Yes, this is a Fullmetal Alchemist fic. My first, in fact, and it will be based off the anime, not the mange. I'm sorry if I get a few town names or something wrong, but there is no actual site with the village names listed. As it is, I only know major names, but that shouldn't be a main problem with this story.
Summary: The sins no longer trust their Master, and seek to gain power their own way. To do this, they look to the old ouroboros legend that talks of a special type of chimera that has the ability to gain full control of the philosopher's, and they seek to gain control over this. Unfortunately for Ed, he's about to becoming an unwilling participant.
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"She cannot be trusted."
It was a soft, almost soothing voice that whispered this. Silky black hair draped over perfectly shaped shoulder and down the length of the woman's curved back. Purple eyes were half closed in thought as the woman made her statement.
"By 'she', you mean our Master?" came another voice.
Thin, lipstick covered lips thinned. "Who else?" The pale face of Lust turned toward another black haired woman. Like her, this woman was wearing a revealing black dress that visibly showed the ouroboros tattoo. Lust allowed her eyes to travel slowly, sizing up the woman. "You know that; do you, not, Sloth?" A smooth smile tugged at her lips, looking too much like a smirk.
Sloth eyed Lust carefully, a small smirk coming to form. She closed her eyes as she spoke. "Our Master has never given us any reason to distrust her, nor has she ever given us a reason to defy her orders."
Lust chuckled softly; though the sound echoed in the abandoned church they were in. The window glasses were all destroyed, and bits of glass were scattered about the church, reflecting the light from the open window and making it glow. Moss covered gray stone made up the church, giving it a medieval look. Up at the front of the church was simply an offering table, with no cross, no statue of some man, and no way of telling what sort of god had once been worshipped here.
"And yet she has never given us a reason to trust her," came Lust's soft reply. "Time and time again, our Master has sent us out to lead the Elric brothers along on some unknown path."
"The path to the philosopher's stone," Sloth stated. Her voice neither questioning nor defiant. "Unless, of course, you think otherwise?"
Lust allowed her smile to widen ever so slightly. "Oh no, she has them following bread crumb after bread crumb in hopes of finding out how to make the philosopher's stone, but at the same time their little adventures lead them to the discovery of our weakness."
Sloth allowed a pitying chuckle to escape. "It's not that hard, Lust," she said softly. "After all, Greed did have a rather large mouth."
Lust's smile thinned. "True." They eyed each other apprehensively. "But at the same time, our Master's games lead us, her servant homunculi, into near death with the elder Elric."
"And why wouldn't my son wish to kill us?" Sloth asked, eyes bright, almost as if she were filled with a mother's pride.
"I am not talking about your sons reasoning's," Lust sneered, "I am talking about our Master's will in all of this."
Sloth gave a soft sigh, leaning back against her chair as she eyed the broken windows thoughtfully. There were a few pigeon's that resided in the abandoned church roof tops that Wrath was currently catching with a childish glee, but with a monster's blood lust. Each time he caught one, he threw it to Gluttony, who swallowed the crushed bird and soon begged for more, earning a childish giggle from their youngest homunculi.
"I am aware that her motives are selfish," Sloth stated. "All us homunculi know that our Master is greedy, wishing for the stone simply to trade body after body to keep her life going, not matter how… soiled," Sloth finished quietly, dwelling on the word as memories flooded her of a man that goes by the name of Hohenheim…
Lust nodded. "She cannot completely control the philosopher's stone," she stated knowingly, looking down at her nails, almost as if in boredom.
Sloth smiled like an indulgent mother. "Do you really believe that?" she asked, though not questioningly. "She promises us to turn us into humans, and having seven angry homunculi is not safe for anyone, including the Master."
Lust eyed Sloth carefully, eyes guarded. "It wouldn't matter," she said softly.
"No." Lust's voice hardened. "It is simply because we fear her."
Sloth didn't say anything. It was true, and there was no point in denying it. "Where are you going with all of this?" Sloth asked carefully, pulling back a strand of black hair behind her ears. "You say our Master cannot control the philosopher's stone, but do you believe you can?"
"Don't be silly," Lust laughed softly, standing and walking over to the prayer alter. "Aside from your adoptive, none of us can perform alchemy," Lust said, watching Wrath chase Gluttony around as if he were a simple amusement. Lust looked back at Sloth. "Do you know why and how Chimera's were created?"
"I have never been one for history, Lust, and I am failing to see any relevance in this question."
