KissMeDeadlyT-T: YOOOOOO. Sorry for the long wait, again, and no, for everyone who asked, I'm NOT DISCONTINUING THIS EVER I'm just taking a long, long time to write it.
I think this chapter is a tad bit shorter than the rest, but hopefully the… content makes up for its lack of length.
I am going through a writer's block, again, and I'm finding everything extremely difficult to write, even the drabbles I usually shit out on a daily basis. So, uhh, I don't know if anyone will be able to tell with the quality of this chapter, but just… bear with me. I've had it written for a little while and I've just been tweaking at it, but I decided to stop before I make it worse.
Also sorry for any typos— It's late, and I think I nabbed 'em all… but I probably didn't.
I finally find it in me to drag myself off of the ground and into the bed on the far side of the room. It's covered in a simple green duvet with four fat pillows at the top, and even though it's nothing special, I sink into it and bury my face in the pillows as if it's five star hotel worthy. I lay there for the longest time, unable to even make out any of my thoughts because they're all such a jumbled mess, until I finally decide to kick off my pants and my coat, tossing them onto the floor without care before falling back onto the bed. This is torture. I shouldn't have said yes; I shouldn't have stayed. Because now, it isn't a nagging pain in my chest— it's a full-blown squeezing pain that makes me want to throw up and cry and scream. I don't want this. I don't want it at all. I can't have him, and it's like every second he's around me, he's torturing me with his mere presence.
My throat tightens around a painful lump and my eyes sting with tears, but for the first time, I make no effort to stop it. Tears of shame and hopelessness and blatant need roll down my cheeks and dampen the pillow, and I take a bite of the cloth to muffle a sob. How perfect is this? I'm crying over some guy I can't have. Some guy who happens to be a lot less of an asshole and a lot more real than I ever imagined. I know I've said this before, but I only really understand the truth of it now; I am completely, irrevocably and wholly, screwed.
I don't believe in fate, or that we have some predetermined path, or any of that shit— but for some reason it just seems like the universe is out to get me. He's so out of my reach and I know it, so why can't I stop feeling this way? Even after everything that happened tonight—after all the stupid little nice things he did that made my heart pound, my mouth dry, my hands shake, like he might have an inkling of the same emotion I feel for him— I know there's no way in hell or heaven or life or whatever that he would reciprocate these stupid feelings. Even if he is gay— or, more likely, bisexual, because I can't forget about all of his infamous sexcapades with countless women— why would he feel that way about me? I'm not stupid. I see the age difference. The gap— it's huge, and never mind the fact that even this, me sleeping in the same house as him, is a risk to his job. Feelings for me could ruin everything he'd ever dreamed about— and as selfish as I am, I could never ask him to throw that away for my sake.
I thought that I'd be able to handle it, simply being by his side as his subordinate, as a friend— but I think that's worse. Because like this, I'll be in his life, watch him find someone, watch him be happy and in love with someone that isn't me. Even though I want him to be happy— I can't bear to see it. I'm selfish and it disgusts me but that's that. This isn't even a stupid crush anymore. I fucking love Roy Mustang, and there's nothing I can do about it.
I release another sob into the pillow and wipe roughly at my eyes. I have to stop feeling sorry for myself. Crying like this isn't going to get me anywhere and it makes my head pound anyway. Using the sheet to rub at my face, I swallow hard to quell the next round of tears, and blink up at the ceiling, forcing it down. I should probably try to sleep; I really am tired, and sitting here crying isn't gonna do anything but make me feel even worse.
I stare out the window and try to clear my head so that I can get some sleep. The sky is dark beyond the light crème blinds; it looks like there's a storm coming, and fast. There's a faint rumble in the distance, and I can see the clouds light up every so often. I watch it until my eyelids feel heavy, until there are raindrops pelting at the window, until my head is clear, until I'm finally starting to drift off.
Then, suddenly, a booming round of thunder cracks through the sky, a plaster of rain attacking the window as wind howls and makes the house groan. It's so abrupt that I jolt up, my heart in my throat, and nearly fall out of the bed. After my heart finally calms down, I exhale slowly, wrapping the top comforter around my shoulders. Well, I probably wasn't going to get much sleep tonight anyway.
Thunder rumbles outside as I push open the door, glancing down the dark hallway just in time for another flash of lightning to brighten the way to the staircase. The harsh light sends gloomy shadows dancing on the pale walls; the sight sends a cold chill down my back, the unfamiliar setting thrown off-balance in the flickering light. It's creepy, but I somehow don't feel unsafe, knowing that Mustang is close. Shaking my head, I hurry down the hall and stairs, minding not to trip over the blanket that trails on the floor behind me, using the flashing lightning as a guide to the living room, where I curl up on the bay window seat and let out another sigh. He did say to make himself at home, so I guess I will.
