AUTHOR'S NOTES: I do not know the gender of Rose's baby so I assumed that it was a boy. This takes place presumably a few years after the movie…which I haven't watched. And the song "You're Beautiful" is by James Blunt.

Orion Crane is my character and my character alone.

My life is brilliant

My life is brilliant

My love is pure

I saw an angel

Of that I'm sure

The market in Central was almost always a crowded place, but today there was a lot more room to walk in, probably because of the gray skies overhead that signaled an impending storm. Of course, most shopaholics wouldn't let a little weather disturbance rain on their parade.

Although Orion wasn't a shopper, he was just a wandering man who merely wanted to take a leisure walk. In fact, the only thing the twenty-something man with the mop of black hair bought was a bottle of water to quench his thirst, which was already half-empty now. Even though he now lived in Central, where he made a living as an architect, he was originally from Liore, and he would never forget how it glowed with a shimmering red light before it was devastated.

Another thing he wouldn't forget was Rose.

Orion and Rose had been childhood friends, and when Rose fell in love with Kain, Orion couldn't help but feel a little jealous of the two, but still he considered them a perfect couple. Despite the fact that he also mourned Kain's death, being friends with him as well, he saw his loss as an opportunity to try and win Rose's heart, and several times he came very close to achieving his goal.

But she didn't fully get the message, possibly only thinking that Orion was merely being kind to her after the loss of Kain broke her heart. He eventually gave up wooing her, especially after seeing her with a baby not long before Liore was destroyed. Was she already married to someone else? Then again, if the baby had a father, he would have been hanging around Rose more than the mysterious hooded man who had created the huge transmutation circle, or the strange woman who often guided Rose.

She smiled at me on the subway

She was with another man

But I won't lose no sleep on that

'Cause I've got a plan

And as if on cue, he saw a head of brown hair topped with pink bangs not too far away, beside a young man with auburn hair tied back into a neat ponytail. Orion's greenish-hazel eyes flicked to the symbol on the man's red cloak, a cross with a serpent entwined around it…the symbol for alchemy.

Before he could ponder any more about this strange emblem, he heard a familiar female voice…a voice he had not heard in a long while, and it came from the mouth of the woman beside whom he assumed an alchemist.

"Orion Crane, is that you? I haven't seen you in a really long while!"

Orion hastened at the sound of his name, pushing past a gaggle of excited girls and ignoring their berating remarks and his mind echoing, She might have another guy in her life…don't be so overconfident

"Rose, you are looking as beautiful as ever," he greeted her. "And how's your kid…Kain, is that it?"

She giggled and patted a small brunette child that had peeked out from behind her, obviously to see who his mother was talking to. "We're doing well," she said. "And by the way, I have someone to introduce to you. Orion Crane, meet Alphonse Elric…or, should I say, Major Alphonse Elric."

You're beautiful, you're beautiful

You're beautiful, it's true

I saw your face in a crowded place

And I don't know what to do

'Cause I'll never be with you

Orion's heart, which had been beating ferociously at the sight of Rose, dramatically slowed down and sank as he saw Rose's companion turn around and smile. The man called Alphonse was handsome and well-built, and looked only a few years younger than Orion and about only half an inch shorter. His eyes were full of curiosity and wonder, and he wore a black shirt and trousers over his red cloak. He shook Orion's hand with a white-gloved one, and Orion could see that it had a transmutation circle sewn onto the palm.

"He is the younger of the two brothers who foiled Father Cornello's plot. He was the one in the suit of armor," said Rose proudly, gazing at Al fondly. "But he's out of it now…not too long after the fall of Liore."

"The Fullmetal Alchemist, is it?" guessed Orion.

Al chuckled. "No, that's my brother, Lieutenant Colonel Edward Elric," he corrected, "although he doesn't fit his second name much these days."

"So…you're not…an alchemist?"

"Actually, I am, but my brother just happens to be much better at it," was the nonchalant reply. "He can perform alchemy without circles, and he became a state alchemist when he was only twelve. I passed my test shortly before my twenty-first birthday and now I'm the Metallic Earth Alchemist."

