Red Roses2: It's most certainly NOT my first yaoi, but . . . it IS the first of this . . . kind.
Disclaimer: I don't own Fullmetal Alchemist. It belongs to Hiromu Arakawa.
Hoenheim stared at the written page in front of him. He sat on the bed of his eldest, staring at what he knew he shouldn't have read, but didn't manage to stop himself. He stared at the written proof of something that might have been preventable, if only he had stayed with them.
No, not Trisha's death. Not the human transmutation. Not the burning of the house, or the joining the military, or anything like that. Nothing that had anything to do with alchemy.
This was something completely different.
Hoenheim never thought either of his sons would ever be gay, let alone . . . .
He stared at the words that mocked him, as though they didn't say "And Al told me that he loved me the way . . . the way I wanted Mustang to love me", but "THIS IS YOUR FAULT, VAN HOENHEIM." His jaw hung there, practically begging flies to enter and build a permanent residence. His glasses slipped down to the end of his nose, but he didn't bother to push them back up.
He almost didn't want to read the rest, but he made himself turn the page anyway.
"I wasn't sure what to do. But . . . but somehow we fell into a different kind of relationship. I'm not even sure how it happened. Even though he's a suit of armor, he brushed my tears away so gently . . . ."
Hoenheim's glasses fell off and landed on the book. This was back when he was still in the armor. In the armor. He looked at the clock. Ed and Al weren't supposed to be back for another couple of hours. He looked back at the book and continued to read. The more he read, the shock began to wear off, and a new kind of shock set in. The more he read, the more Ed started to sound like . . . like the uke of the relationship.
Especially when he reached the sex entries. Hoenheim's face turned a deep, cherry red. Hoenheim had to remind himself how Ed was outside of these pages, outside of Ed's own head. He would've been ready to swear that they weren't the same person. But that would be lying. Hoenheim had to admit that, around Al, he was always a little different. More calm . . . more happy. . . .
Hoenheim thought back to when Ed and Al were little children. Ed had been a very protective older brother. He used to beat up any bullies who tried to pick on Al, even at the tender age of three. He tried to help him and Trisha take care of Al, played with him, kept him company. Of course, there were the times when Al would annoy Ed, and probably vice versa. He never would've thought they'd end up like . . . this.
He supposed he did sort of notice that Edward didn't have any interest in girls. But he could've sworn that Al was. . . . Shows what he knew.
Then came the entries of when Al regained his body. They had been unable to give Ed flesh limbs, and yet Ed seemed to be okay with that. What he hadn't been okay with was Hoenheim moving in with them. At first he thought he knew all of the reasons, but . . . maybe this had something to do with it.
"Al says he wants to get to know Dad better. I say who cares. But I'll put up with him. For Al's sake."
"Al's really happy now. Happier than he ever was in the armor. Quite understandable, I'd say. He likes being able to feel, smell, and taste things again. He laughs when I worry over him when he gets hurt. But . . . I kind of like how he's not worrying about me as much. Well, in bed at least. At first I was worried he wouldn't be ready for that with his new body – well, not really worried about him, but worried that I'd make him uncomfortable or inconvenience him – but he couldn't wait. Dad barely got out of the house for his outing thing, and we didn't even make it to the bed! He was amazing. I don't think this hicky will go away for weeks! It'll be a little hard to hide from Dad and Mustang, but I don't care."
Hoenheim paled as he suddenly remembered how many evenings in their household go the same way: Hoenheim goes out for his walk which usually takes a few hours (he'd sometimes do grocery shopping if Al said they needed anything), and if work wasn't keeping Ed, Al and Ed would stay at home, dinner already eaten by all of them, and when Hoenheim would come back, they'd both be asleep. He never thought it was strange. He usually came back kind of late, and both always wake up long before he does in the morning, so it seemed very normal.
Hoenheim suddenly received a vivid image of Al pining Ed to the floor, fucking him senseless. He covered his eyes, unable to remember why he opened the diary in the first place. Deciding that it was like alchemy – once you do it, there's no turning back – he turned back to the book and turned the page.
"I have no idea how Al got so good at kissing, but it's like he's been doing it his entire life. He's incredible. Sometimes I think I don't deserve him. I don't share this thought with him. He's already debunked it more than once. But I can't help but wonder if he'd be happier with someone else. If he'd want to be with someone else. He tells me he'll never love anyone more than me, but . . . I don't want to be selfish. I want him to do whatever he wants, even if he wants to pull away from me. I – I know it would hurt. I think it would hurt more than anything else. But we'd still love each other. He's my brother, after all."