"Do try to be patient, dear," Lust said, face mocking. "And here I thought you were Sloth." Sloth's eyes narrowed dangerously, her body shifting ever so slightly like churning water.
Lust ignored her for the moment and pressed down on a single brick with a strange rod with carvings in it that Sloth hadn't noticed before. As the rod was forced into the brick, the alter moved on its own, as if it were revealing a hidden passage way. Alas, there was no hidden passageway. There was just a three foot deep hole that Sloth could not look down at from where she was. Lust, who stood directly above it, grabbed an object from it. It was a book, though the title seemed to be made out of stone. Lust ran a hand over the book almost lovingly and showed the front to Sloth, making the homunculi's eyes widen slightly. On the cover, was an ouroboros that had been carved into it. Lust opened the book, revealing pages that seemed to be made from some type of metal. Perhaps so that it would never fade away?
"Long ago, chimera's were made for the same reason homunculi's were made," Lust said softly, finger's still caressing the book.
"Let me guess, for love?"
Lust ignored the sarcasm. "That may have been done for you and me," Lust said patiently, "but there are other's that have been made for much greedier purposes."
"Power," Sloth stated carelessly, as if that was the only possible answer though not worth mentioning.
"Power," Lust agreed. "To bring back a human, whether it be for love or scientific purposes, it all comes down to one answer."
"Us." There was no falter in the answer.
"Yes," Lust said smoothly. "A human who wishes to play God can create such horrible things." Lust turned a few pages in the book. "Of course each creation is powerful," she continued, "if the human could do it correctly."
"And still, what does this have to do with chimeras?"
"Chimera's are such simple creatures now a days," Lust said quietly, thoughtfully, and completely ignoring Sloth's question. "However, the true Chimera has a very special power."
Sloth's eyes flickered. "The true chimera?"
Lust nodded. "The first ever chimera," she stated. "It was the one to create the gate."
There was a tense silence throughout the church. Even Gluttony and Wrath had stopped running. The smaller homunculus was shaking horribly, eyes wide with fright just at the mere mention of the gate.
"Stop it!" Wrath roared, running angrily at Lust. "Shut up! Shut up! I don't want to hear it!"
Lust sighed, finger's growing in slight warning. "Sloth, do silence your adoptive."
Wrath glared, continuing to shout, "Shut up! Shut up!"
Sloth walked over to the furious boy, wrapping her arms around him and bring him to her chest in a hug. "Hush, my child," she soothed. "The gate will not get you, nor will you ever go back."
"Don't wanna," Wrath mumbled, tightening his grip around Sloth. "I don't want to, mama," he moaned.
"I know, child, now hush."
Lust watched the interaction, face showing no impatience. "As I was saying," she said coldly, "the first chimera was the one to create the gate. As the gate is our creator, it knew we needed… nutrients," Lust said after a moment's thought, uncomfortable with the human term for supplying their body with strength.
"The philosopher's stone," Sloth stated. Her smile widened. "The only one that can truly use it without equivalent exchange."
Lust nodded. "While their Master could use the stone, there was still a small price. The stone disappeared with time, and what she created was not always pure. Her body was proof enough, and thus was the reason why Lust did not trust her.
"What was the chimera?" Sloth asked, rubbing a hand through Wrath's hair soothingly.
Lust opened her mouth to say, but it was surprisingly Wrath the answered. "The snake," he hissed out, eyes watery. "Just 'membered," he mumbled.
"The ouroboros," Lust supplied. "The red serpent with hundred's of eyes that always watches." Lust smiled maliciously. "Eyes that are purple, our eyes to be exact."
Sloth said nothing for a moment. Her eyes traveled to the book in Lust's hands, a hearty sounding laugh escaping her. "My dear Lust, that wouldn't happen to be the homunculi bible, would it?"
"Perhaps," Lust replied flippantly, shutting Sloth up. Lust gestured at the church. "Would you ever believe it, dearie? Us homunculi used to be worshipped like the gods."
At this bit of information, Sloth, Wrath and Gluttony looked around at the destroyed church with a new awe, hoping to find some secret that could answer their questions.
"While the idea of having follower's does sound appealing, what does this having to do with anything now? We're in a new age, Lust, and we are simply beasts and monsters to the humans." Sloth watched Lust, already know the other sin knew this, but she wanted information. "Just where have you been getting this information?" she asked, sitting back down on the bench.
