A/N: I don't know how well this story is going to be but I felt I should at least post it up. The story might updated not every week because I have another fanfic and another story on FictionPress. This story is related to The Lightning That Thunders. So I don't know if it's necessary to read that before reading this one. But if it helps you to understand it better, go ahead. Oh, here's the disclaimer that I will only put once in this story.
DISCLAIMER: I don't not own Fullmetal Alchemist or any of its character. I just own this fanfic and its story line. That's it.
CHAPTER 1-Naminé Meets the Crimson Alchemist:
Today, Southern HQ was adding a new member to its ranks. Sitting in his spacious office, bookcase neatly arranged behind him, Basque Gran glared over the papers in his hands. Each sheet had compiled information on the new recruit. Her name, her current address, her age, her height, and so on. However, he was more concerned with her credentials. She never had a job before which meant she lacked discipline. She had no combat experience whatsoever, meaning that a rookie was supposed to work under his command. That was the worst kind soldier he could have. To make matters worse, she was a woman. He knew several women in the military but most had desk jobs. Very few of them proved to be anything other than a pile of emotions ready to blow. He looked away and stared at the woman with his green eyes. "Naminé Thomson, right?" He said, finally addressing the woman in the room.
Naminé nodded. She shifted in place a bit. She didn't think he thought that she was impressive. Her appearance seemed to add to that impression. A pair of baggy sweats, old sneakers, and unfortunately messy hair quickly put in a ponytail. She had overslept this morning and she would have been late otherwise if she had wasted time to freshen up properly. When she realized that the man was glaring at her still, she caught her mistake. Immediately she stood up straighter. "Yes, sir. You are Colonel Gran, right?"
The man nodded, the frown on his face never coming off. "I heard that you passed the Alchemy test with flying colors. Lightning, isn't it?"
It took her some time to understand that Lightning was her alchemist ability. Naminé nodded her head, her ponytail swaying. "Yes, sir." She started rocking back and forth, her blue eyes focusing on the man in front of her. Already, he didn't like her much and she wondered what had she done so wrong. To distract her thoughts, she focused on the blue uniform that he was wearing. She supposed she would have to wear that, too. It wasn't very becoming.
Finally after what had seemed like hours of deliberation, he placed the papers in a folder and put it in a drawer. "You will begin work tomorrow."
She nodded and brushed her brown bangs out of her face a bit. The worst of this appointment was over. "Is it possible to get a tour of Southern HQ, sir?" She asked. She had a feeling what his answer would be and her guess wasn't too far off.
"I don't have time to waste on tours."
"Couldn't someone else-!"
The door opened and a soldier walked in. He wasn't formally dressed like the colonel. He wore black, sleeveless shirt and the blue military pants. His long dark hair was pulled back. Naminé didn't know what to think of this man. The only thing that came to mind was that he was probably rude and had a foul mouth. That was what the look in his eyes were telling her and the way he had walked in here as well. Their eyes met and she quickly looked away. She didn't want to make 'friends' with the wrong people so soon.
"You need something, Major?" Gran asked.
The major looked away from the woman and stared at the colonel. "Not really." He was just passing through. He had heard something about a new alchemist and he wanted to see who it was for himself. She didn't look like much of threat. That was fine with him. It made things around the place more manageable.
Gran shot his officer a look. "Then leave the room, Crimson Alchemist."
"If you say so, Colonel." The Crimson Alchemist smirked and turned around to leave. He glanced at the woman again and caught her eyes on him. He realized that she was staring at his pocket watch, slowly putting two and two again. Although he was curious about her abilities, he walked out of the room and closed the door behind him. Now she was able to speak.
"What does he do, sir?" Naminé asked. His title had told her nothing about him, making her wonder if hers would carry such mystery. Crimson Alchemist, she thought to herself. She had to admit that the title did sound vaguely familiar.
"He blows things up," Gran said simply.
"I see." Now she remembered. The Crimson Alchemist was some bomb happy freak who took great pleasure blowing things up and causing others pain. To think she had been so close to such a maniac was a bit nerve-wracking and she hoped to never see him around any time soon. The looks he had given her had not been the friendliest. It was as if he was trying to size her up. Maybe I should have taken the extra ten minutes to freshen up.
Gran pulled out an envelope and a state pocketwatch. He then pulled out a document from the envelope and glanced over it. "Your official title will be the Lightning Alchemist."
