing trees and bushes. Even though the amazing display of colours merely signified death, it was beautiful to watch.

The rose smells sweetest when dying, right?

Snapping out of his thoughts, he noticed someone walk towards him. Or more specifically, the bench close to him. He'd been eating his home-packed lunch under the big sturdy tree close to his school. He would have made a similar pack-lunch for his brother, but Ed always declined his offers for them since he "felt childish" when he brought them.

But back to the figure.

He realized as they sat down that it was the girl he'd met just that morning! He took the time to take in her appearance, since he hadn't gotten a good look at her before;

Only a bit taller than he was while sitting down, she had a small, quick-looking stature. She seemed as if she could take off like a shot if she wanted to, and would closer fly than run if her tiny build had anything to say of it. She didn't look fragile however, no not in the least.

She had very full lips, and short blonde hair that streaked back all by itself (one collection of strands that was longer than the rest lay animatedly in front of her face). Her eyes had a sharp shape to them, but they weren't threatening. Not right at the moment anyways. She wore a green, black, and brown camo-coat, and faded blue jeans that frayed at the ends and at every cut.

"Gonna come over and chat or you just gonna oogle all day?"

In the span of four-point-five milliseconds, Al's face lit up like a Christmas tree and he stuttered a bit before rolling his chair along. Despite the grass, the wheel's were made to be able to fit most daily-life terrain. Another of his father's ingenious creations.

"H-hi." He said shyly, and fit himself beside the bench so he was facing her. She slid closer to him and put her chin in her palm.

"You seem quite different than the little hero you made yourself out to be earlier. Why all the shyness, huh?" She had an amused smirk on her face. She was watching Al's reaction intently, and, being as observant as he was, it made him even more nervous.

"W-well, I wasn't trying to be a hero, I just didn't want anyone to get hurt or anything..." He skillfully avoided the question, and if the girl seemed to notice, she didn't point it out.

As if to back up her earlier statement of not needing his assistance, she proudly declared; "I wouldn't have been hurt, if that's what you're getting at. I just didn't want to take them out, any more police bang at my door and the parents'll throw me out."

She smiled, and her eyes showed that same smile, but Al got the impression that her face rarely showed the expression. It made him feel good somehow.

He noticed her eyeing him, like he had just a moment ago, but before he could get flustered again, her next question beat him to it with shock.

"It must take a good bit of strength to move that thing around, huh?" He blinked a few times, and started to nod, but jumped as the girl started forward suddenly and placed her elbow on his armrest. Her small hand stuck straight up into the air, and he could only stare at it rather unintelligently.

"Arm-wrestle." She said simply, the corners of her mouth angling up a bit more as she was clearly having fun. Al was still lost in some sort of multi-coloured Lala land, and he found himself wondering stupidly if he was just looking up at the trees and spinning around oddly fast in his chair. Somewhere through the chaos however, he saw himself raising his hand and resting his own elbow cautiously close to hers.

He was shocked out of his myriad of colours when she grabbed his hand firmly, giving him a determined look. Their arms were creating a thin sort of triangle, connected at the top. He barely had time to flex his arm when she murmured, "Start."

If he hadn't been concentrating on her increasingly force-stressed face, he probably would have found it funny. His arm was moving back so slowly it was barely moving at all. She even gripped his opposite armrest to add more force. Her fingers clasped his hand with a definite strength, but he was just too hardened from years of working out and wheeling himself around to notice their full crush. He managed to ease himself out of his dazed trance and slowly pushed her hand back until they both lay horizontal.

She was staring at him, mouth slightly ajar and past all words. Her arm went limp and was held up only from the support the arm rest gave her elbow, and her hand still caged in Al's gentle but firm grip. His arm was resting half on hers, but there was no accompanying warmth through the thin coats yet.

A moment or two of silence passed through them, and Al started to worry that he'd made her upset. His eyes widened however when that was clearly not the case.

