AN by: indigo oceans

Well, it's Christmas Eve, my father is currently finishing up putting the Christmas lights on our tree, my brothers are playing a game on the computer, my mom is out shopping, Potions is playing with the English setter she's watching (in California, too, not here), and I am sitting at the computer writing this author's note. And fangirling deep in my heart of hearts over THE SHERLOCK HOLMES MOVIE THAT IS COMING OUT ON CHRISTMAS AND THAT I AM GOING TO SEE ON THE 26TH WITH MY HOMIES WOAHMYGOD YES.

Er. Right. I'm fangirling secretly, remember. Anyway. In lieu of flowers and chocolate - oh wait, that's Valentine's Day - this is our Christmas present to you, the next chapter in the saga known as Stupid Cupid and boy is it stupid. I'M JUST KIDDING. Why doesn't FFN have that strikethrough thing like Livejournal? It would make my life like, ten times more awesome. Ahaha it's not stupid, and Potions is once again writing with humor and unforgettable teenage boy-ness, so much so that I wonder whether she isn't just lying to me and photoshopping all her pictures. Just kidding. But I could never write an Ed that equals hers in realism. And with that said, Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays or Have a Lovely Secular Feast Day or whatever you celebrate, and we hope you enjoy this chapter

Chapter by: Potions For Foxes

Stupid Cupid

(quit hitting on me)

Chapter 22

I blinked quickly. Shit! Envy just said something. About there not being a school musical at our school.

"Al doesn't go to Ametris Academy. He's at Ametris Performing Arts and Sciences Academy. Last year the musical was on the rainforest and saving it. I took Lyra. That," I trailed off. The memory was horrifying. Sure the sets were amazing, but with the clear environmental bias and small children dressed up as various animals and tribes peoples, well that was a bit much. Add to that the fact that older children got the parts of streams and wind and stuff (which ended up getting polluted) and it was very touching and poignant. But the part when the "villain" came on and Lyra realized it looked just like her dad…

Yeah, that was the moment when I realized there was a reason that Al asked Lyra to come and managed to procure front row seats, and it wasn't because he was being nice either. Lyra ended up seating through the whole thing. Personally I think it was a miracle that we made it to prom after that incident.

"You do know what her dad does right?"

"I believe I heard something about it," Envy said. He looked down. Lyra hadn't been exactly—okay she was a total bitch (but smoking hot), and I guess she was pretty nasty to Envy, and everyone else… "Yeah, that'd be awkward."

It was beyond awkward. What happened was that the media had heard about it and when they found out that Mr. Prideaux's daughter was present, they leapt on her and starting asking her all sorts of questions. I never knew that you could make "No comment" sound like a death threat but Lyra managed it.

"Awkward didn't even begin to cover it," I said, shaking my head slightly. "Something to do with the fact that a man that bore a striking resemblance to her father was cast as the villain. Al will probably ask if you'll come. Feel free to tell him no, but he's—" I struggled for the right word. "Persistent. God my family is so embarrassing."

"Isn't everyone's?" Envy replied insouciantly. His nail polish caught the light as he twisted his hair around his finger. It was a supremely girly gesture. And even though I have long hair, I don't twirl it like some high school girl. Okay, I do chew on the end of my braid when I'm nervous or writing a paper. But that's different.

I'm just glad Al had never felt the need to grow his hair out. He'd probably curl it or some hideously ridiculous.

"No one is as embarrassing as Al," I muttered. I can see him now, prancing around the department stores, his hair done up like Sarah Palin's. He'd do it too. That's why I'm confident that no one is more mortifying that Al. "No one."

"Oh really?" Envy looked speculative, but I seriously doubted that he had more embarrassing relatives. Between my mom's hockey playing brothers, the Australian emu rancher with the transvestite common-law wife (husband?), my dad's crazy (drunk) German relatives, and Al, I think my family can handily win an Embarrassing Family Contest.

"This one camping trip Al wore blue mascara and had managed to 'accidentally' dye his hair this lime puke color. And then there was that other camping trip where he decided to wear frilly pink skirt and purple sandals," I said and shuddered. "It was so mortifying."

