This chapter contains some cursing and sexual content (not too extreme). So if you're not into that, you might want to skip some parts in this.

I rather really like this chapter. I hope you enjoy it too!

Just a fair warning, you may not like me for something that happens in chapter.

Thank you Cerisabeth, Kate, and Skyethestarlitangel for commenting on the last chapter! I appreciate it immensely!


The dim lamp stood glowing in the corner of the large room, the yellow light illuminating in the dark space like a halo. Ed sat at a writing table, skimming through worn textbooks that had long collected dust. Carefully turning the tattered pages of a tome, he studied alchemical symbols from different nations. The act was routine and redundant.

The transmutation circle Mustang had shown him earlier in the day had many familiar symbols, though, he couldn't name half of them. Having traveled to several nations bordering Amestris, he had grown accustomed to studying foreign symbols. But truth be told, the alchemy genius was stumped. All that was known was whoever was the owner of the array, they were highly skilled in foreign alchemy.

He heard a quiet exhale from across the dark room, and the rustling of sheets where Winry was stirring in her sleep. She found it a lot easier to sleep in the guest bedroom of Mustang's house than he did.

Ed didn't expect to stay at his former superiors residence, and truthfully the experience was a bit uncomfortable. It wasn't like staying at the Hughes' or even Ling's palace. Mustang's house was eerie and unwelcoming. While, it was fairly large and had fine architectural design, it was dark, dusty and didn't feel like a home. He also couldn't help but notice the lack of furniture in the house, several rooms were still empty, as if no one lived there. He supposed it was normal since Mustang lived alone, but he couldn't imagine living alone in such a large house.

He flinched when he heard a faint cry echoing in the empty corridor. The sounds were coming from Roy's lone room on the opposite side of the house. Ed scowled, he should have known Mustang was the kind of guy sleazy enough to fuck someone when he had company staying at his house. As much as he tried to ignore the the sounds, the whimpers and bellows only grew louder.

No.

He heard those noises before, it was the noise his mom made after Hohenheim left. He was having a nightmare. The realization shocked him, he never imagined Roy Mustang could sound so weak.

Winry raised her weary head from her place on the bed and rubbed her tired eyes, "What are you still doing up?" her voice was hoarse from being awoken. Ed hoped Mustang's bellowing would stop, not even he wanted anyone to know about this side of the man. Actually it was more than he even cared to know.

"I was just finishing up some research." He responded, trying to conceal his smirk when he noticed her disheveled hair. She always looked cute, truly a sight to behold. The former alchemist climbed into bed with his soon-to-be wife, pulling her close to him.

"It must be lonely live here." she uttered sadly.

"It must be." he responded, burying his face in her neck and breathing her in. "Winry, why are we getting married in Rush Valley?"

"I have a lot of clients who—"

"Bullshit. A lot of them could make the trip to Resembool."

She sighed, Edward knew her too well. "You just have so many bad memories there, I just thought you might like a change..."

Ed chuckled, more than anyone should laugh at such a response. His laughter only made the blonde woman become increasingly irritated.

"I don't see why that's so funny." She growled pulling away from him.

He sat up from the bed, admiring the faint glow from the moon peeking through the curtains. "I had a lot of bad memories, but also a lot of good ones. My mother, Al, you..." He kissed the tip of each of her fingers, a memory accompanying each kiss. "Besides your parents and my mother are there."

"Hohenheim too." She smiled.

"Yeah, right." he snorted. As much as he wouldn't admit it, he missed his old man too. "That's something Rush Valley doesn't have."

They heard the click of a door and the creaking of steps faintly reverberate.

"Maybe we should go to bed." Winry suggested, listening to the faint sounds of Mustang rummaging on the first floor. The two laid in silence, sorting through a sea of thoughts.

"Do you think he and Riza..."

"Ew. I don't want to know about that. That's a side of Mustang I never want imagine." Ed shuddered.

"That's not what I meant!" she shouted louder than she meant to. "Pervert!"

"Okay, what?"

"I mean do you think they will ever stop being so stupid and be together?"

The former alchemist groaned. "Probably not. They're married to Amestris. They wouldn't dare put their happiness before their goals."

Winry frowned. "Hopefully they come to their senses. They both deserve to be happy."

"Yep." Ed puckered his lips, "And so do you," he trailed kisses over Winry's bare shoulder. "Let's have our wedding in Resembool."

-i-

Soma poured scalding dark liquid into a ceramic mug. She wasn't sure how her general liked his coffee, but she didn't care. She was a soldier, not a servant. The dark-haired woman clumsily set the mug on his desk, the contents spilled over the walls of the ceramic.