"Damn, you really are strong! Not many people can put me down, kid!" She half-laughed to herself, shaking in her mirth and lying awkwardly to the side until Al jerkily unhinged his hand from hers.

She sat up straight, still chuckling, and wiped at her eye a bit with the end of her coat sleeve, as Al scrambled to defend himself and his unusual strength.

"Ah, you see.. Um, I work out a lot with my brother... It's good for the health and all... And I n-need to be able to move my wheelchair... Um.." It seemed his metaphoric floundering was only making her laugh harder, and he blushed as his ears took in the sound. He knew that wasn't something she did often, he didn't know how he knew, but he did none-the-less.

Finally able to control herself, the girl stuck out her hand again, but for a handshake this time.

"Name's Martel. Nice to meet'cha."

Finally back on grounds he was familiar with, Al accepted her hand and shook it professionally, smiling and introducing himself back.

Well off to the side of the school, the two exchanged conversation. They managed to learn a bit about each other, such as Al's new-found knowledge that Martel was close to three years older than him and went to Blue Wall high school, though skipped most of her days. (Cat: That makes him fourteen and her over 17, for those who missed it. (grin))

Al had murmured something about skipping being bad for one's future, but had been set back into place when the blonde had poked him lightly on the cheek saying that "he hardly knew her and he was already worrying."

Al blushed at that. He seemed to be doing it a lot around her, and she was quick to point it out.

"O ho, made you blush again!" She pointed to his reddened cheeks and slyly asked, "I wonder what other features you come with.." And with that, she whipped her hand out fast as a bullet and tickled his side skillfully. Predictably, Al started laughing and tried to fend off the enemy hand, and she decided to be merciful.

"Hmm, blushing and laughing, you have good features." She said, running her fingers into her short hair and secretly marveling at herself for her uncharacteristic behaviour.

"I whistle."

Martel blinked.

Al pursed his lips and proved his claim, a musical tune piercing the chilled afternoon air.

A true, true as anything could be, laugh rang out and the girl rested her elbow on his armrest and her chin to her hand.

"You're a real character, aren't you?" Her eyes, a rather vivid olive-green, caught him in an exchanged glance that was both comfortable and exciting.

"I try to bring a smile where I can." And he smiled himself, bringing yet another to the girl's face.

"That's very just of you." And with those final words, she tapped his cheek with the lightest of touches and got up, waving her goodbyes and leaving just as sudden as she had come. The bell signifying the end of the lunch period rang out the moment she left his sight.

"God, why did I even get myself into this.. "

Large, heavy tears ran down his face with a torrential force all their own.

"I should have done something else..." His slight murmurings were on deaf ears as the noises of the classroom went on. Students of his age and grade were preparing various dishes for a major Home Ec. assignment, but all Al could do was stand off by himself at his long, empty table and prepare his with nobody but his tears for company.

Beret, a friend of Al's at the table next to his, turned and saw the blonde's tear-streaked face. The boy was staring down at the sharp knife in his hands with a certain restrained amount of dislike.

"Al, you okay?" Beret asked, tilting his head slightly to get a better look. He was making a cake, simple enough for him, and they were supposed to be having a competitive assignment, but he didn't care if the teacher thought he was getting help from Al. He was shocked and his eyes flew wide open as the blonde wailed, "I'm just too nice sometimes!"

He shouldn't have chosen a dish that included so many onions.

Chapter 25 - Cruel to be Kind - Act 3 (Shadow to the West)





It was always fascinating to him to see his trusty blade pass almost completely unhindered just under the surface of wood. To see the tiny, thin slice of the material separate and fall to the ground lightly and carefree. It was unlike skin, which tended to drop quickly and wetly.



The small blocks of wood started out as figurines, taking on a human-like stature quickly. He was good at whittling after all.



However, despite his supposed expertise, after getting past the basic human shape he seemed to be unable to concentrate properly. The limbs sharpened and disappeared, the heads merged with the rest of the body, and all together became nothing but a formless block of wood once more.