All Envy could say was: "Why?"

"I don't know. I think, I hope, Al was just protesting the camping trip. Mom, of course, has this theory that if you don't react to it, Al will realize that he can't rebel if people accept it. Mom doesn't seem to realize that other people find it really, really, really weird," I said. We got so many stares that vacation. Though this family from San Francisco told Mom that she had a 'beautiful daughter.' I think that was what made Al dress a little bit more appropriately. Which is extremely relative when applied to Al. I am soooooo glad he doesn't go to Ametris Academy. As much as I love him, I don't think he'd interact well with the dress code. "I'll be even Wrath isn't that bad."

"You'd be surprised," Envy said. "He's crazy. Like really crazy. He takes online classes instead of going to school and spends the rest of the time hacking government sites and watching weird Youtube videos."

"Al made Mom buy him a prom dress once," I countered. "Sure it was a Halloween costume, but still. Zombie prom queen would be cool for a girl, but Al…"

"Wrath once insisted on wearing a sequined fairy tutu when going to dinner with the family. It was pink."

"That was the year that Al planned the route," I said, looking at Envy. "I think he optimized it to include the most outrageously conservative households." My shirt has ridden up and my piercing is visible. Envy stared at it and even blushed a little!

"Wrath started dancing around the place with a sparkly wand. He was yelling profanities too, and it was a really fancy, reservation-only restaurant."

"See we don't go to those restaurants anymore," I said. I wasn't entirely sure that we were talking about the same tier of restaurants. Though apparently Uncle Jerry was doing pretty well in NHL so… "After that one time with the cockatoo, well…" And then there was that woman who started screaming about an illegitimate child and then that when Al—


It. Was. Al.

I rolled off the bed in shock. Fuck this was bad and then Mom was going to find out about the fight and then knowing her she'd assume that Envy and I were dating and start asking questions and that would just be awkward and embarrassing. And I know that Envy had agreed to this but the problem is I'm always … hands on with my girlfriend—not clingy and NOT touchy-feely.

"Shit! They're home!" I said, looking around the room. This was bad. This was bad. Mom was going to grill Envy if he said we weren't dating or just look really suspicious and drop awful hints. And she'd get so suspicious if I wasn't all over Envy, but if I did that, he'd… he'd… he'd probably kill me. "Okay, could you you… um this is embarrassing, just like let me put my arm around you or something, but just so my mom doesn't get suspicious when I introduce you as my boyfriend."

I was blushing. Shit!

"Not that I don't want to put my arms around you." As well as all over you. "Or hold your hand, because I do. It's just that this totally isn't a ploy to get you to let me touch you. It looks that way, but it isn't. I respect your wish to take things slowly. Fuck I'm bad at this."

Envy blinked, like he can't quite believe what he's hearing. I smiled hopefully.

"Er," he said finally. He didn't look entirely convinced. "Fine, but only for a little." SWEET! He said yes! I got to touch Envy! He didn't look as thrilled as I felt. In fact, he looked a little nervous.

"Shit! Is my hair messed up? Because if it's bad it's totally going to look like we were um, making out or something and." He trailed off and blushed. Oh? So that was what was on Envy's mind? This looked almost promising. "Is it okay?"

You really think I was going to pass up this opportunity?

"Here," I said. Envy's hair wasn't terribly messed up. Just a few strands out of place and he did look a little frazzled. I stood up on tiptoes to reach the top of Envy's head. I touched his sleek, smooth hair. It was so tempting to just run my fingers all the way through it, but that would make Envy suspect something. I settled for fingering the top gently before arranging the few mussed strands around his face. "I think that's good. How's mine?"

Maybe Envy would stroke my hair. Actually, my hair probably needed it more. I couldn't tell because I didn't have a mirror readily available, but I guessed it was pretty bad. Between the fight with Roy and Envy grabbing my braid, it probably looked like I'd been involved in a pretty rough make-out scene.

"Fine," Envy said barely glancing at my hair. Maybe it had fared better than I expected.