Wrath continued to burrow into her side, though he still watched Lust attentively. Gluttony too was sitting on the ground, watching Lust. But that may have simply been because he always listens to Lust. It was a mystery Sloth wasn't too keen on learning, though she assumed it was simply a strange connection that the homunculi sometimes get with one another. The proof that she had a strange connection was sitting at her side, wearing her son's arm and leg as if it were his own. The world was simply a strange place.
Lust narrowed her eyes. "You are not a fool, Sloth," she stated impatiently, flipping her hair angrily. "You know by now that I have gotten all this information from this book, this church." Lust gestured all around. When she was done, she brought out the rod from before. It was a simple metal pole, but on the bottom was the carving of an ouroboros, just like the one that was tattooed on them all.
Sloth sighed, a bit of impatience finally showing. "I think its time you tell us your plan," she said coldly. "You have already briefed us with an interesting history lesson, as well as your mistrust towards our Master, but still you have not told us your plan."
"Soon, Sloth, it will become our plan."
Sloth narrowed her eyes. "It will be my plan as well if it appeals to me."
Lust nodded. She had expected nothing less. "There is prophecy, I suppose for lack of a better word," Lust mused. "No, perhaps not, as it does not tell the fate of a single person." Lust sighed, hating to use such foreign human concepts. Prophecies, fate, god… "There is a passage in this book that tells how to control a real philosopher's stone, though that is not what it used to be called," Lust said musingly. "It was called the Serpent's Scale, for it was believed that the stone was actually a scale from the ouroboros that gave power to the holder, but the only true person to control it had to be an ouroboros as well."
Sloth tilted her head. "Creature's do not have the power of Alchemy," she stated. "Though in Pride's recent research, he has had a scientist find a way to allow a human chimera to use Alchemy, though not quite effectively," Sloth said catching on. "You wish to create an ouroboros chimera."
It was Wrath that spoke next. "But how will you find one?" he asked with all the innocence of a child.
"That would be where I come in," a new voice stated.
They all turned to the broken window a where a long, green haired man with tight leather clothes was standing. He looked laid back, leaning against the wall with his arms folded, smirk in place as he stared down at them all.
"So Envy is in on this as well," Sloth stated. She turned to the newcomer. "And here I thought you didn't want to become human."
Envy chuckled. "Oh, that hasn't changed, but the fact that I could have that sort of power in my grasp is more than enough to catch my interest."
"And our Master?"
"Wouldn't dare let one of us use the stone's powers," Envy said offhandedly, though his eyes turned cold with envy, his main emotion.
"Ah, but the stone can only be truly controlled by a chimera, as Lust has stated," Sloth replied.
Lust sighed. "You never speak what is already known. You just always wait for it to be said first."
Sloth smiled, looking pleased. "Perhaps it is because I could be wrong in my guesswork and simply wait for you to confirm it before I speak my mind."
"Yea, whatever," Envy grunted, jumping down to meet them. He landed perfectly on his feet, unbothered by the large fall that would have surely broken a human's foot had he landed on the hard floor without protection. "So are you in or out?" he demanded.
"In on your plan?" Sloth asked, amused. "You still have yet to tell. All you have spoken of is how you wish to make an ouroboros chimera and have it control the philosopher's stone." Her eyes strayed towards Lust. "Or perhaps I should call it the Serpent's Scale?"
"Our plan is to gain control," Lust said seriously. "For too long have we been under someone's control, and now we have a way to break free. When we get the stone, we can do what we want. Whether it's to become human, gain power, or be in control, we can do that."
"What Lusty here want to do is create the chimera and have it assemble all of the souls in Ishbal into the stone," Envy said bluntly. "The power Scar has with that damned arm of his may have been powered by the souls from the war, but they are still there, in that desert." Envy grinned sickeningly. "And all we need to do is scrounge them up with the ouroboros's power."
Sloth sighed. "I need more information before I agree to anything. What power, and how will this chimera of ours control it when it is not even the original one?"
"All ouroboros have the power of life and death. They are recreation, the very thing that keeps us alive in our never-ending life. Each ouroboros has some level of control over the dead, whether it be their spirits or soul, whatever it is that they are, and we will use that to gather the souls in Ishbal and create the incomplete stone.
Sloth eyed Lust carefully. "Incomplete?"
Lust nodded. "Our Master had plans there, but when it backfired and didn't create a full philosopher's stone, she gave up on it."
