DX :panting: I FINALLY got this chapter all written up. I'm sorry that it took so freakin' long, but IT'S FINALLY HERE!
Who here doesn't own FMA or Host Club? :all in vicinity, including Vampire Alchemist, rise: YO!
So, just some random notes here, first, I was asked by someone why Alphonse wasn't attending Ouran Academy as well as Ed. Well, in my story, this isn't all that long after Al got his body back, so not only is he learning how to walk again, but he's still pretty emaciated. It would raise questions and suspicions, so Al has to be home-schooled.
And secondly, I WILL NOT TOLERATE ANY FLAMES FROM ANYONE. I got one telling me off about the twins only pretending to be gay and calling me names. Well, I AM A FAN. AND THIS IS A FAN-FICTION. I can make them gay or straight if I wish.
Flamers, ye be warned.
Edward breathed a sigh of relief as he walked through the doors of Ouran Academy. There was no way today was going to be like yesterday. Yesterday, during that "Peter Pan" cosplay, almost every single girl in the entire school had fawned over him, calling him hellish names, like "cute" and "adorable" and "sweet." It took him immense will to keep his temper under control, but he did it. Whoop-dee-flippin'-do. And somehow, he'd miraculously gotten more requests; probably because of that damn costume. When he'd gotten home, Alphonse had promptly fallen to the ground and laughed himself silly, and as Ed found out later, it was all because there had been some remaining leaves in his hair and a spot of glitter on his nose. The case of giggles had lasted for several hours later when Ed had to explain their presence.
Today, however, he was going to be Host-Club-Free, because today he was actually starting classes. Besides, the club hadn't told him of any meetings today. True, he had escaped from that nightmare of a music room as fast as humanly possible, and true, it had been just as fast as Envy confronted with shampoo. (1) But still, there couldn't be any meeting today with classes happening. There were some that he could probably get away without as he was a child prodigy…but the phrase Host-Club-Free sounded like sweet music to his ears. So, it was a mixed blessing. Or so he thought.
"What the hell do you mean?" Ed yelled to the Narrator.
[What? I'm just foreshadowing! That's my job as Narrator!]
"Quit breaking the fourth wall!"
[Y'know, Ed, it's not really my fault this time; you're the one that started it. I was just doing my job.]
Ed glared, which I must admit was truly terrifying. Imagine the most horrifying thing you can think of; Ed could put 10x the intensity of that into one, truly horrifying glare.
[Alright, fine! Jeez, rebuilding! Like Bob the Builder, only not!]
"GET ON WITH IT!"
[ALRIGHT! You don't have to go Monty Python on me…]
"Oh my, what have we here?" A voice slithered out from the shadows. It sent a shiver through Ed's spine and made the hairs on the back of his neck stand up. When he turned around, the sight that greeted him was that of a cloaked young man holding up an creepy cat-like puppet.
"W-who are you?" It was then that Edward realized that all the other students, who had previously been in the hall, (and somehow oblivious to his screaming at a disembodied voice) had all the sudden disappeared into thin air. For some reason, this guy reminded him of a creepy cat, and he, Edward, was the unfortunate mouse that wasn't smart enough to flee with all the others.
"My name is Nekozawa, and this," he said, indicating to the puppet , "is Belzenef."
"Tell me, Mr. Transfer Student," Nekozawa was suddenly way too close for comfort, practically touching noses with Edward. Ed took several steps back, but Nekozawa somehow managed to stay right in his face.
"Do you believe in…black magic?"
"Did you hear that, Belzenef? We have a non-believer." A wicked grin slid across his face and the weirdo puppet tapped its puppet hands. "What's that? Why yes, dear Belzenef, we can quickly remedy that."
Just when Edward thought that the creep was gonna eat him, someone came up form behind and grabbed him beneath his arms. They lifted him up, then turned around and skittered away from Nekozawa, Ed twisted around as best he could to see his savior's face.
The taller boy set Edward down, the patted his head like he was a little kid. Edward growled under his breath, trying his best not to lash out. After all, Mori had just saved him from that vampire, who was an inch away from sucking his blood.
