Disclaimer: I don't own Fullmetal Alchemist, but I do own the OC Elric and Mustang kids.
Audrey: 7; Catherine: 10
On most days, Audrey Elric and Catherine Mustang were good friends. They both agreed that brothers were annoying and should be sold whenever possible, alchemy was pretty nifty, and cats were much better than dogs. However, there were also those days when Audrey and Cat continued in the pre-set Elric vs. Mustang schema that their fathers had created a long time ago. Cat would taunt Audrey until she got some kind of response, and Audrey would make sure that Cat's life was an endless cycle of agitation.
Although neither of them knew it yet, this was going to be one of those days.
The two girls were sitting at the Mustang's kitchen table, drawing on some pieces of paper that Cat's father had given them to keep them busy. Cat's father, Roy Mustang, was in the next room talking to Audrey's father, Edward Elric, and the girls were supposed to occupy each other until they were done.
"You know, my daddy's the best daddy in Amestris," Cat said offhandedly as she reached over and picked up a broken blue crayon.
Audrey looked up from the picture she was coloring. "Huh?"
"My daddy. He's the best daddy in the whole world," said Cat, elaborating on her previous statement. She turned the blue crayon over to the side that still had a point and began coloring.
Audrey frowned. "Not the whole world."
"Yep, the whole world," said Cat in a matter-of-fact tone. She grinned at Audrey from across the table. "And probably the universe too, if there are any other daddies out there in space."
Audrey picked up the red crayon and made a violent scribble on her piece of paper. She kicked her feet back and forth under the table and narrowed her grey eyes. "I don't think he is."
"Well, you wouldn't 'cause you don't know any better," said Cat. "See, if my daddy was your daddy, you'd know he's better."
"He isn't," insisted Audrey. She shoved the red crayon against the paper, nearly ripping the flimsy sheet. "My daddy's the best daddy and he was the best alchemist ever."
"My daddy says he wasn't," replied Cat, not even glancing at the other girl. "And anyways, my daddy is in charge of your daddy 'cause he's the boss of the army now. He's more important so that means he's better." Cat pushed her black bangs away from her face and grabbed at the black crayon.
"That doesn't mean anything," said Audrey. "Your daddy just wants to take over the world with mini-skirts. That's what my daddy says."
Cat stopped coloring and scowled at Audrey. "Well, my daddy says that your daddy is a grunt, and he has to do whatever my daddy says. And he said that your daddy is still immature and annoying."
"You don't know what immature means!"
"Yeah, but I bet it's something really, really bad," said Cat as she went back to coloring.
"Bet it isn't," grumbled Audrey. Her red crayon was slowly being eaten away as she rubbed it hard against the paper.
A tense silence teased both of the girls, and they both occasionally glanced up to see how angry the other was. The low murmur of voices and occasional laugh from the other room was the only noise to break the silence.
"My daddy was way better at alchemy than your daddy," said Audrey, returning to a previous argument. "He knows how to all sorts of stuff. He made me a teddy bear yesterday." Well, it had been a few weeks ago and it wasn't with alchemy and the bear was a little scary looking, but Audrey didn't think that the time really mattered. "Your daddy can't make nothing but fire."
"Well, he can blow stuff up!" countered Cat, frowning at Audrey. "He could blow up whatever your daddy made."
"He could not! My daddy would make a wall so he couldn't!"
"Then my daddy would burn down the wall."
"Nu-uh, not if it was a metal wall."
"Then he'd walk around it and blow your daddy up!"
"He would not!" snapped Audrey, leaning forward in her chair, "'Cause my daddy would get him first! He's the smartest."
"He is not," said Cat. The black-haired Mustang girl was inwardly about to erupt, but she managed to suppress the desire for violence. Audrey always became madder when she thought Cat wasn't going to react. "My daddy is smarter than yours. He makes Mom happy when she's angry, and he has to tell his troops and everyone what to do. And he understands alchemy and teaches me. He's so smart, I bet he could go to the moon or something."
"My daddy could go to the moon first and destroy it," replied Audrey. She didn't even know if that was possible, but if it was, her father could do it. "Then your daddy couldn't go there. Even if he could anyways. And he couldn't."
Cat sighed and put down the yellow crayon she had been using. "Audrey. Please, just say that my daddy's better. You know he is."
