By Yellow Mask
Spoilers: End of anime spoilers.
Disclaimer: I do not own FMA.
"I still think you're making a mistake," Envy shrugged.
"Nonsense." Dante surveyed the blank-eyed woman in front of her. "Look at her – wonderful body, exotic features, everything a teenage boy could dream of...who else could it be?"
Envy cast his eyes at Rose, the young woman standing eerily still, as though she were hypnotised. His face still spoke of disbelief.
"Who else could it be?" Dante repeated, a touch more forcefully this time, as though to compel the homunculus to agree with her.
Envy shrugged again. "My money's still on the mechanic."
"The who?" Dante frowned, unsettled by the implication that she had overlooked something.
"The mechanic," Envy repeated. "About yea high-" he held his hand at about his eye level "Blonde hair, blue eyes, Winry-something..."
His creator's face was still blank. Envy huffed, then changed his form to that of the Elric's childhood friend. Dante perused his disguise for a few moments, then chuckled and shook her head.
"Not nearly as attractive as her," Dante stated, flicking her thumb at Rose. "And trust me, looks are all a hormone-driven boy like Edward Elric will think about."
Envy changed back into his preferred form, rolling his eyes. Dante could do what she liked – he was still betting on the blonde mechanic. There was no way the pipsqueak would go for the Lior girl – something told him Ed just wasn't that superficial.
More than intriguing, Ed found it downright puzzling. How could Dante have thought he was in love with Rose?
He stared out the window of the train, trying to puzzle it out. He couldn't remember ever acting in an overly-romantic way towards Rose, he couldn't remember ever saying anything that might give anyone that impression...so why had Dante thought he was in love with her?
Though on the other hand, Ed was pleased. She hadn't clued into his feelings for Winry, at least. And that definitely worked in his favour – after all, if it had been Winry confessing she loved him, what would he have done? Played right into Dante's hands, that's what.
So he was probably lucky it had been Rose.
But he still couldn't figure out where Dante got the idea he harboured feelings for Rose.
"What's on your mind?" Hohenheim asked.
Ed's eyes flicked to where his father sat opposite him, and considered ignoring the question. But then he realised that Hohenheim might be able to answer his question.
"What are Dante's views on love?"
Hohenheim started visibly. He hadn't expected that question.
Ed continued. "I mean, she thought I was in love with this girl Al and I met on our travels, and I can't figure out what gave her that idea in the first place."
"Are you?" Hohenheim asked. "In love with that girl?"
He half-expected Ed to blush and stutter out a transparent denial, but his son did neither. Instead, Ed shook his head silently. Hohenheim was surprised – his demeanor was that of a faithful husband denying he'd had an affair, utterly confident and sure of his denial.
He couldn't help feeling that this kind of quite assurance came from being in love with another.
"Well," Hohenheim began, trying to answer the question as best he could. "Dante is rather...shallow...in her views on love. She thinks men merely look for a pretty face, and women just want someone to protect them."
Ed snorted. He could imagine what Winry would say about needing a man to protect her.
But it made a sort of twisted sense. At the very least, it explained why Dante had thought Rose was the perfect candidate. Physically, he supposed Rose was more appealing than Winry. More generous curves, more feminine features, a sort of exotic beauty about her...
But that was just superficial stuff.
Rose was stunningly beautiful, true, but what made Winry special wasn't on the outside. Ed liked that – he always felt like he was in on a special secret. Rose's beauty could be explained by science, defined in his journal, in the list of elements that made up the human body. Elements that just happened to combine in a certain way, to construct a certain body and face that just happened to be more attractive than most. It was genetics – it was dumb luck.
Winry's beauty, however, was of a different quality. He and Al had failed in human transmutation because scientists still didn't have an answer for that missing element – the part that made a person what they really were, the part that people called the soul.
And it was that mysterious element that made Winry beautiful.
Winry's beauty couldn't be pinned down, couldn't be explained...and it could never be understood by someone like Dante. So Dante had chosen Rose, because she could never understand what made Winry so extraordinary.
Ed shook his head. Could Dante really have thought he was that superficial?
AN: Just a short little peice explaining why Dante might have chosen Rose. I always thought it was strange that Dante obviously believed Ed in love with Rose, yet Envy used Winry's form to catch them off-guard when he kidnapped Al. Personally, I thought it showed Envy was more perceptive than his creator, as far as Ed's feelings go.