Ever since Al had gotten his body back, Edward no longer had to eat and sleep for the both of them, and so Ed had shot up in the fastest growth-spurt of his life. He now reached 5' 10", which meant that Granny couldn't call him a pipsqueak anymore and the short jokes had reduced considerably. After all, 5' 10" was just a few inches away from the 6' range, that was not small, thank you very much. But compared to Takeshi Morinozuka, he was once again considerably short.
Mori saw how Edward was fuming, and so he chuckled to himself.
"Class 2-A is right down the hall." He said, and then melted back into the flow of students. Edward stood there for a moment or two; that was the first time he'd ever heard Mori talk. The bell rang shortly after, so Edward turned around and found his homeroom class. He introduced himself to the teacher, who then pointed him to the only empty desk, which was wedged right between…
Kyoya Ootori and Tamaki Suoh. Goddammit.
"Well, we meet again, Edward." Kyoya commented as said boy glared daggers at him. To show his displeasure, he let held his text-book up a foot and a half above his desk and then let it drop with a deafening THUD! Kyoya only smirked. Tamaki opened his mouth – no doubt to spew some paragraph that was 85 percent pure nonsense – but the second bell rang, signifying the beginning of class. Quickly, Tamaki leaned over and whispered into Ed's ear,
"Club meeting today after school, Edward. Don't forget!"
Something about that boy was terribly familiar.
Tamaki couldn't his finger on it, but the moment Edward had first entered the third music room, something in Tamaki's mind began yelling at him to pay attention. Unfortunately, that voice yelled at him in Ancient Greek, so he pushed it to the back of his noggin and smothered it with a piano piece by Chopin. He had other things to worry about, and besides, he'd had bad experiences with Ancient Greek, all thanks to Nekozawa.
Still, through all the harmonies and melodies trying to drown it out, that nagging feeling still demanded to be heard, teasing his consciousness. Something in Tamaki's sub-conscious recognized Edward. And when one had the power of Kyoya Ootori on their side, it was safe to say that he had already read every file there was about Edward Elric.
He was going to have to talk with Mommy later on.
After classes that day, Ed stepped cautiously into the music room, prepared to deck any fairies or pirates, twins or drama-queens that threatened to suck him inside. But surprisingly, there was no Never Land or roses to greet him. Hell, not even the tables were set up.
The other Hosts were there, talking among themselves. The twins seemed to be plotting to themselves, while Honey and Haruhi talked…something about 'fancy tuna'?...while Mori stood by silently. So nothing out of the ordinary. But then Kyoya and Tamaki caught his eye.
Kyoya was sitting at the solitary table, typing away at his laptop, which really wasn't new. Tamaki, however, seemed puzzled about something, and there was an air of seriousness about him, which was something that Ed had never seen in the short time he'd known Tamaki Suoh. He juggled a soda can in one hand while he whispered something to Kyoya. Kyoya nodded his head, and said, "I'll look into it."
It was then that Honey noticed Edward's presence. "Edo-chan's here!" he said.
All the others looked up and immediately, Tamaki's demeanor changed back to normal.
"Ah, there you are, Edward!" he said. "Alright then, move out Hosts! Edward, you can leave your bag near the door."
"Aren't you coming, Kyoya-senpai?" Kaoru asked, looking back at the Host in question.
Without looking up from the screen, Kyoya replied, "It seems I have a previous engagement."
Kaoru shrugged and caught up to the others.
"So, what's going on?" Edward asked.
Tamaki smirked and held up the empty soda can.
"We're going to play 'Kick the Can'."
To this day, this was the most infuriating thing Kyoya had ever come across. Even more than the multiple times Tamaki had dragged him out of bed at an ungodly hour, just so they could participate in frivolous activities that were a waste of his time.
Almost every single file on Edward Elric was classified, no matter what he tried, he couldn't hack into them. Every trick he had up his sleeve was ineffective against these fire-walls. Kyoya's blood was beginning to boil and his mind was starting to concoct ideas about kidnapping Elric and interrogating him to get the information he wanted.
[Don't you think that's a bit extreme?]