Edward's selflessness never ceased to amaze Hoenheim. He always felt awe for Ed's ability to sacrifice everything and anything for those he cares about, but Al especially.
Hoenheim watched the date change, and with it, the mood of the paragraphs.
"My lips are bruised, and I don't really mind, but it really bothers Al. He doesn't like thinking that he's capable of hurting me – but he's not! It doesn't hurt. Just stings a little. I can live with it, though. He shouldn't worry, but he does anyway. He doesn't believe me when I say it's not a big deal."
"He hates seeing blood on the sheets the morning after. It's not often, but he wishes it didn't happen at all. I tell him it's fine, that it's normal to happen on occasion, but he's starting to freak out over the smallest things. It's kind of weird how he's a wild, undeniably sensual and hot being when we do it, but he's so hesitant, worried, and concerned when we're not. I guess he just loses himself in the moment, but I wish he wouldn't regret it. I don't regret it at all. I love it when he does that. Maybe I'm just a masochist. But I don't care if it hurts or bleeds. I just want him to love me, love being with me, love doing me."
"He won't look at me. He won't touch me. He won't do anything with me. He barely talks to me. He hasn't touched me in any way for a week now. It's torture. I wish he wasn't afraid of hurting me."
"Havoc asked me what was wrong. I told him it was nothing. He didn't believe me. I think he told Hawkeye and Mustang that something's up with me. Is it that obvious? I just want Al to have something to do with me again."
Hoenheim frowned. Suddenly it all made a lot of sense. This was the cause of the depression that had set into the house. He sighed. How the hell was he supposed to fix something like that?
"Mustang asked if everything was okay at home. I told him it was fine. He doesn't believe me. I hope he doesn't try to pry anymore."
"Havoc asked me if I was doing anything that evening. I told him no. He asked if I wanted to go with him to dinner. I said sure and if anyone else was coming. He said no. I was about to ask if Al could come, but I didn't. I guess I do need a break from coming home to the same painful mess every day. I told him I'd see him around 7."
"Dinner with Havoc went nicely. We talked about not-important things, though I could tell he wanted to talk about what was up with me. I avoided it like the plague. It was easy after I told him it was family stuff and that I didn't want to talk about it. I told him it would resolve itself and that we'd all be back to normal soon. I hope I'm right."
"Havoc invited me to dinner again. This time Breda, Falman, and Fuery are coming. I'm kind of liking this."
"Al asked me where I was when I came home. I told him the truth – out at dinner with Havoc and the others. He asked what took me so long. I said I lost track of time. He was quiet for a while, and asked if I had fun. I smiled and said yes. It's the truth. It was a lot of fun. Making fun of Havoc and his girl problems is always fun, though I just watch the others do it. I'm not sure what changed with Al, but he crossed the room and kissed me. It was like reaching heaven after a pilgrimage through hell."
"I had dinner with Havoc again. When I came home, Al asked where I was again, and after I told him, he was all over me. I like the change, but I wonder why it seems to be Havoc that brings it about."
Hoenheim's eyes widened as he slowly came to the same realization as Ed did a few paragraphs down.
"I think Al's jealous I'm spending time with Havoc. I guess I have been going out for dinner a lot more than I used to. Without him, I mean. I think I'll bring him next time."
Hoenheim checked the date, and realized he had reached the last entry. And that tonight was another "Dinner with Havoc" night. . . . The one when Al gets to join.
He heard the front door open and slam. Hoenheim carelessly threw the diary onto the bed and hurried down the stairs.
"Al?" Ed's voice echoed down the entry hall, stopping Hoenheim in his tracks. "Is – is something wrong?" Hesitancy and fear dripped off of the eldest's voice. Hoenheim swallowed hard, waiting for his youngest to say something.
"No. Not at all," Al said, in a falsely calm voice. "I – I just - ." Hoenheim could hear the tears now. He crept down the stairs and found the painful scene that was unfolding. Al turned towards Ed, tears flowing down his cheeks and desperation in his eyes. "You're mine! He can't have you!"
Ed's eyes widened in surprise. "Al, what are you talking about?
"It's obvious he wants you!"
"He's straight, Al. A girlfriend dumps him every week. Besides, that shouldn't matter. I love you."
"I want to be the one who makes you happy! Not him! I want to be the only one!"
