~The updates to these chapters continue. If I continue at this rate I may get through all the chapters and post another soon. Keep an eye out :) When I finally post the new chapter I will let you guys know what's been going on and where I plan on taking this fic :)
*I don't really change the previous author's notes much, if I edit them at all. So if you have already gone through this once, just skip that.
AuThOr NoTe: Okay! So, it's time for me to be realistic with myself. As much as I love writing and giving others the chance to read the crazy ideas inside my head, I'm not going to be able to update as much as I like. I plan on finishing all my stories... the only problem is that I suck with finishing them. This is my senior year of highschool. I've gotten through the bumpy part and I don't think I will have to take any finals - thank goodness! - but I do have to prepare for college and prom and, well, life...
Here's what I plan on doing: I can actually work on these during my free time at school. :) Last year this website was blocked by the wifi offered in my school. This year it's not.
If anyone would like to collaborate with me on this story to try and help me sort through my ideas for this fic, I would greatly appreciate any help I can get. So perhaps a Beta-reader type person, yeah!
This would probably get the chapters out much faster and hopefully help organize my mind... it's a mess when it comes to my fics. They're like babies to me, but goodness they can be frustrating!
That's about it I think! PM if you would like to imput any ideas or just help me out :D
"Blah blah," regular speech.
Italicized sentences - thoughts
Severus once again gathered the attention back towards himself; his drawling voice, though soft, was easily recognized as impatient. "Let's move on to the next section. We haven't the leisure to waste the whole day pining over Elric's intelligence, or of his lack of stature."
The moment the comment was out, Eds temper was flaring. He glared at the one who dared call him short, and gave him a look that promised revenge. "Just for that, I'm going to take my sweet time on this next exam. Or, perhaps I'll write all my answers in code. For your own pleasure, of course."
The look between the two were that of pure loathing.
"Do that, Elric, and I will expel you before you are even enrolled." Severus and Edward smirked simultaneously. The two would have entirely too much fun torturing each other.
Several hours had passed before Severus Snape was finally convinced that the Elric boy had enough knowledge to pass as a transfer student. By the end, he was actually convinced that the blond could take his exit exams now and pass each with flying marks. In theory. Of course, he would never admit to that. It was much more enjoyable to torture the alchemist.
Much to Edwards disappointment, however, the actual written test took longer than he would have liked. It included much more advanced content than the previous test, so simply recalling information that he had read was going to be impossible. Scenario after scenario was thrown in, things he never imagined could happen in the mortal world, yet he still had to answer each question. Even worse, it had to be right. He had to resist the urge to crumple up the exam on more than several occasions. He was sure the Potions Master wouldn't take too kindly to the packet being thrown at his face.
"Please tell me that was the last one..." Edward grumbled as he put the quill down. Severus smirked as he took the packet from the boy, looking over his answers intently.
"Don't tell me you're already tired, Elric." Severus' eyes were filled with sarcasm. Edward was unamused, scoffing loudly in response. "The next part of your evaluation will be verbal, and then physical. We must be sure you can interact with the wizard community without drawing attention to yourself, and then we must be sure you can put up a decent fight."
The grin that spread across Edward's face was menacing, yet his eyes were filled with both excitement and humor. "You will be the one giving me that final evaluation, correct?"
Severus raised an eyebrow. The squirt actually wanted the chance to dual against him. The Potions Master nodded carefully, taking special care not to forget to keep an eye on this one.
And so the questions began.
It was then that the other Witches and Wizards joined into the torturing- er- testing, of Edward Elric. They started with simple questions. What was his name, his lineage, where did he transfer from? Who were his parents, was he a pure-blood, half-blood, or muggle born? How long was he staying, how did he feel about Voldemort, the war, Harry Potter?
It was Severus who asked the latter question, to which Edward had to take special care not to lace his words with a sarcastic edge. "Besides the fact that he is a sociopath murderer, I have no opinion of him yet. He's a stranger, and I don't take the words of others as my own."
Moody grunted in response. "So, you don't read the Daily Prophet, I take it?" Of course they knew he didn't, but the scenario was likely to come up.
"I've skimmed a few, but press tends to be bias and sorting through what's fact and opinion is annoying," Edward responded simply, shrugging. Moody barked out laughter, ending the short outburst with a grunt.