Kyoya looked up in a rare moment of surprise. The music room was supposed to be vacant besides himself, and yet there, with short bright red hair, a green peasant-blouse, and dark blue capris, was a girl.
"Ah, the Narrator." He said, comprehension dawning. "Don't you think you're meddling a bit too much?"
[Probably.] She answered. [And I'm probably going to get a whole long line of flames for putting myself in the story, but hey; I'm just here to help the plot along.]
"Why not from your living room couch? You were doing that perfectly well from there before."
[I know, but I couldn't figure out any other way to move this particular scene along.]
She came to stand behind Kyoya, observing his computer screen.
[I can't tell you much about this…too much information, and I'll turn into a Mary-Sue. I can tell you that the answer to your problem is staring you right in the face.]
She pulled up Edward's school file:
2nd YEAR STUDENT
HEIGHT: 5' 10"
Kyoya knew this file. Every student at Ouran Academy had one; it was mandatory. This was the first file he'd pulled up. And it was also as helpful as Tamaki.
[I promise you, Kyoya. The answer lies with this file. This was filled out by the Fuhrer of Edward's country, so it's guaranteed that he's hidden some sort of cipher in there that'll help you hack into the classified files.]
"Why would there be a cipher hidden in something as insignificant as a school file?" Kyoya asked in an unimpressed tone.
[I dunno. Why would the Fuhrer himself fill this out when Edward could've done it himself? These people always hide things in plain sight. Or haven't you ever watched anime?]
"Alright, so then which cipher?" Kyoya turned back to his screen, studying it. "There are hundreds upon hundreds, and after all, you are the Narrator."
[Sorry, buddy. I can't tell you that. I'm already starting to feel the effects of the Mary-Sue virus, so it seems I must leave now.]
And with that, she disappeared just as quickly as she came.
Kyoya sighed a long-suffering sigh, then pushed his glasses up and started typing again.
Edward had been in a foul mood all day, and he was just about to reach his limit. He needed to get home. He had homework. He needed to check on his automail. He needed to eat.
Instead, he was still at school, unfed since lunch-time, slacking off on his homework, and about to play a children's game that he'd never heard of. The others, except Haruhi, referred to this game as a "commoner's game".
"Alright, Honey-senpai," Tamaki said as he placed the can in an open space of the enormous school-yard. "Your mission is to stick to Ed like glue. Help teach him the ropes of this game."
"Yes, sir!" Honey exclaimed, promptly latching onto Ed's arm. His eye twitched as he stared down at the limpet he'd suddenly picked up.
"So, just how the hell is this game played?"
"One person is declared 'it', in this case, Mori-senpai." Haruhi explained. "The tree over to the right is 'jail.' While Mori-senpai counts to 100, the rest of us run away and hide. If Mori-senpai finds you, then you try to run for it and kick the can before Mori-senpai reaches it. If he gets to it first, they he calls out your name and that you're 'in the can,' which means you have to go to jail. The only way you can get out is if someone else kicks the can before Mori-senpai. If all of us end up in jail, then Mori-senpai wins, and someone else becomes 'it.'"
"Everybody ready?" Tamaki called, then without waiting for an answer, he called out, "GO!"
The second Mori began counting, Honey yanked on Ed's arm, pulling him in a westward direction, giggling all the way. Eventually they found themselves up in a tree some 5 yards away from the beginning point, catching their breath.
"This is fun, isn't it Edo-chan?"
"I'd rather be studying." He grumbled.
"Oh, don't be such a spoil-sport." Honey said as he swung slightly on his branch. "You really need to loosen up, Edo-chan. You're always so grumpy and tense; you need to have some fun once in a while."
It was true, really. Edward hadn't really played games at all since Nina had died. He'd spent a good portion of his life searching for that elusive red stone, too busy to return his brother to normal that he'd pretty much forgotten how to have fun. He would never admit it out loud, but it was probably time for him to learn again. But he'd still rather be at home, studying.
"So, what happened to your limbs, Edo-chan?"
Edward came within an inch of his life, by almost falling out of the tree. He stared at the older boy incredulously.
"How the hell did you find out?"