I don't know how long I sit there, watching the storm outside, seeing trees sway and hearing wind moan and listening to the gutter squeak and sputter and spray water onto the sopping grass below. The clouds roil and churn around forks of glowing white lightning, and in a moment of pensiveness, I think that they remind me of the current state of my emotions. Shutting my eyes, I rest my forehead against the cool window pane, listening to the rain and trying not to think about anything except the sound of the storm because thinking is just too hard to deal with right now.
The soft voice makes me jump and yelp, and before I can catch myself, I'm on the ground, my left hip throbbing and an involuntary curse flying out of me as I whack my funny bone on the floor. Clutching at the spot where my pounding heart would be, I stare up with wide eyes to see a concerned (and amused) looking Roy staring down at me. His black eyes are hard to read in the dark, but when the lightning flashes and lights him up for a brief moment, I can see it— he's trying not to laugh. My face finds its way into my default Roy Mustang is near scowl.
"What?" I mutter, a bit snarkier than I meant to.
"Why are you up?" he asks, offering me a hand. I stare for a moment, debating on how rude it would be to ignore it, until I finally grab it— with my metal hand— and let him help me up. As quickly as I can without looking suspicious, I withdraw my hand, clutching the comforter tight around my shoulders.
"Can't sleep." I avoid looking at him directly. He's wearing a soft T-shirt and loose PJ pants, and his hair is just a bit messier than it usually is. It makes my heart flutter, seeing him so casual and off-guard. "Well, why are you?"
Roy sort of just looks away and shrugs. "Couldn't sleep either, I suppose."
I study him for another moment— the lightning shows me his face, and I can immediately tell something is off. He's not meeting my eyes and he has this look about him, like he's tired, but not because of lack of sleep. Almost like he's on the verge of hysteria but doing a really good job hiding it. Not good enough, apparently. Narrowing my eyes, I say, "Really."
"Of course," he replies, turning his back to me. "Why else?"
"Well, I don't know," I say, staring at the back of his head. "Don't lie to me, Mustang."
"I'm not lying. I really can't sleep."
"I'm not tired?"
"Is that a question, or an answer?"
For a moment, he stares at me. Then, he looks away again. "Don't worry about it."
Does he have to be so damn irritating? Losing my already-thin patience, I stomp up to him and grab his wrist before he can walk away. "Hey," I say angrily. "Tell me, damn it."
He turns back, eyes focusing on my hand around his wrist for a moment, until he finally meets my eyes. Even in the dark, I can tell something's really bugging him. I've gotten quite a lot of practice reading past the meticulous Mustang mask, and even though most other people would believe he's really okay, I don't. "I ain't buyin' your stupid tough guy act. What's wrong?"
Something in his eyes crumbles, then, and his shoulders slump visibly. "You're stubborn."
"You've known since you met me."
"Yes," he admits reluctantly. "I have."
"It's… the thunder." He averts his eyes again.
"You're scared of thunder?" I ask, cocking an eyebrow.
"Not of the thunder," he says. He takes a deep breath. "It reminds me of explosions… which reminds me of the war."
I should have expected that. Crap, now I feel like a complete jerk. "Oh," I say quietly. "Sorry."
"It's fine." Really, he doesn't sound angry, so I spare a glance up. He's actually smiling at me. My heart does that funny flop it loves to do around him and I feel the corners of my lips twitch, but I resist the urge to smile back because his looks forced and it doesn't quite reach his eyes. I realize then that I'm still holding his wrist, so I hastily step back, another apology on the tip of my tongue. "Don't apologize," he says before I can get it out. "It's fine. Really."
"Um, so…" I hesitate, unsure if this is a good idea or if I'm just about to make an ass of myself. "Do you… need to talk?" My ears burn in embarrassment as soon as I say it. Stupid, stupid, stupid. We're not girls, we're not supposed to talk about feelings and shit like that, gate, I'm such an idiot sometimes. I try to dull the heat of my face by adding, "I mean… sometimes it helps… to talk. Right? I don't— I don't really know if I can completely understand, but I can listen… if you want."
For a moment, he looks surprised. "Wow, Ed."
My face heats up almost unbearably, and I look to the side. I wish he'd go back to calling me Fullmetal— it's easier than to pretend I don't have these stupid feelings for him than it is to do that when he uses my name. "What?"