He wasn't one to give up however, he was particularly good at turning most anything to his advantage after-all. The somewhat smaller chunks of wood then became less-complicated objects. Why, on his table he happened to have a great little variety of things.

There was a rough lizard, with stubby little legs to support it.

There was a small bowl, one of his lesser objects.

There was a pair of wooden sunglasses, he was particularly proud of these.

Amongst the objects were a surprising collection of simple, slim cones. Rounded at the bottom, sharp at the top. They all represented an attempt at a human figure, but wound up as nothing but pointy dead-ends.



He was not going to settle for another dead-end. This bit of wood in his hands was going to be the one he succeeded with. He continued to cut tiny strips away from the middle of the wood, further slimming the waist of the person-like figure.

A knock on the door. Someone entered.

"Sir, we've got a flight ready for you on the 28th. Then we can get you out the next morning."

Nod. A dismissal. He would be returning to Japan shortly. The person left, closing the door.



Indeed. No more would he have a dead end. This would be the last attempt. It was all he would need. He felt it in his bones.


More strips floated away as an arm perched smugly on a rough, wooden waist took form. He was taking extra care in making sure the strength of those tiny wooden muscles would show. He wanted everything to go perfectly.


He gazed at the cut on his thumb, lazy red liquid inching down past his knuckle to drop to the floor.

And everything would go perfect.

Cat: XD lawl, I wrote this chapter all out of order...
Kit: Indeed. This last past makes me worry.
Cat: You and me both Oo...

1. Richard Davidson is a made up name, if anyone has this name or similar, sorry, it was pure coincidence! (I feel the need to add this because it seems very likely to be someone's name Oo)
2. Here's a small dictionary, since I keep getting vocab questions. I thought the fandom was more experienced, but, ah well!
CH1 - "-sensei": It means teacher, and it is an honourific. It's the equivilent to Mr., Mrs/Ms., etc in a school environment. - Nii-san: Brother. Duh.
CH2 - Koi: Love, or short for lover. - Chibi: Small, short, cute, etc, all the above. Can be considered something like slang at times.
CH5 - Wasabi: It's Green. It's Mushy. It's Evil. Don't Touch It. You'll burn your face off if you eat it.
CH8 - Bonzai: We're just going to leave it at "it's a cheer" and be happy. Damn if I have to explain the whole "thousand-year" thing.
CH9 - Baka: Idiot. Moron. Fool. Stupid. St00pid. Enter Thesaurus.
CH11 - I am not translating the songs here. Go look it up!
CH13 - By the time I got up to this chapter, I was too busy reading bits and pieces to even notice any possible Japanese used. I can't remember off the top of my head any later lingo used, so the mini-dictionary stops here... Just review in a word if you want it translated. OKAY?

And also "ne", I don't know where I used it first (I was only skimming chapters for Japanese words), but I know it's in there. Ne is merely a word put at the end of a sentence to act like, "Huh?" or "Don't you agree?" or "Right?" Something like that. If I go, "It's cold out, ne?" it's like saying "It's cold out, huh?" Getitgotitgood.
-Maa, Naa, various other slangy nonsense words: Envy's just like that, he says nonsense. It's like saying "heyyyyy..." but... It sounds better XD
-Just as an extra, you see see some emocons in my ANs sometimes, and here's what they mean if you've never seen them before:
XD - It's a laugh. Oo - It's supposed to have an underscore between them, but that's an "odd look." Like when someone asks you if the sky can melt. T-T - It's a crying face. It's usually sarcastic XD. O,O - It's a shocked look, amongst other things. :)Z) - Maniac look, clean and simple.
3. Look Eli! HET! (points at MartelxAl) Miracles DO happen! MUHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!

TBC (Though, probably not anytime soon if my pattern has anything to say about it...)


Kit: Flame her, it helps.
Cat: IT DOES NOT! Flames equals Emo equals Suicide equals NO MORE SIN HIGH.
And I don't want to be emo. Oo

(Glances at Review count) Wow... I.. am dangerously close to hitting 1000... People! Don't let me hit 1000! I will have a heart-attack and DIE!