"Alright, come on then," I said. I grabbed Envy's hand (I was holding his hand!) and rushed downstairs, grinning. Before walking into the kitchen, I intertwined our fingers, glancing at the overlay of pale on tan. His longer, more delicate fingers laced with my larger ones, it was… it was really nice. I could almost pretend that we were really dating.

I gave his hand an encouraging squeeze before realizing that since we weren't dating Envy probably wouldn't find it comforting. I dropped his hand quickly and placed it on his shoulder instead. Mom had just brought in the last of the paper bags filled with (hopefully) food and Al's costume.

"Mom, this is my boyfriend, Envy," I said and smiled. I'd been dreaming of saying those words all of freshman year. Okay maybe not those exact same words, but close enough. And now they weren't even true… yet. I trailed my hand down Envy's back and placed it around his waist.

I had the strangest feeling that it would be suicide to venture lower. Still I have my hand around Envy Angeloff's waist. Thus my freshman dream has been attained. I didn't expect to look over and see Envy smiling charmingly. But he was. Did that mean that he actually was okay with this? That he liked it too?

"It's nice to meet you, Mrs. Elric," he said and held out his hand. Oh. I get it. He's just trying to make a good impression on my mom. That's a good thing too, it's just I thought he was smiling because … oh never mind.

"Oh please call me Trisha," Mom said shaking Envy's hand. She's charmed, instantly. Funny, the only other girlfriend—err, the only other Person Who I Was Dating to illicit that response was Winry (which almost doesn't count because she spent her entire childhood charming my mom). Not even Rose got that level of instant approval. She was a little too shy and retreating. And Lyra… was Lyra.

"Can I get you anything?" Mom offered, still smiling as she began to unpack the bags. YES! There was FOOD in them!

"No, thank you," Envy said smiling angelically. I shrugged. I doubted the question was directed at me anyways.

"Why don't you two sit down?" Mom suggested. Envy hesitated for moment and I led him over to the barstools where we sat earlier. I didn't let go of him. He fit so perfectly into my arms, despite the (slight) difference in height. It just felt right. I bit my lip and tried not to grin. Envy was looking vaguely murderous and this point and maybe I should just stick with handholding.

I slipped my hand off his waist and laced our fingers together. I didn't even care that Envy was glaring at me. I was holding his hand!

"ED!" Mom shouted suddenly, whirling around, roll of paper towels in hand. "What happened to your face?"

Shit! The fight! Fuck.

"Um, nothing, um," I said, trying to come up with something better than 'I got into a fight with Roy' or the actual true. "Just got into a littler, err altercation at school. Just one big misunderstanding, you know? Roy's dad took care of it." My mom liked Roy's dad, she still does. She considers him a upright type of guy—for a Mormon. Mom also likes his mom. I think they would've been great friends, had the whole Catholic Mormon divide/feud existed.

I glanced at Envy. Yeah, wasn't getting much help from that corner.

"Oh," Mom said and gave me a look. Definitely was going to hear about this later. However, Roy's dad had taken care of everything. I just hoped the school called to update Mom of that little development. The red message light was flashing 3 new messages, so perhaps they already did.

"Envy," my mom said in a much kinder tone. She smiled at him. "I don'y suppose Ed has remembered his manners and asked you to stay for dinner?"

Had I not been holding Envy's hand, I would've crossed my arms. I did too have manners. Winry doesn't count. She doesn't believe in me opening the door for her and chair pulling and stuff. But instead of calling Winry on it, Mom just accuses me of having bad manners. See the unfairness here?

"Surprisingly, he has," Envy said with a small smile. Oh come on. That was beyond unfair. Though, I guess the plus side is that I don't have to ask Mom if Envy can stay.

"Mom," I said because even if we're just faking it (for now), it's still uncomfortable for Mom to have a conversation with my 'boyfriend,' especially about me, especially when I'm still in the room. Mom turned around and pulled more things out of the bags. She set the chicken wire, paper mache, and some odd purple fabric on the counter. Several bags of suction cups join them, along with an assortment of purple paint.

What the hell is Al going to be anyway?