"Thank you, Lieutenant." he murmured, not looking up from a file he was reading. He searched through several files for anything suspicious, he still had yet to hear anything else about the terrorists.

He tucked his face in his hands, he was so damn tired. The dark circles around his eyes were especially prominent today. He hardly slept the night before, his nightmares keeping him from sleep. "Fuck!" He shrieked, and slammed the mug on his desk. "Lieutenant, I nearly burned off my tongue!"

"I'm sorry, Major General." she responded, without a hint of remorse.

Roy groaned, he was growing impatient. "Just don't let it happen again."

She left his private office and returned to her desk, the other soldiers were engaged in a non-work related conversation. She hardly ever had interaction with her comrades. They often invited her out to bars or their poker nights, but she always politely declined. She had no intention on becoming friends with anyone.

"Maybe we can have poker night at your place, so Hawkeye can join in." Havoc suggested.

"Riza never wants to play poker though."

"Doesn't mean she has to play, we can just gather there." Fuery remarked.

"Yeah, she's probably bored out of her mind being stuck at home all day."

Soma stared at the other soldiers in the room, her foot tapping the ground. She had came up with her own interpretations about each individual. Jean Havoc was friendly, but he was a slacker and often pawned off his work to Fuery. Heymans Breda was intelligent, but he slacked off almost as much as Havoc did. Kain Fuery was timid and seemed to admire his fellow soldiers, he reminded her of a child, but she found him more tolerable than the other men. Rebecca Catalina, the only other woman in the room besides herself, she found the woman to be obnoxious and incompetent, giving a bad name to female soldiers.

And then there was Roy Mustang. Since she arrived he had been nothing but pleasant towards her, even when she made several errors, like the ones that were on purpose, such as the coffee incident. Unlike her past superior officers, he was kind and helpful. But he was the Flame Alchemist, the Hero of Ishval, she hated him. She had to hate him.

Soma re-entered Roy's office, paperwork in hand. She found her superior officer searching through files, still intently trying to find clues.

She dropped a stack of paperwork on his desk, the files on his desk were now strewn across the floor. "Dammit! Lieutenant Zhen, if you have an issue with me then tell me, instead of doing petty things to try to piss me off." He shouted. His patience had finally diminished.

The woman stepped beside him, "You killed my people..." she vehemently hissed, gripping the lapel of his uniform. Her tone was violent, yet entwined with sorrow.

His eyes widened and he hung his head, averting his inky black eyes to his feet, as if was a child being scolded. He hadn't expected this. The ghosts of his past had materialized outside of his nightmares to torment him once again. Another encounter with a person's life he ruined. Despite his own guilt and awareness of his past, he couldn't say the appropriate thing to justify his past. The words formed on his tongue but couldn't escape past his lips.

"But I…" Her face scrunched, red eyes glossy from tears, "but I can't hate you." She added, sheer sadness choking from her dry throat. "No matter how hard I try I can't hate you."

He looked at her with questioning eyes, taken aback by her confession. Here he was, a man who had destroyed the lives of countless people with the single snap of his fingers. Those left alive lived in agony as the ones they cherished had been unfairly murdered by the hands of state alchemists and even his own.

Despite all of this, she did not hate him instead, she admired him. Perhaps it was because he terribly regretted his actions and pathetically suffered from them. Or maybe it could have been because he strived to atone for his past.

"I was 17 when my mother and I came to Amestris to find my father," she started, "he came to visit my grandmother...she was very sick. We overheard about the war breaking out in Ishvala." The tears she once held were now rolling down her porcelain white cheeks, "We...we tried to warn father but by the time we came it was too late. My fath...my father was shot, sniped."

Roy frowned. He couldn't form any proper words to articulate. She had every reason to hate him.

"I joined the military to find out who killed my father. To find out who was in the Bashi district the day he was murdered. I...I think I might know who, but I'm can't be too sure yet."

"What will you do if you find who murdered him?"

"Avenge him."

In a poorly lit tunnel under Central, Roy had finally cornered the murderer of Maes Hughes. With the snap of his fingers, the flames engulfed Envy, the monster who killed his best friend. He kept the once blabbering homunculous from gloating to screaming in agony as the inferno burned the flesh off his body. Soon enough Envy was reduced to a ash, then to a tiny atrocious monster, no longer a threat. He finally had his chance to avenge his best friend.