... And all fingers would probably point to Raito, the sorry bastard.

He needs a hug. That is all it would take to make the guy stop killing people. Just give him a hug.

... Or lock him in a small room with L... That'd be fun to watch. :)Z)

(Edit-in: Oh yeah... I forgot about the cuffs... ST00PID. Ah well... How about a "small room with a jaw-dropping variety of S&M toys"? XDDDD

EXTRA (crack) Mini Fic For those who read far enough into my insanely-long ANs to notice it.

A random crack!clip that only just popped into my head half-way through writing the MartelxAl Act.

Dedicated to all those who love Sin High.

Written out of guilt for taking so long to update Oo

Locker Abuse

There he was.

Bold as any lion, and just as fierce.

The man of his dreams. (A quote quotable just in itself XD)

The halls were empty, and he was returning from the bathrooms. Ed even carried the hall pass with a sort of defiant air when the hall monitor had narrowed his eyes at him earlier.

But.. But Envy… HE was probably wandering around just because he wanted to. He didn't need something like a hall pass.

But Oh! Here in the silent hallways, he trailed behind the object of his desire. That saucy gait, unbreakable attitude, and the sexiest, hardest body he'd ever laid golden eyes on.

Ed had fallen head over heels the second he saw him.

And here in the silent hallways… He trailed. Watching as every muscle under skin-tight clothing moved and grooved.

And then he turned.

"Stare often?"

Ed's eyes flew open and he stopped dead in his tracks, as his very living fantasy glared at him dangerously.

And he did the most dangerous thing.

He blushed.

No sooner had his horror even occurred to him, and he was pushed against the locker.

"You makin' fun of me?"

Ed scrambled for some way out of his personal god's wrath, and shook his head so rapidly that his brains were probably stir-fried by the time the wild teen's fist had embedded itself into the locker right beside his head.

The crash sounded like thunder to his ear (not a few inches away), and it echoed down the hall with the dull roaring of a dying storm.

He knew the older teen was very much into women, so he hadn't said anything. Even if he had been into guys, Ed still couldn't have said anything. He could barely think when near Envy, much less tell him he liked him! (Or fanatically obsessed over him..)

It was no secret that Envy appealed to the women's taste, even going as far as to appear somewhat gay. But when the wrong people pointed it out…

Hence his blush, which just stamped the lovely red stamp on his death certificate.

His love, passion, fantasy and dream narrowed his eyes, demanding his words, but Ed knew his fate was sealed.

But if he was going to die, he would die happy.

With precision neither of them knew he possessed, Ed's arms shot up, one around Envy's midriff, the other behind his head. The shorter blond pulled him down and shot up on his tip-toes to crush their mouths together.

Every night's favorite movie was playing out in real life for him, and he aggressively locked every part of his mouth that he could to the older male's. Shock was the only think keeping him still, and Edward Elric fulfilled his life-goal by ravaging those mocking lips, tasting that skillful tongue, and acquainting himself with every tiny crevice.

His fingers were clamped into thick, long hair to the point of his knuckles going white, and he'd long-ago pressed them together and secured the teen's waist to his own.

This was his dream, and it was all lived out, an eternity in the span of a few long seconds.

And as quick as he'd attacked the stunned teen, he sucked on Envy's lower lip for a blissful second, then was racing down the halls to flee form the building. If just to see the sun shining brighter, and the birds chirping more beautifully than before. If only for a few moments.

Envy stared, open-mouthed, at the place where the blonde's head had been just a second before. His eyes slowly trailed over to where his fist was connecting with the locker, sitting in its own tiny crater where the thin metal had given way.

Normally, the human mind has deep, psychological activities going on, multiple activities. Right now, every single activity, ever single function was dead silent.

But one thought pierced through that silence. One, single thought.

I gotta start punching lockers more often…

Happy Halloween from Cat and Kit! XD