Honey smiled innocently. "It's kind of odd for someone to wear gloves all the time like you do. I felt that your arm didn't feel right, and besides, you can't really disguise your footsteps."
Edward turned his face away, staying silent for a moment.
"I'd rather not talk about it, senpai." He finally answered.
"Tamaki's in the can!" they heard Mori call.
"I'm sorry, Edo-chan." Honey said quietly. "I didn't mean to pry; I was just curious."
"It's alright, Honey-senpai. No one can really help curiosity. I'd just appreciate it if you didn't tell the others."
"Your secret's safe with me."
"Hikaru and Kaoru are in the can!"
Silence reigned for a few more moments. Honey looked over at Edward, and realized with a start that he was brooding over something, almost as if he were depressed. Did he say something that offended Edo? Oh no! This wouldn't do!
"So, where were you born, Edo-chan?"
"Haruhi's in the can!"
"Where were you born?"
"…Resembool. It's a small country village."
"That sounds nice! Is it really pretty there?"
They talked more for a while, and Honey felt better when he saw Edward smile slightly, describing his home-town to him. Of course, Honey had to practically pry them out of him, but as he got him talking more, the more Edo opened up. Soon, he was talking about the rolling green fields as far as the eye could see, the way everyone knew everyone's names, and about his best friend, Winry Rockbell; a girl in love with all things mechanical.
"I found you."
They looked down just in time to see Mori bolting off for the can. With a silent curse, Ed dropped down to the ground, running after him, Honey hot on his heels. Ed tried to pass Mori, but older boy blocked him, swerving to run in front of him. Ed growled. He tried to pass Mori again, but he smirked and blocked him again.
Soon it was an all-out race, as if it was a race for survival. Sometimes Honey took the lead for a brief time, only for Mori to catch the lead again, and sometimes, Ed and Mori were neck-and-neck before the tallest once again took the lead. Dammit, Ed wasn't going to let him win!
Finally, the can came in sight, the other Hosts marveling at the intensity. Mori's face was passive, yet joyful at the same time, Honey was giggling like usual, but Edward's face indicated that shit was going to hit the fan if he didn't beat Mori.
Edward forced his legs to pump faster as they came closer and closer to the can. He could feel that something had snapped in his automail leg when he'd dropped from the tree, but he didn't care. He wasn't going to lose this dammit! He could hear his blood pumping in his ears and could feel the burn in his thighs.
The can came within reach, and with all his might, he pulled his leg back and kicked the can as hard as he could. It flew straight up in the air and everyone looked up, following its progress. For a while, it seemed like the can wouldn't come back down. Then suddenly, they heard a sound like a screaming jet coming closer and closer, until they heard a solid THUD! And Tamaki fell to the ground.
The can had two massive dents and was smoking. One of the dents had to have come from Ed's foot, while the other one was clearly caused by Tamaki's head, as there was a massive goose-egg forming on said Host's noggin.
There was dead silence.
Then the twins erupted into riotous laughter. And that laughter was contagious. Soon, everyone, with the exception of Tamaki, joined in.
"T-that was…brilliant!" Hikaru exclaimed, slapping Edward on the back.
"T-t-tha…ha ha ha…that was…the b-best g-game…ha ha…of kick the…c-can I've ever played!" Kaoru was practically choking on his laughter, tears starting to form in his eyes.
After 10 solid minutes, everyone finally noticed that Tamaki wasn't coming to. He was obviously still breathing, but he wasn't waking up.
"I think he's had a concussion." Haruhi said, taking a good look at his injury.
"Takeshi, could you take Tama-chan to the hospital wing?"
Mori nodded, scooping up the King and walking away. Ed peeked a glance at the clock tower.
"Shit!" he exclaimed. "I've gotta get home!" He started to run off in the direction of the school, but he stopped suddenly and turned back to face them.
"Thanks, guys." He said, smiling a small smile. "I haven't had that much fun in ages."
I APOLOGIZE FOR INSERTING MYSELF INTO THE STORY! Please, don't kill me! I didn't make myself that Mary-Sue-ish, did I?
Stay tuned for the next chapter! I can't promise an update in the near future, but I promise that I'm not gonna abandon this story.