"Not really original, is it?" Naminé was hoping for something more creative, but she supposed it was okay. Although it was a dead giveaway to what she could do, she could deal with it. It suited her just fine if anything and was easy to remember. Her blue eyes landed on the pocket watch on the desk. She picked up the state watch, assuming that it came with the title. Why else did the Crimson Alchemist have one himself?
The Colonel looked up sharply. "Did I give it to you, soldier?" Gran growled.
"No . . . sir." She placed it back on the desk and folded her hands. Another mistake on her part. This couldn't get any better.
Gran inspected the soldier, wondering how much trouble she would cause at Southern Headquarters and what would happen if she started to hang around the wrong crowd. It would probably stress the hell out of him and unfortunately, it seemed so likely to happen. He glared at her before saying, "Take it and go."
Naminé took the watch and eagerly left the room. After the door closed behind her, she sighed out of relief. Finally she was away from the glare. Now she could relax without worry. She thought about what she'd do the moment she got out this place. Vi had invited Naminé to come to a restaurant with her and Mel. She could go if they didn't change their minds. She could even celebrate her recent accomplish. "The Lightning Alchemist," she repeated to herself, coveting the shiny new pocket watch. She leaned against the wall, a smile on her lips. The object in her hands symbolized her position in the military. She wished her father could share this moment with her. No doubt he would be proud as well. Suddenly a voice interrupted her thoughts.
"Are you going to stand there all day with that stupid grin on your face?"
Naminé looked down the hallway and saw the Crimson Alchemist staring at her, his arms folded across his chest. She stood up straight, thinking about the rumors she had heard so many times. She was out of the safety of Gran's office and in an empty hall way with the mad bomber. The colonel's glare suddenly seemed worth facing. Hold your ground, she told herself. He can't do anything to you. She cleared her throat loudly and spoke. "I was just about to go somewhere else."
He put his hands in his pockets and approached her, his gold eyes still on her. She sounded confident and brave but was it mostly talk? He stopped in front of her and his golden eyes traced the contours of her body. He met her gaze and that was all he needed to see. She was scared of him. Apparently his reputation preceded him better than he had thought. While she was distracted by her own thoughts,he swiftly snatched the watch from her. "They actually accept women as state alchemists?"
"Give that back," Naminé said trying to grab it from him. The guy easily put it out of her reach by lifting his arm up. He was, after all, taller than she was. She stepped closer to him and tried again. She could only imagine how childish this must have looked. It was like she was in second grade all over again and someone was trying to play keep-away with her doll. She tried jumping now, not seeing any other alternative.
When it became clear she wouldn't reach it, the Crimson Alchemist smirked. "What's your name?"
She didn't bother answering his question. She didn't like him at all and he didn't deserve to know such vital information. She focused on the task at hand. "If you don't give me back that watch, I'm going to kick you extremely hard in the groin." She hoped that her threat sounded menacing enough because she was getting tired of this game. She wanted it to end now.
Kimblee laughed. "I'll simply blow you to bits," he responded. Naminé narrowed her eyes at him and continued jumping. She was clearly a stubborn woman. "What's your name?" He repeated, wondering when she would tell him.
"I'm not telling you. Just give me back my pocket watch!"
"Maybe I should keep it if you won't answer my question."
"You have to be the most childish person I have ever met in my life."
"Are you sure?"
"Of course I am!" Naminé stopped jumping and clenched her fists. If it was a fight he was looking for, she'd give him one.
The guy stared at her, the smirk still on his face. Then he said, "Wait till you meet Romberg."
She dropped her guard, a quizzical look on her face. "Who?"
The Crimson Alchemist didn't answer. He simply threw her the pocket watch and then he walked down the hallway. Naminé glared at his retreating back, not understanding the easy surrender. "Come back here! I'm not done with you yet!"
"Too bad, babe," he called as he disappeared around the corner.
"Babe?" Naminé said in disbelief. He had given her a pet name. Who did he think he was anyway. Now she hated him. He was such a jackass to her. Naminé's eyes glanced down at the pocket watch. Her eyebrow arched. It was glowing brighter and brighter. Then suddenly she remembered what Gran had told her and she threw it down the hallway. The pocket watch exploded in midair. She watched in shock as the tiny metal pieces fell onto the floor.
Naminé's blue eyes narrowed. "I'm going to get that jackass."
