Disclaimer: No.

Uni's back and to celebrate, (read cry my hatred to the heavens) I come bearing angst. It is...somewhat chaotic. Like Pan's Labyrinth, I was trying for dreamlike and got slightly carried away. Oh well, these boys are chaos incarnate anyway, so no worries I guess.

...

Climbing out of dreams, Al's unsurprised to once again find his older brother awake and panting in the aftermath of another nightmare. They'd always been frequent, but they seemed to take on a completely different, hysterical edge after his restoration. Al doesn't want to delve too deeply into the meaning of that, but it doesn't stop the concern he feels every time he finds Ed staring out the window during another bout of insomnia.

Brother.

Dragging the covers of his own bed back he gets to his feet languorously and shuffles over to his brother's side. Sitting on the edge he rubs the sleep from his eyes and blinks at the sweat-slick form in front of him. The sheets are tangled around Ed's waist and he has an uninhibited view of a firm, heaving chest. The pulse point in his neck is jumping, and for one startling moment he has the urge to bite, make a mark of ownership. But such insanity is quickly pushed away as his brother begins to calm.

What excuse will I hear tonight?

Golden eyes open and seek his through the darkness, and when Ed finds him watching over him, those eyes glaze and then shut tight like blinds over a window. Al observes as his brother swallows thickly, murmurs "Al," and then breathes deep. He knows what happens next; Ed will open his eyes and smile, in such a way you'd think it was casual and self-deprecating; but Al has watched over this man-child more intently than any other person and knows when he sees something brimming with pain.

Not anymore.

So tonight, before the usual sequence can be aired, Al leans over and presses his forehead against his brother's so he can't escape or evade, exhaling softly through his nose.

"No facades tonight, brother. I can see something is bothering you and I want to help."

Let me save you, for once.

Ed's eyes, having snapped open as soon as he felt his brother's skin pressed to his widen imperceptibly then take on gentleness only Al has ever witnessed. His breath flutters along Al's lips as he sighs but he doesn't speak. Instead he wraps a hand around Al's neck and simply holds him, still and silent, for a never-ending time.

Ed...

Despite the peace he feels so close to his brother, Al knows Ed is only giving the impression of tranquillity. Breaking away regretfully he waits for Ed's eyes to focus back on him before leaning in and pressing a tender kiss to his brother's lips.

So soft.

For a moment Ed simply lays there, a Midas statue. Then with a shiver that quakes from his chest outwards he kisses back, a soft-as-silk touch that quickly morphs into something deeper. Al closes his mind, opens his heart, and lets the sensation of mouths melding lull him. But the intimacy doesn't last long.

With a gasp Ed reels up and away, shock and guilt pasted across his features. Al frowns back, confused as to why his brother is now pressed against the headboard, fingers against his mouth and eyes wavering. It's not as if this is the first time they've kissed; as children they used kisses to comfort when everything else was dreamlike and they the only realistic things. Even as armour, Ed would sometimes touch his trembling lips to his helmet, especially when his guilt threatened to engulf him, just to remind himself his brother was still there, surviving alongside him.

But Ed looks like he's committed murder, and Al's suddenly suspicious of just what's going through his brother's mind.

Why do you push me away?

"Ed. What is it?" He shakes his head, loose hair whispering across his shoulders with the movement, and Al's eyes are captured by the hypnotic swing. When his brother speaks though, his attention snaps back up.

"Al, I...why? Why'd you kiss me?" Ed swallows, clenches his fists by his sides, and looks at Al with such desperation that he feels his heart skip.

Isn't it obvious?

"I wanted to show you I was with you, by your side. That I love you. I always have, brother. You're my whole world."

My whole universe.

Ed's eyes are wild, like he's trapped in a corner, and the panic is evident when he gives a short laugh.

"Yeah. Yeah, I know, even after – after everything I've put you through. You're my brother, after all, how could you not?"

He doesn't miss the emphasis on the word brother. He doesn't know if it's for his benefit, or if Ed is trying to convince himself of something. Searching, intent, he takes in the way Ed's eyes dart from his chest to his face to lower and –

No.

It can't be that.

But the aversion to touch, the insomnia from unexplained nightmares – what if they weren't nightmares, but the implication –

Oh.

Al's eyes widen, and he inhales quickly in sudden, blinding realisation. But just as quickly, his face is a blank mask as he realises the next move he makes is going to have to be carefully calculated. He won't – can't – reject his brother, despite Ed thinking he might deserve that for all the supposed pain he's saddled Al with, and he also doesn't miss the jolt of excitement he feels at this new revelation.

"Brother. Do you love me?"

God, do you?

And it's there, the tiniest of shivers, the tensing of shoulders, how could he not have seen?

"Course – course I do. Wouldn't be here if I didn't."

Al smiles, the barest hint of mockery.

"No, brother. I mean do you love me?"

Do you want me?