It continued from there to test out the alchemist's new life story. He was born in Germany, yet home schooled in the rural parts of England. He and his brother were unaware magic existed until Edward turned eleven, yet he had no desire to attend Hogwarts because of his younger brother.
"Explain this further, if you would," Arthur coaxed. This would be the first time any of the Order heard the boy's pieced together background. They had to be sure it was believable and without too many loop holes.
"My mother was very ill when my brother and I were young. Our father left to continue his research on the Philosopher's Stone, hoping to find a way to cure her. She passed away soon after, yet our father never found out and we didn't see him for years. Turns out he was more a Wizard than an Alchemist than our family was lead to believe." Edward paused here. "When I got the letter, I refused to leave my brother alone."
"Yet you still learned some advanced form of alchemy?" Moody questioned, skeptical of where the boy was taking his story. Edward grinned.
"A few years before I found out about magic, and after our mother passed away, my brother and I sought out a tutor. She was an old colleague of my dad and shared some of his research theories. He left a bunch of notes and books behind when he disappeared, branching from both science and magic. The magic went ignored, but we pursued the science. Our teacher had the same mindset. Using both we advanced our skills to their current level."
Severus tapped his fingers on the wooden table. He was thinking hard, trying to find a crack in his woven web of lies. The best alibi always contained some truth, however, and he was also paying close attention to any mention of his family and childhood. "How do you explain why few know of this powerful, yet completely muggle science?"
Edward frowned, he could tell what Severus was trying to do. And although it was necessary, it was still annoying. "When I was really little, my mother always told us stories of her great, great, great - well you get the idea... her grandfather, the alchemist Nicolas Flamel. I always thought she was kidding. Seems she wasn't. We learned later that he passed down his research through his youngest child who lacked in the magic department and preferred to study the natural sciences. He left it up to her to develop his theories and keep them safe until they could be published and shared with the world. Eventually, they were passed down to my mother for safe keeping, and she shared them with my father."
Tonks looked totally confused, "But Nicolas Flamel is already famous for creating the Philosophers stone, why would he branch off from magic to science after he already gained immortality?"
"He didn't." Edward folded his arms across his chest and propped his legs up on the table. This was getting fun. "It was during the creation of the Philosopher's Stone that he discovered the link between Alchemy and the natural sciences. It was by complete accident that he uncovered the hidden, yet completely vast, storage of energy that flowed beneath the Earth's surface. After that, you can imagine what happened. He was a curious man, after all. No reason why he shouldn't pursue this new art for the sake of further knowledge."
Across the table, Lupin smiled. "You remind me of friends I had during my own schooling at Hogwarts." Professor Snape scowled at the mention of this, but it went by unnoticed. "Two of which were quite good at weaving stories together at a moments notice." Edward beamed on the inside. At least someone appreciated his skills.
"Enough questions," Severus said suddenly, his mood clearly darkened. "You can figure out the other details when the time comes. You have proven your worth as a believable liar, congratulations. Take care not to abuse this particular talent, Mr. Elric. Your next evaluation will begin after we break for lunch." With that, he scooted quickly out of his chair and headed for the exit, his robes billowing out behind him. Edward cocked his head to the side, slightly confused by the sudden change in behavior.
"That was strange..." he remarked, rubbing the back of his head habitually. He looked to the others and they simply shrugged.
"Must have been the mention of James and Sirius," Lupin responded. Edward nodded, not really understanding his point but still recognizing the names from his briefing in Amestris. "The old bat never changes."
Shortly after the Wizards had their fill of hastily made sandwiches and tea, coffee once again for the alchemist, they met in the entry of the old apartment. Snape was still scowling, yet his initial rage seemed to be sated. The others only looked impatient. Edward had been instructed to bring his trunk downstairs, albeit his wand, which should be carried in his holster - an item that fit snugly around his left arm - from now on.
"Where are we going, exactly?" Edward asked, both excited to get out of this stuffy building and curious to see more of the new country he was in. It was Arthur who volunteered answers.
"As I mentioned before, we are going to my home to complete the rest of your evaluation. There isn't nearly enough free space here, and it will be much safer at the Burrow."
Who names their home 'the Burrow?' Edward thought, amused, wondering if he should be taking the middle aged man seriously or not. He nodded regardless and motioned to his trunk. "What should I do with this then?" He couldn't picture it being pushed through the floo network, and he dreaded the idea of apparition.