"She loves you," I whispered in Envy's ear. I'm about to say more, that Envy's doing wonderfully, that I'm sorry I can't let go of him just yet because I want this so damn much, that he's the most beautiful person I've ever met, and just anything to keep talking to him.


Talk about a buzz kill.

I jumped and cringe, bracing for one of Al's flying squirrel-esque hugs. Al skidded to a stop and stared. Right. I was holding Envy's hand and Al didn't know him.

"Wait," Al said, giving our hands a searching look before staring at Envy. He squinted. "Who's your girlfriend?"

Envy tensed. Fuck. He hated being mistaken for a girl and doesn't react well when that happens.


"Envy's my BOYfriend, stupid," I said, glowering at Al. Seriously, he had to pick the worst thing to say to Envy.

"Oh really?" Al said giving me an appraising look. "Is he now?"

"Not really," Envy muttered looking at me. He glanced away quickly. What the fuck did I have to do to get him to like me?

"Yes, he is," I said, giving Al a look. I turned away from him. This was going to turn into a pointless and really stupid argument if we kept it up. I took a deep breath and reminded myself not to clench my hands. I was holding Envy's and I didn't want to hurt him. "So, Mom, what's with the chicken wire and stuff?"

"It's for my costume," Al said proudly. He grinned and sat down next to me. Good. After that girlfriend comment I doubted that Envy would've want to sit next to Al.

"What are you going to be?" I asked warily. I didn't know what sort of costume could involve suction cups and chicken wire. Perhaps Al was going to be the trash and stuff in the play.

"I'm going to be a purple, dancing, sparkly octopus!" Al said gleefully. I felt my stomach drop. This was… this was so Al. Of course, he would do something like that. Personally, I don't think you could get any more gay than that.

"What's your name?" Envy asked, suddenly interested. "In the musical, I mean."

"Uh," Al said. Al, apparently, hadn't thought of that one. "I don't think I really have a name."

"Might I suggest Vanessa?"

Oh, now who's encouraging creepy behavior in small children?

I pretended that Envy just hadn't suggest my brother be a girl-octopus, or that Al was actually considering it, and wrapped my arm around Envy's waist. He's … almost delicate but I know if I ever tell him something like that he'll bite my head off. I smiled.

"Envy," my mom said suddenly. "You're being too polite. Most of Ed's girlfriends elbow him away when he gets clingy like that."

There is nothing more embarrassing than when your mother says things like that to the person you're dating, or in this case, want to date.

"Oh really?" Envy said, giving me a look. Fuck, he had definitely just realized that we didn't need to be this touchy feely to fool my mom. Cover was blown. He shoved me over him. Guess he didn't secretly want to touch me.

"MOM!" I moaned in exasperation. Did she really have to ruin it like that? I grabbed Envy's hand again. Mom ignored me in favor of organizing the materials on the counter.

"At the very least, let me hold your hand," I hissed, close to Envy's ear. I clinked my piercing against my teeth. Might as well pull out all stops. "Please?" and that came out a whisper.

"Why?" Envy said, but he kept his voice down. I leaned in closer.

"Because I like you," I said simply. There really wasn't a better explanation. I smiled. Envy looked at me, wide-eyed and wary, but he was blushing and he just looked so damn cute that I— "So Mom, what's for dinner."

"I think I'm going to do spaghetti tonight," Mom said. I grinned. She makes the best spaghetti in the entire universe. "Or would you like something else, Envy?" I glared at him, daring him to protest. Instead, he actually smiled.

"Oh no," he said, still smiling. "I love spaghetti."

I filed that useful bit of information away and wondered if it applied to all Italian food or just spaghetti.

"Okay, well, why don't you two run along," Mom said, smiling. She probably wanted to work on Al's costume, something that I didn't want to watch. I mean, I guess I don't have much room to talk about stuff being gay (particularly as I'm holding Envy's hand), but … yeah the purple glitter was too gay. "Ed, you keep your door open, you hear! Al, don't you leave, I'll help you start on your costume in a minute."