"He really blew them all away," Rose put in. "I was able to watch. What about you, Orion? What have you been up to these days?"

Yes, she caught my eye

As I walked on by

She could see from my face that I was flying high

And I don't think that I'll see her again

But we shared a moment that will last till the end

"We're helping rebuild Liore," said Orion, with the air of someone describing his masterpiece. "We're going to call it New Liore and start over. I have plans to make it bigger and better than its predecessor."

"Sounds good," said Al with an impressed grin, adjusting his left glove. Muttering something, he pulled it off and revealed a small golden ring on his left middle finger briefly before putting his glove back on. Orion noticed that Rose also had a similar ring as well. He tried not to think of the worst, but it was hard not to, not with those rings seemingly glaring at him…

"Oh, did I mention that Alphonse and I are engaged?"

Something inside Orion snapped – but not in a furious way. He couldn't believe it…Alphonse and the child looked so different; it was not possible that he fathered Rose's offspring…

"Wait," he blurted out when he regained his composure, "you're Kain's father? I mean, this Kain?" He nodded at the child, who was still timidly lurking behind Rose and playing with a small ball.

"No," Rose answered for him slowly. "But he's willing to be the father."

You're beautiful, you're beautiful

You're beautiful, it's true

I saw your face in a crowded place

And I don't know what to do

'Cause I'll never be with you

These words hit Orion like a huge sack of bricks. He was hoping, praying that he could get another chance to court Rose after many years of giving up, but even so, she was now engaged, and she looked so happy with Al. Yup, she does have another guy nowshe doesn't need me anymoreand I can't break them up. I just can't. At least Al seems to treat Rose like…well, a rose.

"Rose…" he spluttered, but couldn't continue whatever he was going to say.

She gazed at him, concerned. "I know you've courted me shortly after Kain was gone," she whispered while Al pointed something out to her little boy, who was laughing and clapping in delight. Then Al clapped his hands once, and created a little model horse for the child, who never stopped smiling. Rose grinned at the two of them before turning back to Orion.

"But…I never got the chance to tell you that…I don't think you and I were meant to be…more than friends. I love you, Orion, as a good friend. However, I just can't see us together."

"I know," he said slowly. "You loved Kain."

"And I chose to love again after a long time of being alone, and I'm sorry if I did not choose you," said Rose calmly but frankly. "Still, you'll always hold a special place in my heart. Don't think that if I don't love you the way you want me to, our friendship is over. We'll always be friends."

Orion gazed at her intently. Perhaps he really wasn't made for Rose after all, seeing how much she enjoyed being with Al, and how caring he was to his future wife and child. The Metallic Earth Alchemist deserved a woman like Rose more than he did.

You're beautiful, you're beautiful

You're beautiful, it's true

There must be an angel, with a smile on her face

When she thought that I should be with you

"Are you all right?" He gasped, and saw a flash of white streaked with lines as Al waved his hand in front of his face.

"Uh…I'm just fine, Major Elric."

The alchemist laughed. "Please, call me Al. It was a pleasure to make your acquaintance. Any friend of Rose's is also a friend of mine. We hope you would be able to honor us with your presence in three weeks' time." He slid his fingers into a pocket and drew a small white envelope, which Orion accepted ambiguously. In front of it were the words

You are cordially invited to the marriage celebration of Rose Thomas and Major Alphonse Elric.

"N – No problem," said Orion. "I would be happy to."

"I'm glad too," said Rose, gently draping her arm on little Kain's shoulders as he played with his new toy. She smiled – the same smile Orion remembered that would often make his heart dance with joy – and waved. "It was great that we were able to see each other again, but Alphonse and I must be going."

"Yeah, I know," agreed Orion, nodding. "It's good that you're living a great life, with a loving husband-to-be…"

Al chuckled. "She's lucky to have friends like you," he said, before turning to follow Rose and Kain. Orion watched them disappear deeper into the market, clutching the wedding invitation and feeling a cool breeze brush past him, lifting his hair and his navy jacket. He sighed, and as they were completely out of sight, he turned away and walked on his way.

But it's time to face the truth

I will never be with you