"I didn't think you actually cared."
"Of course I care," I blurt before I can stop myself. His eyebrows raise further, and I attempt to soften the confession by stuttering out, "I— I mean, why wouldn't I? You're a bastard but you're still… a decent person, so…"
"A decent person," he repeats, a wry tone to his voice. "You do know what I did to all those innocent people in Ishbal, don't you?"
A bit uncomfortable with the way he said it, I sit back on the window ledge. I want to look away, but I feel like that wouldn't be right for this— so I force myself to look him in the eye and say, "Yeah, I know. I spoke to the Lieutenant about it, remember? She told me everything. But I don't think it makes you a bad person, necessarily."
"Really?" he says dryly. "I followed orders to slaughter innocent people, even though I knew they went against all basics of human morality. I tore families apart. I murdered childrens' parents right before their eyes. It wasn't exactly a painless death, either— burning a human body isn't an instantaneous thing. I did it to keep my job, Edward. No one held me at gunpoint and forced me to do it." The thunder cracks again, right above the roof, and I see him flinch. Quietly, he finishes, "If that doesn't make me a monster, I don't know what does."
He looks so haunted— I wonder if that's how I look when I think about what Al and I did all those years ago. My stomach clenches and churns and I bite my lip anxiously for a moment, studying him, until I finally stand up and say, "Sit down."
He cocks his head, like he wasn't sure he heard me right. "Excuse me?"
"Sit," I say again, pushing him back towards the couch. "You look like you could use a drink, yeah?"
"Edward," he protests as I march straight to the kitchen. I hear him stand up and glare back at him.
"Roy," I respond, fighting to keep my voice even. He looks cornered, almost like a kicked puppy, and it makes my heart feel strange, like it's trying to crack into two. "I'm not saying alcohol is a solution, but you need to relax. So," I begin rummaging through his cupboards, until I find a glass bottle of scotch hidden in the back, "humour me."
"You're underage," he reminds me, but he sounds so tired that I don't even bat an eyelash.
"What are you gonna do, report me?" I say wryly. "To yourself?"
He glares. "I'm not drinking with you around."
"One glass, bastard." I pour a bit of the dark alcohol into a glass, which I found in one of the top cupboards. "Don't try to tell me you're fine, because you're not. I've had plenty of practice picking out peoples' emotions, and you're trying your hardest not to break, aren't you?"
"This is a bad idea," he says warily, watching me with cautious eyes as I walk back and sit down next to him. He stares at the glass in my hand, but doesn't take it, choosing instead to lift his gaze to meet mine and say again, "I'm not drinking, not with you here."
"I might do something I'll regret."
A pleasant tingle rushes down my spine. I want badly to ask him what he means, but I bite down my curiosity, and shove the glass towards him again. "You're not gonna get drunk off of one glass," I tell him, even though I know he knows. His stare wavers, and I finally let myself smile a bit. "I know how it feels to have post-traumatic stress disorder, Mustang, and I also know that you need to relax. So go on," I prompt softly, "I'm not going to let you do anything stupid."
"You're too stubborn for your own good," he mutters. He finally takes the glass, hesitating for a moment before he brings it to his lips, watching me with wary eyes as he takes a tiny sip. I try to smile reassuringly, but I'm sure it looks forced— it's hard to keep this up when he's so close. I think the only reason I can resist doing something stupid is because I do genuinely care, and I do want him to relax, because that haunted, somber look on his face makes my stomach roil and my chest feel painfully tight.
"You know," I say after a moment of this weird tension where we just stare at each other, "I don't think you're a monster."
"Then you're an idiot," he says blatantly, tipping the glass back again.
"Call me what you want, but I still don't think you're a bad person." I fidget for a moment— it's hard to open up, but he looks so in pain that I have to try. "I can't deny that what you did was horrible. Maybe you were a monster then, but not anymore. War… changes people, right? None of you were the same person you were before, or after. It's in the past, though, and… well, even though that's a part of you, it's what you do now that determines what you are." He mumbles my name, then, but I'm not done. Meeting his eyes again, I choose my words carefully, and slowly say, "You can't take back what you did, and I get that, but… you're compensating, at least a little bit. You're gonna be Fuhrer someday, right?"
"I suppose," he says quietly.
This next part breaks my heart— because I remember what Hawkeye said: How they're going to have themselves punished for the crimes they did during the Rebellion. My throat feels tight, but I manage to get it out. "Then change things. Make it so that something like that never happens again. But…" I swallow past the painful lump in my throat and stare down at my lap before whispering, "I don't want you to put yourself up for execution. That's just what they want, and you aren't going to make things better by killing yourself." My hands curl into fists. "A life doesn't equal a life, Roy. I don't think you're a monster— but if you really think that, then change it."