Lust's voice was cold and angry. It was the fact that her Master knew there was incomplete stone just sitting out there that could be claimed and turned complete, but as it was counted as a failure, it was worth nothing. Even the stone fragments that the sins ate to stay alive were worth more than that. While the stone fragments might have been important to the sins, they were trivial matters to the Master, and it was the Master's thoughts and morals that counted, not theirs.
Sloth's lip curled with disdain, feeling anger at her Master as well. With a sigh, she said with a soft voice, "My, what a wild goose chase this has all been, and for what?"
"For just a bunch of shit in the end," Envy laughed coldly, sharp teeth visible with his malicious smile. "All this damn running around for nothing."
"It seems that way," Sloth allowed. She turned back to Lust. "There must be something different about the way this chimera must be made, so and I suggest you tell me now before I lose my patience."
"The chimera must have been affected by all sins in some way or another," Lust replied. "That is no easy thing to do, as most who encounter us end up dead or, if they live, never see another homunculi again. I suppose we really are a rare breed," she said with a false sigh of sadness. Sloth waited for Lust to continue. "The ingredients consist of the human, of course, and an ouroboros."
"Obviously," Sloth said lowly. "But again, I ask, where will you get one?"
"All that's needed is a fragment, and a scale is more than enough," Lust replied, nodding at Envy. Sloth nodded in understanding. When Envy transformed into something, he truly was that being or creature. While he may not get the instincts or memories, that body was a perfect replicate. "And, most importantly, the alchemy seal and the blood from all seven sins," Lust finished.
Sloth was quiet for a moment. "What type of seal?" she asked carefully.
"It's here, actually," Lust replied, tapping the ground with her heel. "Underneath this church that only we can reach." She shook the pole at Sloth.
"And the blood?" Sloth asked.
"While we may not actually bleed blood, we do bleed bits of our stone fragments, and each one is different once it enters our body." Lust moved her eyes from Sloth to Wrath. "The alchemist must also be a homunculi, and would you know it, we have one right here."
Wrath looked up at Lust before glancing at Sloth. "Mama?" he said, almost as if asking for permission.
"Grow a damn backbone, you little brat," Envy snarled, sneering down at the glaring Wrath. "This is your chance to become human, just like you wanted so much, and you will be helping us even if you fight every inch of the way," Envy growled, standing over Wrath.
Wrath snarled at Envy, picking up some metal on the ground and transmuting it into his arm, turning it into a spike. With a savage roar, he lunged at Envy, repeatedly trying to strike. Envy laughed at the attempts, dodging each strike easily.
"Do you really think you have what it takes to hurt me?" Envy asked dangerously, backhanding Wrath.
Wrath yelped as he fell, holding a hand to his cheek and glaring up at Envy. "Nobody tells me what to do," he snarled lowly, gasping as Envy slammed his foot down on his neck and cutting off his circulation. The transmuted spike fell away into his hand once more as he clawed at the foot.
"You seem to be forgetting who helped you remember what you are," Envy stated casually, applying more pressure. Wrath choked on a gasp.
Gluttony laughed off to the side. "Can I eat him, Lust?" he asked longingly.
"No, Gluttony," Lust replied smoothly. "You may eat later. If all goes according to plan, you will have much to eat all over the continent." Saliva dripped down from Gluttony's chin as he thought about all the food he could eat.
"I… hate 'ou," Wrath gasped out, squirming under Envy's foot.
"I'm hurt," Envy sneered, removing his foot and picking Wrath up by his hair. "This is happening whether you like it or not, and you can either go with it with pain, or without." Envy pressed his face close to Wrath's. "You choose," he growled, tossing Wrath at Sloth.
The other sin caught the boy, holding him down. "That's enough, Wrath," she chided. Wrath threw her a hurt look before looking down angrily, ignoring Envy's laughter. Sloth turned to Lust. "So this ritual must be done her?" she asked carefully. "You do realize that we are nowhere near Ishabal. We are far into the west, and first must travel a good distance to Central, where then we must get through the military and into the restricted Ishabal."
"We have done this before," Lust said carelessly.
"Yes, on our own," Sloth said, a dangerous glint coming into her eyes.
Lust noticed the danger. "Yes, with our chimera, it will get troublesome. We will have to travel a good distance without being found out, by both the military and our Master, and we will need to tame our chimera."
"How do you know for sure that this chimera will even gain these powers?" Sloth asked.
"I don't," Lust answered truthfully. She gestured to the book in her hands. "But in here, it clearly stated that with the ouroboros genes mixing in with the human's alchemic bloodstream, along with the powers of the seven sins, his power will slowly grow."
