Author – cornerofmadness
Disclaimer – all rights belong to Ms Arakawa. No profit made, just having fun.
Rating – PG-13 (with hints of sexual situations)
Pairing – mostly gen-fic, Ed pov but implied Roy/Riza
Time Line/Spoilers – consider it spoilery up to the very last chapter, certainly contains spoilers for Roy's back story. Future fic
Summary – Someone has stolen from Edward
Author's Note – I keep finding great pictures at challenge #7 at picfor1000. This time I used a picture of maple syrup. Thanks to SJ Smith for the beta (and it was her picture I snagged for this)
Al slowly walked through the hallway, the carpeting eating up the sounds his cane made. He only needed to take a two second glance into the kitchen of the house he and his brother had been put up at to realize his dreams of a quiet breakfast were shattered. Ed dug in the cabinet, cans and bottles pushed everywhere.
Flopping in a chair, Al waited until Ed worked himself into a lather before asking, "What's wrong?"
"I bought maple syrup for a treat since you said you wanted it and it's gone!" Ed growled.
"Maybe someone borrowed it," Al said. "Half of Mr. Mustang's men are quartered here, too, not to mention those girls who work in the bar next door."
"Why would it leave the kitchen? I'll break their fingers." Edward snarled like an angry dog.
"It's okay, Brother. I'm not in the mood for a heavy breakfast. We'll just ask who took it and I can have pancakes tomorrow."
Ed poked Al's too-prominent collarbone. "You need something that sticks to you."
"Eggs and bacon," Al said before Ed could work himself up more. "Is Winry awake?"
Ed rolled his shoulders. "She was up late last night learning how to mix drinks with those …women of Mustang's. Why would she need to know that?"
Al rolled his eyes. Sometimes Ed was dense. He got up, limping over to the icebox since breakfast wasn't going to be made at this rate. Ed got the idea and started fixing it. "Brother, this house…do you get the idea that it wasn't always…um…a home?"
Ed shrugged, breaking eggs. "A rich home. How many bedrooms does a place need?"
Al sighed. "I think maybe it was a brothel. Didn't the colonel say someone called Madame Christmas is letting us use it?"
Ed snorted. "What do you know about brothels?"
"Probably more than you since I spent countless nights wandering the streets when you were sleeping and only thought I was inside with you," Al retorted as Ed started frying the eggs.
The disparaging snort sounded again. "I guess that Madame did seem a little seedy but Riza wouldn't let the bastard put us in a brothel."
"I don't think it is any more. But it's something. Not a house," Al said definitively.
"Morning," Winry said, dragging into the kitchen, trying to stifle a yawn.
"Winry, have you seen the syrup I bought for Al?" Ed whirled the wooden spoon in the cast iron skillet.
"Planning on putting it over eggs?" She cocked up an eyebrow.
"These were supposed to be pancakes but my syrup walked off."
"He's obsessed," Al whispered to Winry as Ed slid eggs onto the plate.
"Haven't seen it." Winry sat next to Al after pouring herself a cup of coffee from the impressively sized pot on the stove. "Any plans for the day?"
Ed served Al his breakfast. "The bastard doesn't want us to get too far away from here yet. Al shouldn't be wandering around anyhow."
"I'm never going to get better if I just sit around all day," Al protested. "I'll do what I want."
"You'll have a big place to wander around in soon," a raspy feminine voice said and they all glanced toward the door. Madame Christmas filled it, watching them all with calculating eyes that made Ed somehow nervous. "Mustang said the Armstrongs want Alphonse to recuperate there where it's comfortable and safe so they're inviting you there. I believe they said something about sending someone after Dr. Rockbell."
"Gotta be Strongarm's idea," Ed said. "Has to be better than…" He flushed as her eyes narrowed. "I'll be out of the bastard's view for a while. Always better."
"It'll be safer for you there. It will get more dangerous here before it gets better," Christmas said, holding out an envelope. "Speaking of which, this came for you, Major Elric, with the caveat you need to share it with Mustang." She jerked a thumb toward the ceiling. "He's being a slug today."
"Always." Grumbling, Ed grabbed the letter, slithered past her and headed for the stairs. He could still feel her eyes. He didn't bother with a warning knock, flinging open Mustang's door. He assumed the hump of blankets in the middle of the bed was the bastard but it was what was on the night stand that got Ed's attention. "Why the hell is my syrup in your room?"
Roy's head poked out from under the covers, hair hanging in his eyes. "Good morning to you, too, Edward."
"Why did you steal my syrup? It was expensive."
"I'll pay you if you stop screaming." Roy covered his face. "And buy me more."
"Die." Ed considered the bottle. "Why is it in your bedroom?"
The covers flipped back and mischievous eyes gleamed. "Think for a moment, Fullmetal. Pancakes aren't the only thing you can lick it off of."
"Huh?" Ed's eyes widened as he went as red as his favorite jacket. "Hell! You used my syrup for that? With who? That madame?"
Sitting up, Roy rubbed his face. "Don't be perverse."
"You are perverse."
"This is an important secret." Roy's expression startled Ed who nodded. "Christmas is my mother."
Ed's eyes bugged. "You have a mother?"
"I didn't fall from the sky."
"I was thinking more of the ass end of something." Ed tossed him the letter. "For us."
Roy snorted, reading. "Olivia needs us to go to Dublith and sweet talk that teacher of yours."
"I saw. Good luck. I'll go with you to watch you sweet talk Master Izumi...and laugh when she throws you across a building." Ed scowled. "Your mom? Really?"
"Foster mom. I was orphaned younger than you were… though I suppose technically you're not an orphan." Roy shrugged. "The girls here are my sisters."
"Oh." Ed scowled. "Syrup… seriously, who uses that for sex?
"What poor woman agreed to it?"
"Who do you think?" Roy rolled his eyes.
"I'm telling Riza you said that."