It was the next day. Naminé felt so nervous as she stood on the stairs outside of the headquarters. Her blue eyes stared at the Ametris flag that hung in from of the building. It was her first day at work. She was wearing the military uniform proudly, similar to the one her father had used to wear. Due to her current status as a state alchemist, she was wearing the badges of a major. Could she handle this? She hoped that ten hours would go by quickly. Most of the time would probably be dedicated to paperwork, the rest of it would be some alone time. She didn't anyone but Colonel Gran and she didn't want to hang out with him during lunch. Maybe she would find somewhere or better yet someone would find her. The breeze blew and she placed her hair behind her ear.
She flinched. It was his voice again. Reluctantly, the woman turned around and gave the person a dirty look. There was the arrogant bastard again. This time he was with another guy. "You again." She hardly paid attention to the man next to him. He wasn't the one who had blown up her watch and forced her to ask Gran for a replacement.
The alchemist smirked. "You remember that I mentioned you had to meet someone yesterday?" He caught the flicker across her face. So she did remember. That was good then. He nodded toward the man next to him. "This is Thaddeus Romberg."
For the first time, Naminé stared at the guy. He had brown eyes and mahogany hair. He seemed respectable but looks were often deceiving. She had learned that lesson four years ago. If this guy was worst than the his buddy, she didn't want to stay around and get to know the man.
"I prefer the name Thad," Romberg told her. Then he turned toward the Crimson Alchemist. "Kimblee, you were right. She's definitely something to check out."
Naminé shook her head in disgust and started to walk up the stairs. Romberg was no different than Kimblee and she wasn't going to stick around to hear such sexist comments. It was like no one had respect for her in this place. At least none of the men she had the pleasure of meeting. She picked up the pace but didn't get much further; someone had grabbed her wrist. She looked back and saw it was Kimblee. "Let go now," she said.
"Can't do that, babe," the Crimson Alchemist said. "You still haven't given me your name."
Her blue eyes narrowed at the petname. She needed to set the record straight right now before it became a permanent habit. "My name is not 'babe'." She tried to yank her wrist away but the guy had a firm grip on him. She tugged again to no avail. The man found this humorous and Naminé knew that as well. She continued pulling until he said something else that got under her skin.
"Would 'bitch' be more a more acceptable name for you?"
"You're just asking me to shock you."
"Wait," Romberg said, interrupting the argument. He walked up the stairs and peered at the woman closely. "You'rethe Lightning Alchemist?" Romberg walked behind her, examining her from head to toe. He patted her ass out of curiosity and didn't pay heed to the shocked gasp. He continued talking as if what he had done was nothing. "I thought it was a guy. But I suppose a female is always better."
He is actually . . .When Naminé felt Romberg's pat turn into a grope, she kicked him in the balls. She was about to do the same to Kimblee, whether he threatened to blow her up or not, when someone laughed in the background. Naminé looked at the source of the sound. There was a woman standing on the stairs. She had platinum blond hair and green eyes. Instead of wearing the military pants, she wore the blue skirt. She also had on high heels. She was pointing and laughing at Romberg, who was on the stairs holding his groin. Apparently, she found all this amusing. "You had that coming for weeks, Romberg," the woman said in a teasing voice.
Kimblee finally stopped smirking and released Naminé's wrist. "Isabelle, what are you doing here?"
"Nothing," she said as she walked up to Naminé. She extended a hand. "Allow me to introduce myself. I'm Isabelle Stonewall. What's your name?"
Naminé glanced at Kimblee and Romberg then at Isabelle. If she hadn't appeared nice, she wouldn't have answered her question. She shook hands with the blonde. "I'm Naminé Thomson."
"You have to be new here. That's the only reason they're acting this way."
"What do you mean?"
"They're having some stupid competition about who can get the most girls. Unfortunately, it's fifty to fifty and they've dated all the suitable girls here. Until you showed up. So you're the tiebreaker now."
Naminé raised her eyebrows. How can this woman say it like it was no big deal? "Is that so?" She glanced at Romberg and then at Kimblee. When she came here, she had hoped to escape hell. However, that seemed to be highly unlikely. She folded her arms and sighed. Southern HQ, the second hell she would come to know.
A/N: Yeah. Short. I know. But I have to see how many people will actually read this story. So if you want to read more, review. And for those who are wondering, Naminé mentions the 'first hell' to Kimblee in Chapter 7 in The Lightning That Thunders. She doesn't really calls it that during their conversation but it is the reason why she joins the military. Anyway, till later.