It falls silent between us, and I begin to think that maybe I really did make a fool of myself. Hesitantly, I turn my head to look at him, and I'm shocked to see him staring at the ceiling, his eyes wet. My heart squeezes. "Sorry," I say. "Maybe I shouldn't have said that."
"No, I needed to hear it," he breathes, shoulders relaxing visibly. He places the empty glass on the coffee table before straightening and giving me a long, hard look. I squirm under the scrutiny, my cheeks heating up at the intensity of it. Finally, he smiles softly and says, "You really are a good kid, aren't you?"
The tension is strange— not bad, just weird. To cover up my flush, I scoff and mutter, "Yeah, well, don't get used to it."
He just grins. "I'd never even think of it."
We fall into silence, again, just sitting there next to each other, watching the thunder from the bay window. It's peaceful, with just the sound of water hitting the pane and thunder rumbling above us and wind hitting the side of the house, and I can almost pretend that being in love with him doesn't break my heart.
"We should probably go to sleep," I say after a while.
"You're right," he sighs, getting to his feet. I'm not far behind as we walk back up the stairs. I almost expect him to keep walking straight to his room, but instead, he hesitates again in front of my door. I lick my lips automatically, but I know there's nothing on them— I just can't think of why he'd stop.
"Um, so…" I tighten the blanket around myself. "Are you going to… go to sleep, or…"
He looks, for a moment, like he might turn and leave, but instead, he steps forward and pull me in for a tight hug. My heart jumps up into my throat and pounds there, leaving me speechless and dizzy and absolutely shocked. My face is hot. Too hot. What the hell is going on?
"Colonel," I whisper, my voice barely audible and shaking so hard I wonder if he can understand it. "What—"
"Thank you," he breathes into the crown of my head, tightening his arms around me. My knees start to shake and I feel inexplicably choked up again, so I use the closeness to bury my face in his chest to muffle a choked sob. I should push him away. I should tell him to go to sleep and close the door behind me. But I can't. I can't make myself move. I wonder if he can feel me crying. If the way he pulls me in even closer means anything, I think he can.
"You're crying," he says quietly, like he can read my mind. "Why?"
His fingers rest under my chin and he softly tilts my head up, but I refuse to meet his eyes. "Tell me," he orders softly.
This is too much— we're standing so close, I can feel the heat from his body melt into mine. One arm is still around my waist, and it presses me close to him— I can feel his body through the thin shirts and bottoms we wear, and it's making my heart pound so hard I can hear blood rush in my head. The smell of scotch is faint on his otherwise minty breath, so intoxicating that I can hardly stand up and automatically, without even thinking, like it's an old habit, my hands curl into fists in the back of his shirt. I'm not even sure why I'm crying— maybe because this is so close to what I want, but I know I can never have it. I am sure of one thing, though; I really, really want to kiss him. I can almost feel his lips ghosting across my forehead, and I shut my eyes, pressing my lips together tight to push out every sensation except for my brain telling me that I need to step away before I do something I regret. But I can't. My legs won't listen.
Soft fingers brushing my cheek and wiping away the wetness there lulls me into opening my eyes—which I immediately regret. All I can see are his black eyes looking down at me, and his lips, pulled down into a faint frown, but gate they look so soft, and I just… I think I'm drowning. His eyes are so black and full of emotion like they never are and it's all I can do not to let go and fall into them and never come back out.
"Tell me," he says again, still in that gentle way.
"I… no, I can't—"
"You can tell me," he murmurs. His breath tickles my forehead and I shut my eyes again. I can't stop shaking. I can't tell him. I can't, I can't, this is so wrong—
"Edward," he says softly, brushing my bangs away from my face and tucking them behind my ear, and that's all I can take before I break.
"I love you," I whisper, my voice trembling, and suddenly, there's a huge weight lifted off of my shoulders. My eyes sting and I feel tears rolling down my cheeks again, but I make no effort to hide it this time. "I'm sorry, I know it's wrong, and you can hate me, if you want, but— I can't— I can't take it anymore, I'm so sorry, I just— I lo—"
"Stop," he interrupts, and I immediately do, my heart sinking right into my stomach. What was I thinking? Why did I tell him? I knew I should have kept my mouth shut, damn it, I knew it—
His fingers come up to wipe at my cheeks again, and a wry, sideways smile curves his lips. If I wasn't so confused, I might have lost my control again and kissed him right then and there. "Don't apologize," he reprimands softly. "Not for something like that."