"You are, Al. You are. What's this all about?" Ed cupped Al's cheek, wiping the tears away with his thumb. Al grabbed Ed's wrist and pinned him to the wall. Hoenheim kept very still, frightened of what might happen if they realized he was there watching them. He'd never seen Al ever act like this; he wondered if Ed had.
Al crashed his lips into Ed's, kissing hungrily, needing. Ed submitted himself entirely, not fighting against Al's grip or force, almost acting like a rag dog as Al pushed his leg against Ed's groin. The kiss turned open-mouthed, both their cheeks flushing, Al's more so than Ed's.
Hoenheim wondered what other fathers would feel watching their sons make out with each other and feeling each other up. Anger? Humiliation? Disgust? Hoenheim felt none of that.
He pitied them. Maybe it was because he already knew so much of how Ed felt. Maybe it was because it didn't take an alchemist to figure out what Al was thinking and how insecure he felt. Maybe it was to relieve his soul of the guilt that set in him. He felt like this was his fault. Maybe if he had stuck around, Ed would never have developed a fear of abandonment (didn't take a psychiatrist to figure that one out). Maybe if he had paid more attention, Al wouldn't have gone through so many hormonal changes and imbalances that he wasn't used to the way he did. Maybe he could've prevented, if not the incest, then the pain that was about to become of it.
Al and Ed gasped for breath. Their chests inflated and deflated together, pressed against each other. Ed rested his forehead on Al's, smiling. Al pulled back and inspected Ed's lips. A frown set into his features.
"It's okay, Al. I love you."
Al's face tore up, tears rolling down his cheeks again.
"You're – you're mine . . . and you shouldn't be." Al said. Hoenheim lowered his head. Ed's smile disappeared.
"W-what are you talking about?" Ed said, his voice trembling.
"You shouldn't be mine, but you are!" Al sobbed. "I propositioned you in a moment of weakness, and - ,"
"Wha - ? Moment of weakness? Al, this whole thing started years ago. What's gotten into you?"
Al let go of Ed and balled his hands into fists.
"All I've done is hurt you! You say it doesn't matter, but it does! You mean so much to me, Ed! Sometimes I wonder if you realize how much, with how you let me – let me use you like that!"
"Use me? Al, I like it when you do those things to me - ."
"I hurt you! That's all I've ever done!"
"That's not true!"
"It is! You just refuse to admit it! You'd be safer and happier with someone else!"
Hoenheim watched as Ed's face contorted into the essence of terror.
"Wh-what are you saying?"
"You'd be safer and – and happier if you were with Havoc or – or Mustang or - !" Al hiccupped and sobbed, unable to stop himself from breaking down. But he stayed standing. Ed, however, looked like he'd fall to his knees if the wall and Al weren't preventing him from doing so.
"You – you're breaking up with me?"
Hoenheim suddenly realized the dampness on his face was tears. He wiped them away, and his heart tore with Ed's as Al ran away from him – past Hoenheim without noticing he was there – and up the stairs. The sound of Al's bedroom door slamming echoed down the stairs.
Ed fell to his knees, his eyes wide and body numb. Tears slowly fell down and dripped to the hardwood floor. Hoenheim hesitated to take a step towards his eldest, but the sound of Al emerging from his bedroom stopped him. He looked back up the stairs, and his eyes widened at the suitcase in his hand. Al looked surprised to see Hoenheim standing at the bottom of the stairs. They didn't say anything to each other. Al merely walked down the stairs, past Hoenheim – not sparing him a glance, and forced himself to not look at Ed. Ed's eyes widened as he realized where Al was going with that suitcase.
"NO!" Ed screamed, standing and running at the same time. He grabbed Al's elbow, but Al pushed him away. Ed fell onto his butt, his face the epitome of the emotion one feels when their world crashes and burns to ashes. "Al!"
Al opened the front door and slammed it.
"AL!" Ed shrieked, getting back up and grabbing the doorknob.
Hoenheim grabbed Ed from behind and pulled him away from the door.
"AL, COME BACK! AL! DON'T LEAVE ME, PLEASE! AL!" His screams sounded like a pathetic, dying creature. Hoenheim's tears fell onto Ed's shoulder as he pried Ed's fingers off of the doorknob, the door open and letting the cold in and Ed's screams out into the world. Hoenheim closed the door and forced Ed to face him.
"He'll come back when he's ready. Okay, Edward?" Hoenheim said, placing his hands on his eldest's shoulders.
Ed collapsed against his father and cried as hard as he could.
Red Roses2: I swear, I write the most depressing shit ever. There might be a continuation, but more than likely, it's a one-shot.