"Alchemy cannot be performed by a beast with claws," Sloth noted.
"Yes, only human hands can," Lust said, smiling down at her hands in longing. "But then again, a homunculi shouldn't be able to use alchemy, and yet Wrath just performed a sample for us."
"What proof do you have that can tell me this will work?"
"I don't have any," Lust answered with a laugh. "I suppose it's just faith."
Envy scoffed at the word.
"Besides, even if it doesn't work, and the chimera dies or some unforeseen event happens, it won't really bother us. Again and again we will just come back, and while that is a relief to know we will continue to live, what sort of existence would we have if we didn't truly live it? A long life is worth nothing if you don't enjoy it, but a short life full of wonders is truly worth it."
Sloth was silent for a moment. "Were those your memories coming back?" she asked quietly. "Memories of what you wished for or told?"
Lust flinched back, hating herself for that moment of weakness. It was strange, but lately she had been having a lot of flashbacks of her life as a human. That young, naïve Ishbalan girl who was so in love…
"Very well," Sloth said at last, closing her eyes in thought. "I will do this, but as you know we still have parts to play with our Master."
"Of course, Sloth," Lust said. "We all have places to be, and it is a good thing we have so many of us to watch over our chimera as some of us need to leave."
"So we'll be shifting in turns to baby-sit," Sloth replied amused.
"Don't sound so put off," Envy replied, scratching his ear and glaring down at Wrath. "You baby-sit all the time." Wrath's head snapped up, and he growled warningly at Envy.
"I'd prefer if we all traveled together most of the time," Lust replied. "Not for familial reasons, of course, but simply because we all don't trust each other. Who's to say one of use won't run off and try something else with our chimera?" Sloth tapped her fingers in amusement as she watched Lust. The sin was already acting as if they had the chimera in their grasp already. "And then there's the thought of taming, training and making sure it doesn't run away," Lust continued. "With more of us, it will be close to impossible."
"Shouldn't it not be possible for a human to run away from just one homunculi?" Sloth asked carefully.
Lust smiled. "You forget that our person must be touched in someway by us all. You're forgetting that only two people in this age have done that."
Sloth frowned. "That means…"
"Yes," Envy interrupted with a sickly sweet voice. "It'll be your baby boys, Alphonse and Edward Elric. I assume you already know which one we'll be choosing."
"No!" Wrath screamed out. "He's mine! His body is mine!" He stood, ignoring the way everyone was looking at him. "He has a human body, and if he's a chimera I can never get my human body!"
"Shut up!" Envy roared, pushing Wrath back. "What do want to do, sew his limbs to your own?" Envy sneered. "Even then it won't be enough to make you human."
"I don't care!" Wrath screamed. "He's mine! Mine! Mine!"
"Wrath!" Sloth snapped, stopping the boy mid-rant. She took his chin carefully in her hands. "I want you to be strong for me, sweetie. If this truly works, and we get the stone, you can have whatever body you want. Do you understand?"
Wrath stared up at Sloth, eyes wide. "Mama," he muttered.
She let go of his chin, smiling down at him. Wrath smiled back hesitantly. "That's my boy."
Envy sighed in exasperation. "Good grief, are we just going to stand around all day, or finally get moving?" he demanded.
"The Elric brother's are in the city, aren't they?" Lust asked with narrowed eyes.
Envy waved it away. "Yea, yea. Had another false lead send them here on their vacation that the Flame Alchemist gives them whenever they aren't on duty. They're at some inn a few blocks away." Envy grinned. "Their target is this church, tonight."
"You certainly waited until the last minute to ask me, didn't you?" Sloth stated.
"Envy and the boys moved much faster than I thought, and you couldn't come until now," Lust replied. "Now, I'll need yours and Wrath's blood now."
"I demand to see this underground area first before I hand over my blood," Sloth said, standing.
"Very well," Lust said, having already known that would be the way things were. She eyed Sloth carefully. "This never leaves the five of us. The only one not apart of this is Pride, but you know how he is, working for him and all." Sloth's lips thinned. "And the Master, of course."
"Of course," Sloth answered as Lust pushed the pole into the wall in the very center of the church, right behind the alter. The stones shifted and moved away, revealing a narrow path way that lead underground.
"Shall we?" Lust asked, holding out her hand for Sloth to take. The other sin took the offered hand, and with that the five sins made their way underground.
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Wow, writing the sins personalities is hard! I know it isn't perfect and hope to get better with time. Any help, opinions or constructive critics is greatly appreciated!