He felt the barrel of a gun pressed against his skull, still hot from firing bullets. He didn't care that the only person he truly had left was pleading in a tone so foreign to him. If she stood in his way from killing the murderer of his best friend, she was his enemy too.

He was hardly convinced when he was scolded by Ed, and somewhat ashamed that he was berated by Scar. But it wasn't until his Lieutenant, threatened to take her own life did he come back to his senses.

How could he be so stupid? He hurt her again.

He couldn't lose her.

"Avenging him won't bring him back. He's gone for good."

"What do you know?" the woman cried out, tightening her grasp of his uniform.

"I've been there before. I know how it feels." he frowned.

She sobbed, "I can't let his murderer roam free, not when he can't anymore."

"You can't let vengeance consume you, because in the end it will only bring madness. Your father wouldn't want that." He wasn't sure if he was talking about her father or about Hughes, but the words spoken were truthful.

Although her confession had surprised him, he was more surprised when she pressed her body close to his. Her hot breath tickled his neck, making his skin rise.

She heard so many stories about Mustang and his reputation with women, yet she was surprised to see he was as nervous as a teenage boy. The grip of his uniform in her fists loosened, and her hands trailed over his chest. She bit back a smirk, to see the supposed "womanizer" become increasingly nervous by her touch, the sight pleased her. Her hot mouth covered his, and she was delighted when he returned the kiss. Formalities aside, he was still a man, and men had desires. If he wanted to have sex with her in his office she would comply, they were alone, no one had to know.

Her hands ran up and down his body, exploring the unfamiliar territory, until she became aware of his budding excitement. She stroked him through the fabric of his pants and pulled him closer. He picked her up onto his desk, his kisses came down harder. Mewls of pleasure escaped her throat.

As she shrugged out of her uniform coat, her arm lashed besides her knocking picture frames off his desk. The crash on the ground made him jump away and he stared intensely at the frames on the ground. One photo had been of him and his subordinates, another of him and a man jovially smiling with an arm draped across his shoulder, and the last was of him and his blonde aide at an award ceremony. His gaze was fixed longer on the last photo.

Soma had always heard about the devotion the woman had for him, but at that moment she realized he had the same for her.

"Do you love her?" She asked, the man quickly looked away from the photo, his gaze returning to her immediately.

"What?" The question caught him off guard.

"Do you love her?" She asked again, amused to see the man so nervous by the candid question.

"It's not…" he paused, trying to come up with something to say, "She's my subordinate. That is all."

She wasn't easily fooled. He turned his back to her as he straightened his uniform.

Picking up the frames from the ground she stared at the woman in the photos and looked up back at him. "Does she know?" She queried to his back, which was still turned towards her.

"Yes." He stated simply. His once tense posture had relaxed, as if the confession had been freeing.

Just a few moments ago she had been snaking her hands into his trousers and in a matter of seconds he had become further than any other man she had ever met. Her hunger for his touch intensified, but she refrained from running her hands over him again.

He was already in love with someone else.

As if he read her mind, he turned to her, "I'm sorry. That was completely unprofessional of me. If you would like to request a transfer, I understand. But I believe you're a very capable soldier and you are fit for my division." He commented.

"I apologize, Major General. I was the one who initiated… It won't happen again." She saluted, her face still flushed, "Thank you, however, I will decline the offer to transfer."

"As for everything that happened here—" he began, but she interrupted him.

She nervously played with a sleeve of her uniform. "It will never be spoken of, Major General." She muttered and walked out of the office. Tears welled up in her eyes, she felt so stupid.

Roy picked up the frame housing the photo that shrugged him out of his stupor, he felt incredibly guilty.

-ii-

The phone rang, everyone in the office had expected the fill-in aide or Mustang to answer, but the shrill sound continued to reverberate in the room.

Havoc sighed, "Goddammit. This isn't supposed to be my job." He picked up the receiver and pressed it against his ear. "Major Havoc speaking."

"Hello Major, This is Lieutenant Ortrov, the Fuhrers direct aide. Is the Major General available?"

"He is currently at lunch."

The man sighed. "This is urgent, Major. There has been an attack on Central. The section of the East Wing of headquarters was completely blown to smithereens. Several civilians have also been bombarded by the terrorists. The Fuhrer needs Major General Mustang and his team to report to Central immediately!"

Havoc gaped. "I'll let him know right away!"

"What was that about?" Breda asked once Havoc slammed the phone down.

"Central was attacked."