Brilliant. I smiled as I led Envy out of the kitchen. I dropped his hand as soon as possible. He hadn't seen happy about the touching and then when Mom had blown my cover like that, well it was better to play it safe.

"Hey, thanks for putting up with that," I said as we walked up the stairs. Envy snorted derisively.

"You expected me to slap you in front of your mother or something?" he asked. Yes. Yes I did expect that. Only it's not polite to say things like that and it probably would make him slap me if I said it.

"No, but you're not slapping me now," I said. Which was also surprising. I mean, I thought that as soon as we got out of earshot he'd—maybe I do have a chance after all. "And thanks for not killing Al. Though you'll have to admit that this is a pretty good reason for Wrath to come along."

"Trust me, it'll be equally bad at home if he figures out where you live. Actually, once he gets your last name, I can pretty much guarantee an invasion of privacy."

"Eh, one more weirdo won't make much of a difference," I said. Between Al's inherent bizarreness, Dad's chem students, Winry (and the feminist pamphlets that generally followed), Ling (who liked stapling posters in odd places), Russell, and whatever Al dragged in off the street, there was no normal at my house. Aside from my mom, but she tends to write the shopping lists in Latin… Wrath would practically fit in here. "And he'll be following Al around, not me." I paused. "They'd probably get along great if Al wasn't convinced that Wrath was stealing his best friend or something equally ridiculous."

"Ah, yes, ridiculous," Envy said. He looked guilty or worried. I shrugged and walked into my room. Envy sat on the bed and I hovered awkwardly. Envy fidgeted before:

"Your mom seems nice."

There wasn't much I could say to that. I sat down on the bed, opposite him and leaned back. So what if the shirt rode up a bit, Envy was the one who picked it.

"Yeah," I said. "What's your family like?"

It's a valid question. Envy didn't volunteer much information about them freshman year. I knew Sloth was his half-sister and Wrath was related to him somehow and he mentioned something about Pride or another sin while he was hissing at Roy, but other than that I'm clueless.

Envy just shrugged. "Strange."


Well there goes that conversation.

"My dad owns a high security company, or something," Envy volunteered quickly. "His wife is, um, a housewife?" His wife? Wouldn't that make her Envy's mom? That doesn't make sense, unless Envy's family is part of a hardcore Mormon group. I seriously doubt it. "My father's brother, Greed, lives with us too, when he's not traveling. Wrath's, uh, Wrath is supposedly his son." They didn't know for sure?! "And then Lust, my aunt, stays at out house when she's in town too, with her creepy, um, follower, Gluttony. I'm not quite sure how he's related. And you know Wrath and Sloth."

"Oh wow," I said, trying to sort all the maybe relations out. I give up. It's like my dad's family reunions. Eventually you stop worrying about how the drunk German man is related to you and start worrying about how to dodge those bone crushing hugs. "That sounds like my dad's side of the family."

"Really?" Envy asked. He looked surprised. "Interesting."

"Yeah," I said. I fiddled with my navel piercing (it sounds less girly than 'belly button piercing'). "They're all these crazy-smart German people. My great-aunt's convinced that we're related to some German prince or something. Of course, she only gets on that topic when she's really drunk."

I looked at Envy. He nodded vaguely.

"Yeah, she's really quite hilarious," I said and smiled at Envy. He wasn't saying anything, just staring at me with—oh. That. Well, this was going to be interesting.

Ow! Fuck! He slapped me.

"OW!" I yelped, rubbing my face. "What was that for?"

Envy gave me a look before turning his back to me with a huff of breath. His shoulders looked tense and his whole body seemed to be radiating unhappiness and tension. Good move, Ed.

"Look, if you want me to cover up, just say something." You don't have to hit me. "Look, I'm sorry."

He didn't move. At all. He's ignoring me.

I tugged my shirt down. Okay, so the constant piercing thing probably wasn't the best ideas. I guess, no, I know he didn't like that. It was… really stupid. I just wanted him to—well, it wasn't like he was paying attention to me now.

"Look, Envy, better?"

Still nothing.