My chest feels tight again. "What are you saying?" Fuck, I sound like someone is squeezing my windpipe. Damn it. This is not happening. He shouldn't be looking at me like that— with the same look in his eyes that I get thinking about him. He shouldn't be tilting my head up again. He shouldn't be leaning closer— and he really shouldn't be kissing me.
But he is.
Just like that, my breath leaves me, and my knees really do buckle. My hands fly out and grab hold of his arms and I stand there, frozen in shock, as his lips press softly against mine. He doesn't seem to be put off by my slow response, or by the fact that I'm shaking so hard I can hardly stand and my fingers are digging into his arms so hard I'm positive I feel blood. This can't be happening. This whole night has to have been some sort of sick idea my mind came up with to torture me. I wonder if he can hear my heart hammering or feel the flush rising in my cheeks or the way that I can't breathe. His mouth is warm, hot, softer than I could have ever imagined; and I have imagined, but nothing I've ever dreamt up can even begin to compare. As if in amusement, his lips curve up against mine, and he brings a hand up to cup my cheek, tilting my head and flicking his tongue between my lips until I have to open them because I can't hold back anymore.
I've heard about the fireworks and sparks that you're supposed to feel for your first kiss, but that has nothing on this. It's like fire. Burning me up from the inside, flames licking at my heart and flickering in my nerves and making my entire body heat up and melt into him like goo. He's gentle, loving even, moving his lips with a tenderness that I never thought he was capable of, and I finally get the courage to press back, sliding my hands up his arms to wrap behind his neck and pull myself closer. A low hum of delight vibrates from his mouth to mine, and his arms tighten around my waist until we're flush together and I can't even think anymore or focus on anything except how impossible this is, but that it's happening, and I can taste the scotch on his tongue and feel every inch of him pressed against me and how my heart is pounding so hard and fast that it's making me dizzy. My knees are shaking. I'm going to crumble to my feet any second now, but I don't care— I don't care about anything except for the fact that Roy Mustang is kissing me, and it isn't a dream.
Just when I begin to feel like I might pass out, he pulls away, pausing a moment to slide his tongue across my bottom lip. I can't quite hold back a moan. I'm sure I look a mess— my cheeks are flushed, my lips are all wet and god, let's not get started on my hair— but he doesn't seem to care. He just looks down at me, and I stare back as steadily as I can through my impossibly hot blush, breathing heavily, trying to catch my breath. It pisses me off a bit that he's not nearly as flustered as I am, but I guess that wasn't his first kiss. But it was mine. And I was not disappointed. Just thoroughly stunned.
"So," he says after a moment of silence where I just gawk at him because I can't wrap my head around the fact that he just kissed me, "do you…" He falters then, like he lost his nerve. After biting his lip for a moment, he tentatively finishes, "Do you want to sleep with me?"
My whole face gets hot and I stare at him with wide eyes. "What?"
"Oh, damn it— I meant— I didn't mean that." He's flushed too, and I can't help but laugh. He glares for a moment, but it softens to a faint smile, and then he's laughing too, pulling me into an embrace that's solid and warm and gentle at the same time. "You're an idiot. I meant did you want to sleep, sleep, in my room, instead of alone in here?"
"I— uh, I… okay," I finally get out. After another moment of staring like a moron, I smirk a bit and jab at his side with my elbow. "What?" I say, grinning up at him. "Need me to protect you from the big bad thunder?"
"You know what, screw you. You can sleep outside."
"Nope, the offer is made. You can't kick me out now."
"I'm too tired for this," he says warily.
I grin up at him, my eyes stinging again, but this time it isn't in pain. I'm so giddy I can't wipe the stupid grin off my face, and I'm sure I look like an idiot, but I can't find it in me to care. "Good thing you invited me to bed, isn't it, bastard?"
"Clearly the fact that I just kissed you isn't going to change your attitude towards me."
"I don't know why you'd think it would."
KissMeDeadlyT-T: UUuuGGghhHHhhh I was working on the ending to this for so long. I just didn't know what to do with it, so I left it like this. I hope it didn't move too fast and damn, I struggle to write anything like kissing or sexy times so I'm hoping the kiss was alright. I don't get the 'completed' feeling from this chapter, either, so there'll probably be another one to wrap it all up. Eventually. I just had to throw in the good ol' Roy/Ed bicker fests that I enjoy so much.
Anyway, sorry for rambling so much (again). Thanks for reading :)