And he knows it's blunt, and it's the most difficult question Ed's ever going to have to answer, but like ripping off a bandaid, he understands that it'll be easier if the confessions are dealt with now, in the present, rather than accumulating doubts like static.

Ed's shivering is more pronounced and his hands have risen to clutch at his thighs but as much as Al wants to fold him into his embrace, he knows it would only make things worse. This has to be of his own volition because otherwise it doesn't mean half as much –

Please.

"Yeah. Yeah, I do." It's the smallest whisper, so faint Al almost doesn't hear it but it's confirmation and his heart's about to burst from his chest it's beating so hard, like a bird flapping against the bars of a cage. Ed's shrinking into himself as if he's unleashed some sort of unspeakable horror which this could never be because it's Ed and when he loves it's of the purest kind so he needs to do something quick.

Slowly, as if afraid to spook him as he might a horse, Al moves to his hands and knees and crawls to his brother's side, up to his legs and over until he straddles the air above his hips. And then he waits.

Eventually, Ed's eyes stop focussing anywhere but on him and come to a rest just above his own gaze. For a frozen moment they merely breathe, Al supporting himself rigidly and Ed refusing to see what he desperately wills him to. Finally, Al sighs softly before stroking his fingertips along the clenched jaw in front of him. Lightly, over and over until the tension seems to seep like water from a strainer and Ed moves to catch his hand in his.

Don't you dare let go.

Al raises his eyes from where they're focused on their joined hands and sees Ed looking straight at him with a question and a longing and a hope all so intense he wonders if he'll be consumed. So he leans forward and once again presses his lips to his brother's, whispers his answer against his mouth with brushes like butterfly wings.

Love you, want you. I thought you'd see.

Ed doesn't hesitate now to wrap his arms around him tightly, crushing him to his chest as his heart beats a tattoo that mirrors Al's own.

Their lips slip along each other's as respective fingers tangle in hair, the heat between them almost tangible. Ed's hand brings their hips together with a crackle of friction and Al makes some sort of noise which is lost in the haze of pleasure engulfing them as he grinds into the warmth emanating from his brother's vibrating body. Ed's answering whimper is equally disregarded as they rock apart from the inside out.

I need you.

When their mouths break apart to gasp in air, Al feels the same primal urge from before to mark the pale neck before him, to claim what he now sees is and always will be his. He leans down and kisses the area gently, as if swabbing before an injection, then bites without preamble. Ed's cry of desire is as marvellous as the joy this revelation of forbidden love has brought, and just as overwhelming.

Drunk. You're making me drunk...

It's as if Ed wants to be conquered as he gives into gravity and collapses against the headboard dizzily, as if he wants Al to smother him and resurrect his being into something euphoric, and the way he tilts his head back so Al can continue his trail of bites across that bobbing Adam's apple and nip the sensitive skin along the automail port leaves him with no qualms of just who is leading this dance of theirs tonight.

So sweet. Brother, you taste of the sun.

The entire situation is beginning to drive Al to the end of his restraint as he licks along a collarbone and kisses the hollow where throat meets chest, and he doesn't know if the slip into that unknown is wise. But when Ed arcs his back like he can't bear to break contact with Al for even a second, it's as if a switch has been flipped – and the growl he releases, feral and wild, has Ed shivering and clenching his fingers tighter where they have curled into the sheets.

Mine.

From there, it is a flurry of tossed clothes, of small eager noises and animalistic groans as Al undoes his brother with both fingers and mouth. He learns that when he flicks a nipple with a fingernail, Ed makes a choked sound in the back of his throat; when he dips his tongue into his brother's navel, he whimpers. Placing a sucking kiss to the indent where hip meets pelvis produces a groan, and when he licks straight from balls to the sensitive head of his cock, Ed cries out. But when he takes the tip into his mouth and sucks while slipping one crooked finger into his ass, Ed screams the most beautiful scream and shatters.

Can't wait anymore – have to have you.

As soon as Ed's a panting, shaky mess still twitching from post orgasm, Al slips another finger inside and splays both. The shock of pain is registered only as a brief hiss before he twists just so and all discomfort is replaced with shouts of "F-fuck, Al!" and bucking hips. There is one brief moment when Al almost regrets taking control; but as he breaches the ring of muscle for the first time and slides into tightness and heat with a breathless "Oh!" Ed takes his face in his hands so all he sees is his flushed cheeks and shining eyes and says simply "Thank you, Alphonse."

Afterwards, when they're both exhausted and Al's muscles feel wrung out from so much use, he takes his brother's hand in his and raises it to his lips. When Ed turns to him he smiles, kisses each knuckle and then whispers a promise he'll forever keep.

"No more nightmares, brother. I'll make sure of it."

Dream a dream of me.

And Ed kisses him, weightless, and answers

"I know."

I will.

...

Our kitten went missing, and I seem to be channeling the melancholia. I'm sure I'll soon be too busy to even bother with emotion, so I think I'll just lap it up. Enjoy the new week..