Tonks made her way up to Edward then, holding a very large, very odd looking shoe of some sort. It was thickly laced and smelled of something foul, causing the alchemist to cringe away from the bubble-gum haired witch. "What the hell is that?"
"It's a portkey," Tonks explained. Edward immediately recognized the term, yet dreaded what the witch was about to suggest. "It will take us to the Burrow all at the same time. Whenever we say ready, grab hold of your trunk and then the portkey and hold on tight."
Arthur glanced at the watch on his arm, quickly making a move to get a grip of the shoe-like object. "It's nearly time. Everyone, grab hold before it's too late. Blast the fact that time always seems to run through so quickly."
Startled by the sudden command, Edward fumbled with the handle of his trunk. He gripped it tightly with his right hand and threw his left towards the portkey, weaving his fingers through its laces for a better grip. A second later he felt his feet leave the safety of the floor and felt a gush of wind as the room began to spin. Something tugged him around his naval, reminding him eerily of the hands that came from the gate of Truth. He waited for the sensation to end... yet it seemed to last for an eternity. It took all his will power not to scream as memories of his greatest sin began to flood his mind. He swore he heard the mocking laugh of the one who brought him so much misery, the white ghost of Truth.
What the hell is going on?
He didn't notice when the spinning stopped. His eyes were clamped shut and darkness continued to envelope his senses. Even as he began to hear the voices of his party, all he could see were the tiny, clawed hands. The echo of Alphonse's voice was screaming, his body being unwillingly dragged through the gate. Edward couldn't move. His whole body was tense.
The wizards looked down at him worriedly. He did not react the way most did the first time one traveled via portkey. Dizziness and nausea were common, but Edward's reaction startled them all. His gaze was angled towards the ground, his golden bangs limply shielding his eyes from view. The white of his gloves were stained from his clenched grip of the grass and dirt beneath him.
"Elric," Moody growled, trying to shake the boy from his stupor. Edwards eyes snapped open, yet they were foggy and unseeing. "Severus, what the hell is going on?"
"Move aside," Snape demanded, drawing his wand from within the folds of his robe. He sank down on his knees until he was eye to eye with Edward and pointed his wand towards the boy. "Legilimens."
As soon as the spell was cast, Snape recoiled, yet he managed to keep the spell in tact. Edwards memories were being forced into his mind, some so terrible he wasn't sure what he was seeing. Death, pain, suffering... and at the base of it all was a sentient white being who merely smiled at him.
It had happened so fast, and with such force he hadn't been able to react. He was absorbed. And then, as quickly as he had been taken over, there was nothing left but a void of white. Severus tried to force the spell deeper, desperate to understand what was happening, but no luck. Some unknown force was blocking his magic, and as he heard what could only be soft laughter, he was forced to withdraw.
Once his vision had cleared and he had regained his composure, the first thing he heard was Edward's scream of rage.
"What did you do!" He demanded, his head throbbing. He had no idea what happened to him. Just after they used the port key something went wrong. He felt trapped, as if his body were torn between two different destinations. And within all the confusion, he caught a glimpse of the last thing he ever wanted to see again... Truth. And now, to make matters worse he opened his eyes to see Severus Snape pointing a wand to his face. Without thinking about the consequences, acting on pure rage and confusion, Edward clapped his hands together and transmuted the very tip of his automail. He knocked Snape to the ground and help the tip of his blade against the man's throat.
He was beyond furious. Yet through all the confusion, he was sure Snape had seen parts of his past, and that unnerved him. All the memories he relived, he knew Snape had witnessed them as well.
Everyone was instantly on guard, wands out and aimed at the two. It had happened so suddenly. One second Edward was stoic, and the next he was launching himself at the Professor with a blade that had ripped from beneath his glove.
"I did nothing, Elric." Snape's voice came out as a hurried snarl. "Get off of me!"
"You used Legilimency on me! You had no right!" The yelling grew more intense, each wizard was frozen and watching carefully. If this progressed much further, they would be forced to stun the alchemist into submission. "Those memories are private!"
"You were under some kind of trance, you insolent boy! I snapped you out of it before it could cause your mind permanent damage," Snape replied, calmer now, yet still angered. Whatever the outcome of today, he would have to figure out what to do with his wrongly obtained - yet obtained none the less - new knowledge of the boy.