Audrey gripped her red crayon so hard that it snapped in half. "Nu-uh! My daddy is way, way, way, WAY better than your daddy!"
"He is NOT!" said Cat, finally becoming too angry to hold it in. "Your daddy's a moron!"
"And yours is a mean, bully, fathead!" retorted Audrey, grey eyes bright with anger.
"Yours is a weird loser man!"
"Yours is a stupid, ugly, boss pig!"
"Yours is a one-legged freak!"
Audrey jumped out of her chair, butter blonde hair flying around her face as she advanced towards Cat, the index finger of her right hand pointed towards the older girl like a dagger. She wracked her brain for better insults and finally remembered something really awful that she had heard her father call Roy Mustang once before.
"Well, your daddy is a BASTARD!"
"Audrey Trisha Elric!"
The familiar male, tenor voice stopped Audrey in her tracks. She watched a satisfied smile appear on Cat's face. The older girl was looking in the direction of the door that led from the kitchen to the living room. Audrey let her eyes dart around the room for a way to escape. She judged that she might have an initial speed advantage over her father, and if she slipped under something small, he couldn't get her.
"Turn around," the voice commanded. Drat. Audrey put her feet together and slowly turned around to face the living room door. She locked her eyes onto the scuffed-up black boots, not wanting to look up at the person's face who owned them. "Did I really just hear that out of you?"
"Audrey, look at me."
Audrey's gaze traveled up the dark grey pants leg, over the long, brown coat, past the blue vest, climbed the white collar, crawled past the disappointed frown and finally found the unhappy golden eyes. "Yes, Daddy?"
"Did you call the General what I think you called him?"
Audrey didn't really want to respond to that so she panicked. She ran forward and wrapped her arms around her father's waist, burying her head into his stomach. "Cat made me!" she cried into the cotton. "She said that you were stupid and stuff, and you only have one-leg so you're a loser, and you can't beat her daddy, and I know you can! And she said her daddy is better, and he's not cause you're better! Lots better!"
Audrey felt firm hands grasp her shoulders and gently push her away. "She said all that, did she?" Edward cast an amused look over at Cat who had taken refuge near her own father. Roy had one hand on the top of his daughter's head; whether it was out of affection or to keep her from running off wasn't known. "Still, it isn't right to call the General that name."
"But you did," said Audrey, running the back of her hand across her eyes. "Last week, remember?"
Edward rubbed at the back of his neck and grinned uncomfortably. "Yeah, I know, but I'm an adult. It's different."
"How?" asked Audrey.
"Yes, Fullmetal, how is it different?" asked Roy, a bemused expression on his face. Edward looked as if he would have liked nothing better than to have punched Roy right then, but instead he took a deep breath.
"Well, when adults say things, they know what those things mean. You don't really know what it means, so you don't know why it's entirely appropriate to call the General that name." It was Edward's turn to smirk, and Roy's turn to look annoyed. "And you only get to know what it means when you get older. For now, you don't use that word, got it, brat?"
"Okay, Daddy," said Audrey, rubbing the tip of her shoe against the kitchen tiles. Edward smiled and ruffled her hair.
"Now go on outside. I'll be right after you."
She nodded and rushed past her father, only pausing for a moment to stick her tongue out at Catherine. The black-haired girl crossed her arms and poked her tongue out at Audrey as well. Roy rolled his eyes before tapping his hand against the small of her back.
"Cat, go to your room. It seems that we need to have a talk about how to properly address adults of higher rank, no matter how much they lack in stature."
"I am not short any more!" Edward couldn't hold in the small outburst at the blatant taunt. "I'm way taller than I was before, so leave off!"
"Calm down, Fullmetal, perhaps I wasn't talking about you."
"Yeah, right, and pigs are fluttering about in the air on wings."
Cat covered her mouth to hide a giggle and then, in a more somber mood, headed up the stairs, always obedient to her father. Now that the two girls were gone, their fathers made their way towards the front door.
"Interesting things you teach your kids, Fullmetal," said Roy, sounding more amused than offended. He stopped beside the front door and smirked at the younger man. "I thought they'd at least make it to eleven before they started calling me names."
"They learn fast," said Edward, opening the front door. "Especially when it comes to the important things." He winked at Roy before going after his daughter, catching up with her to put a hand on her shoulder as they walked along the sidewalk.