"Envy," I said and moved closer. I wanted to place my hands on his shoulders, but I don't think that's a good idea. "Envy, please? Come on, don't do this." I ran my fingers through my hair. "Please, just look at me." I sat down next to him. "Please?"

Suddenly he shoved me away laughing. "S-sorry," he managed to get out between peals of laughter. "You were—it was too pathetic!"

Oh, so that's how it is?

I tackled Envy and pinned him easily. He didn't put up too much of a struggle and as I stared down at him, I realize this. I'm in love. I don't just like Envy. It's not just that he's the Dream Girl who happens to be a boy (that looks like a girl), not it's not that. It's him. I want him. And maybe it's not love but it's warm and it's the afternoon and it's sappy songs that I want to sing and it's staying like this forever, and I don't know if that's love, but whatever it is, it's happening Envy and me and I want it.

Envy … he just had this look on his face, like for a split second, and it's gone before I knew what it was. He laughed and shoved me off as he sat up.

I just smiled and rested my arm around his neck. I can get away with this, right? This is a completely manly thing to do. It could be purely platonic. It isn't, but it could be. Right? I grinned and leaned into tell Envy that we should go out to lunch tomorrow, just go somewhere.

"Envy, do you want to…" He leaned in closer and he was looking at me in this way. It was just super intense and I tried to continue: "Go to lunch with…" He kept moving closer and I couldn't focus, couldn't think, not with him this close. "G-go lunch… with me …you?"

And he kept leaning forward and I kept trying to string words together, like my life depended on it and I was blushing and turning bright red and…

"L-lunch go you? Me with go lunch? You?"

And his eyes were closed and I don't think he heard a word I said and I couldn't think. He wasn't going to, no fucking way. I couldn't move it was… this couldn't be happening. His face was moving closer and it was pale and, and—his lips brushed mine—

I closed my eyes and leaned into it, praying that this wasn't a trick of my over-active imagination, that Al wasn't going to wake me up, that Envy wasn't going to pull away—

He deepened the kiss. My eyes widened and I slowly opened my mouth. It was amazing. It was unreal. It was like floating and wet and different than Lyra, Rose, and Winry and Ling.

It was gentle and slow and careful, but it was beautiful. It was like coming home, so familiar and right, but new and anticipated and brilliant. I can't taste him, but it's wet and slippery and sexy and I can smell him, his shampoo or something and it's the clean, warm scent of clothes fresh from the dryer, and summer, and sun, and cool like creek water on hot days and…

Then it hit me.


And then, right when I got used to it, he pulled away. I leaned forward before I caught myself, what? Wait, what but no, it was kissing and now. I blinked. That was fucking amazing. He I kiiiiiss and wow. Yeah, pretty much just… wow. I touched my lips, I swore they were tingling. He kissed me. Envy kissed me. He really kissed me. And it's funny that I still felt like I was floating even though he'd stopped and pulled away from the—our—kiss. KISS. He KISSED me. I stared at him, he's beautiful he really—he kissed me. He doesn't look too—he KISSED me—happy though, more worriedly like—KISSED ME!—something's wrong.

"S-sorry," he said finally. His eyes are glued to his hands in his lap. Why is he apologizing? I smiled and tucked his hair behind his ear. He's so utterly adorable. I gently touched his chin and tilted his face up so I could look into his eyes. I can touch him, right? I mean, he kissed me.

"Hey," I said softly, still smiling. "You don't have to apologize." I looked into his eyes and like that I was gone. He's just so perfect and I've wanted this, wanted him, for a long time and he's finally mine or I'm his and it's perfect and it's beautiful and I'm happy.

Envy looked away and apologized for something, probably his earlier apology. It's cute. He's cute. He kissed me! I ran my fingers through his hair. I can do this, right? We can touch now that he KISSED me.

"Envy," I said, looking at him again. He's so heartbreakingly gorgeous and just amazing. His porcelain pale skin is flawless, his eyes—just his eyes, and his hair, I love his hair and I don't ever want to stop stroking it "I—I really liked it."

And I'd like to do it again, only this time longer. Or maybe we could cuddle.