-iii-

He supposed he could use the spare key to let himself in or maybe he should knock for fair warning. He wasn't sure why he was at her door in the first place, Riza had known about the women he'd take home. The love bites barely concealed by his high collar were visible to her keen eyes. She never allowed her gaze to remain on the blemishes for long, but she knew they were there. However, that was after the war, when they would pretend they never spent most of their nights in each others arms, vulnerable and broken. Sex in Ishval was different, pathetic pity fucks could elude the guilt, even for a moment. But it wasn't until he was blind that he actually made love to Riza Hawkeye. He needed her, he would always need her. Now she was in a state where she needed him.

No other woman could replace the one who had permanently taken his heart and had always been at his side. He was sure of that. It was different now they were —whatever they were. They weren't together it shouldn't matter, yet, touching another woman made him feel wrong. It made him realize that he should never have to live without her being so close to him.
His. . . encounter with Lieutenant Zhen had made him realize he couldn't live the way he once did. He was no longer that kind of man anymore. He didn't need to shut off the lights, or find another woman to take Riza's place. Once the barriers had been broken down, they could never be the same again. He was foolish for thinking he could live without being so close to her again.

Just as he was about to turn around, he heard Hayate barking on the other side of the door. There was no use in turning back now.

"General." she called out from her place on the settee, surprised to see him.

"Sorry, I don't mean to impose." He shut the door behind him and invaded the living room.

"You're not imposing." She smiled sweetly.

He sat beside her, his gaze settling on the stack of completed documents neatly sorted on the table. His Captain was so dependable. It was something he admired about her greatly. Cautious of her injury, he impulsively wrapped his arms around her, and she was a bit dumbfounded by the arbitrary embrace.

"Is something wrong?" she queried, still confused by the sudden action.

Appropriate words couldn't stream from his brain, instead he continued to hold her, tongue-tied. He pulled away, his dark eyes met her honey colored eyes. He had seen many pretty women, but Riza was beautiful. No matter how many times he'd see her, she always took his breath away.

Her pink lips looked so inviting.

Roy leaned over and cupped her face with his hands. He pressed himself against her side, forcefully seizing her lips. The kiss was hardly romantic, his teeth clanked against hers, the feeling made him cringe. He was as nervous as he was the first time he kissed her, a young adult with the huge world still ahead of him.

One hand slid into her hair, tangling his fingers into her silky tresses. His soft kisses trickled down her neck, her eyes shutting tightly at the sinful pleasure. She had to pull away, they had an agreement, never again, she thought, as he nibbled her ear.

With one strong arm around her tiny waist, he pulled himself closer. "So...beautiful" he gravelly whispered, in between bites and kisses.

Never again, the words repeated in her mind. But she couldn't pull away, she didn't want to. Her good sense of judgement was betraying her quickly, like a moth to a flame, her body was letting it's sense of need take over. Her fingers twisted in his velvety black hair, one of the many features she loved about him. She missed being this close to him, his scent had always brought her back to her childhood, a time when she wasn't devoted to being a soldier.

His muscular tongue slipped past her soft lips, exploring the terrain he had long ago committed to his memory. Only moments ago his tongue was in another woman's mouth and yet that act had brought him back to the only woman he could ever love. A free hand diligently unbuttoned her shirt, exposing her soft pale breasts. Her bare chest heaved up and down, it was driving him mad. He needed more of her.

Never Again.

They never had to say how they felt about each other, their love and devotion was apparent in their actions. He untangled his fists from her hair, walking his fingers in between her thighs.

This was too much. She tore away from his sinfully delicious lips. "Roy." She stated firmly. Her hardened professional expression had returned.

Lustfully glazed dark eyes stared at the blonde in disappointment. Just earlier he almost slept with his fill-in Lieutenant, a woman who had every reason to hate him and despite that he almost had her. He could have anyone, it wasn't a game of cat and mouse, because the feline always got it's prey.

Riza was the only woman he had ever truly loved and yet the only woman he could never have. For once in his life he missed his pitiable vulnerability, his lack of vision, a time when he was able to have his woman.

They sat quietly beside one another, listening to the rhythm of each other's breathing. It was the most comforting sound in the world, the faint lullaby could put him to sleep.

"We can't." she spoke softly, sullenly looking at her hindering legs. Her injury wasn't the problem, it was that nettlesome agreement they had.

"I know."

"Then why are we..."

He exhaled a long breath he had been holding in.

"Never Again." she murmured the words that had been replaying in her mind.

"Never Again." he repeated. He didn't mean it.


Please take the time to review, if you're not busy :)

Curious question to all, do you guys like the length of these chapters or should I cut them down? It seems most people who read this have to visit again and I'm assuming its because the chapters are long.