"Bastard!" Edward shouted, letting the rest of his rage seep out. He transmuted his automail back to normal, careful not to tear his glove any more than it already was, and allowed Severus room to get up. "Never do that again." The Potions Master gave no response, momentarily intimidated by the intensity of Edward's glare.
"We will discuss this later," Snape replied, finally finding his voice. Despite the questions he wanted to ask, he knew from years of experience that now was not the time. Edward glared at the professor, daring him to say anything more on the matter, yet accepting that at this point he didn't have any other choice. He forced himself to store this event in the back of his mind, too much left to do and not enough time to argue about the importance of privacy and how he refused to ever apparate anywhere ever again.
He would also never show them just how shaken he felt. He wouldn't let them see anything more than a frustrated teen that just wanted to get this mission over with as soon as possible.
Edward was silent as he made his way towards his trunk, using his rage to fuel the effort needed to flip it right side up. He must have let go of it sometime before they landed. Glancing up, he noticed they were in a field. The grass around them grew in varied tufts, some of which reached well past the teen's knees. In the distance was a silhouette of a large, dangerously unbalanced building. Ed squinted his eyes, trying to make out more detail, but the sun refused his request.
Muttering darkly to himself, Edward began marching his way through the field, heading towards what he assumed to be the Burrow. He only went a few feet before Arthur stopped him. With a wave of his wand, the trunk lifted from Edward's hand and took off ahead of him. Ed cringed, but said nothing. He wasn't in the mood to argue over the simplicity of carrying his luggage himself, no magic required. Honestly, the last thing he wanted to do was interact with any of these magic wielding bastards.
"I've got that," Arthur said behind him, oblivious to Edward's silent objection. "We won't be meeting with the others until after the last evaluation. Rather not cause a commotion and all that."
"Of course," Edward barked, struggling to keep his temper under control. "Why didn't I see that coming?"
Moody took a step towards Edward, his face set in a scowl. "Calm down, boy! You will duel Severus Snape and then we will meet up with the others. I expect your fit to be over with by then." Sensing the tension, Lupin attempted to get between the two. The last thing he wanted was a quarrel so early in the day. Tonks looked on worriedly.
"My fit?" Edward's voice came out as a hiss. He pushed pass Lupin and Tonks to get closer to the old Auror. "That was no fit."
"I do not need to explain myself to you, old man!"
"That's enough!" Snape shouted, his voice inducing immediate silence. "Elric, we are here to continue your evaluation and that is all. Remus, set the arena." Edward scowled, his body radiating intensity.
"How are we doing this, then?" Edward asked. He crossed his arms in front of him, trying his hardest not to poke himself with the wand still tucked up his sleeve. "Are we testing my alchemy, or this almighty magic of yours?"
"Both," replied Snape. Only Edward could tell how hard the wizard was struggling to keep his voice steady. He recognized the shock he was trying to hide. Good, serves him right for seeing what was never meant for his mind. The alchemist forced his focus back on his current mentor. "First, we will test the general application of the spells one is expected to know by their sixth year. Then we will see how you do in a wizard duel. Afterwards, you will use alchemy, and we will see just how well it holds up."
"This will be marvelous," Edward said, sarcasm evident even though he was trying to hold himself in check. Snape looked towards him. His eyes shown with a certain kind of mischievousness, filled with dark humor.
"You haven't practiced a single spell, have you?"
"Not one." Ed, despite his sour mood, couldn't help but grin.
A smirk appeared on the Potions Master's face. "Marvelous, indeed."
Hi guys~! Long time so see, eh? Sorry that this has been so long between updates. I will say again that life has been some crazy. I've started college. WOW. I'm still not use to it, but at least all of the preparation anxiety is over!
Speaking of college, if anyone happens to be attending LSU, send me a PM.
And in response to what may have been a confusing end to a chapter, don't worry about the suddenness of it all. There will be explanations later on.
I'm starting the next chapter today, and If I have enough inspiration I may even be able to update later tonight or this week. Wish me luck :) Thank you all who have kept up with me so far :)
XXXXAdded NoteXXXX - This chapter was actually edited a good bit! Thank goodness, eh? Lol Hopefully it makes a bit more sense. I'm trying I promise.