"I, um, I…" Envy said and blushed. I smiled and leaned forward to—


Dammit Al.

"Guess we'd better go," I said, taking Envy's hand, this time it's real. I grinned. It's real. It's finally real! "Hey, Mom thinks we're dating." Just in case Envy forgot and thought I was trying to take things too quickly. I pulled him close to me and kissed his cheek before walking downstairs.

Together, we walked into the kitchen. Mom smiled when she saw us. I dropped Envy's hand gently. No need to make things awkward.

"Help yourself," Mom said, looking at Envy. I smiled and slipped my hand back into his, only to tow him over to the food. Really, that was the only … okay so what if I just like touching him. He kissed me.

"AL! The paint will wear off! Come out of the bathroom!"

I eyed the bathroom warily. God dammit Al! This was going to be so embarrassing. I didn't even want to know what Al was covered in this time. Though, I guess Envy wasn't going to be taken completely unawares… not like what happened the first time Lyra met Al…

I piled spaghetti onto my plate, before ladling a generous helping of sauce over the noodles. Envy was over by the salad and he moved over when I joined him. I glanced at Envy's plate. There wasn't much food on it, especially not compared to mine.

"Hey, I thought you liked spaghetti," I said. Envy just looked away. Fuck. What did I do this time? I popped a croton from my salad into my mouth just as Al walked out of the bathroom. I laughed and choked on the oversized breadcrumb.

Al… Al is … oh fucking God this is hilarious. Al is, predictably, covered in purple paint. It's smudged everywhere. He has glitter in his hair and it looks like he either ate a bunch of blueberries or applied purple lipstick without a mirror. There are sequins, sequins, glued to his eyebrows. His nails are vibrant lavender and his hair has purple streaks in it.

"Al, you, glitter!" I managed to get out between peels of laughter. "Oh God! Glitter hair!" I turned to Mom, still laughing. Even Envy was laughing, discreetly as if he wasn't sure if it was allowed. "Mom, take a picture or something!"

Mom hid her smile behind her hand. "Don't worry Al," she said sweetly. "I think most of it will wash off in the shower." I grinned and sat down at the table. Envy followed me quickly.

"Hey, Dad," I said.

Dad looked up. He'd just swallowed something, probably aspirin. He gets amazingly bad migraines all the time (which he passed on to me, but not Al. Fuck you, genetics). Still, he looked relieved that his normal child was talking to him. Time to ruin that.

"This is Envy, my boyfriend," I said, grinning at Envy. I reached under the table and grabbed his hand. "Envy this is my dad." The slightly pained looked returned to Dad's eyes. Score.

Envy grinned at Dad and said: "Nice to meet you, Mr. Elric."

Dad nodded in response.

He doesn't speak much when he gets migraines. Me, I just moan and curl up in the fetal position.

"Why are none of my children normal?" Dad asked, finally. I glared at him. That wasn't necessary.

"Hey! Both Envy and I are glitter-free!" I protested. Dad ignored that outburst and poked at his food. We never ate until grace was said.

"Actually Ed," Envy said, looking at me. I blinked. "I think there's some on your nose." He reached up to touch my nose and my eyes crossed. He pinched it.

"You get it off?" I asked, grinning at him. This was so awesome. Envy was so awesome. "I wouldn't want to be covered in glitter or anything."

"Mom!" Al, ruiner of fun and flirting, said loudly. "Ed's being disgustingly cute. Make him stop!"

"Please." Envy said, smiling at Mom. Oh? Think you're not a part of this. Well—

"Oh no!" Al said, echoing my sentiments. "You're part of this too!"

"Let them be," Mom said and actually winked at Envy. That was … odd. Still, we had her blessing and as long as she never found half the things that Ling or Russell hid in the house… Envy actually grinned back at Mom. That was good. At least dinner wasn't going to be too awkward.

Mom clapped her hands together. "Okay, time to say Grace." I sighed. Al rolled his eyes. Dad just looked like he was suffering. Though that really could be the headache. "Bless us, O Lord and these, thy gifts, which we are about to receive from They bounty through Christ our Lord, Amen."