Edward Elric stood silently in front of Father, looking straight ahead as the being slowly started to deteriorate before him.
"It's over, Father." He huffed in tranquil fury. "Your reign of terror was short-lived."
"No...How...How could this be?" The godlike being yelled in complete agony and shock. "Me, a God, bested by a mere human..." His frown turned into a smile while the last of him blew with the wind. "If he should be called that anymore..."
Edward stood there in confusion. What did he meant by that? But before he could continue figuring it out, a cry from May quickly brought him back to reality.
Alphonse was gone. And he was willing to go to hell and back in order to bring him back home. Even if he was to die to get there.
Without a single word, Edward went over and grabbed a nearby stick. Everyone bared witness as the young prodigy drew a huge transmutation circle around him before throwing the stick away.
"Take a good look, everyone!" He smashed his hands together, electricity crackling at his palms as he did so. "Because this is my last performance!" With that bold declaration, he pressed his hands into the circle, causing it to glow brightly.
Once he had opened his eyes, the teenage alchemist found himself back where he started. The Gate.
"Well, well," The white spectral being known as Truth looked at him with a amused smile. "Looks like the prodigal son finally returned. You know what will be the price for your brother's life?"
"Yeah." He placed his hand on the gate behind him. "This right here. My whole life I've been trying to find answers to questions unknown, but I had never noticed that the answers were right in front of me this whole time. Even if you have unlimited knowledge, you would still end up back in the same place you've always been."
"You do have a point there, but you don't need to sacrifice anything else. You already have sacrificed something greater than what you already have."
He froze. "What? What is it?"
A grin grew on Truth's face. "You'll find out soon enough. In the meantime, your brother is here. He's over at the other side."
Edward paused once he noticed the being slowly disappearing. "Wait!"
"See you later, Fullmetal Alchemist.."
The teen stood there silently before stopping to see the other gate where a certain person was waiting for him. The frail boy looked up at him with a small smile. "Took you long enough." Edward smiled at his younger brother's newfound snark.
"Hey. I said I was coming back, wasn't I?" He said with a reassuring smile as he kneeled down to his level and helped his brother up.
His golden eyes softened. "Yeah. You did, didn't you?"
"Let's go back home, Al." The two brothers walked hand in hand towards the Gate as it opened before them. "Together.."
Once the fog was cleared, Edward stood in the middle of the battlefield with his brother on his back. He stumbled a bit, feeling a bit surprised to feel a bit of a change of weight on his body.
A flash of red lightning tempted him to look down only for his eyes to grow wide once he saw what had just transpired during the transmutation.
His other leg grew back.
"I'm sorry, Al. I hope you can forgive me for this.."
The younger Elric slowly opened his eyes to find himself sitting up with a spare piece of the battlefield on his barren back. A young Xingese girl was looking at him longingly with tears in both her eyes and Xiao-Mei's upon doing so.
Roy, Riza, Ling, Lan-Fan, Hohenheim and the others smiled while watching the two embrace each other without the metal suit. While watching everyone celebrate their victory against the inhumane menace known as Father, Al had the sinking feeling that something was missing.
Or rather. someONE.
"Everyone." As soon as he opened his mouth, everyone around him had stopped to hear what he had to say. With a serious face, Al decided to ask the first thing that had came to his mind.
"Has anyone seen Edward?"
Unbeknownst to them, said boy watching the scene unfold from behind one of the buildings that were still standing even after the attack.
His eyes softened before looking at the bottom of his right foot where there lied a ouroboros symbol right on it.
He flinched for a moment before clutching his chest, his mind filled with the moans and groans of many people. The blond breathed heavily, sweat going down his face. A bittersweet smile grew as he continued ahead.
"Well, I guess I could use this time to get to know you guys better, huh? But before we do, let's find ourselves some place to stay for the night. I hope you don't mind staying in a hotel."
A young woman sat at the hotel entrance in silence until someone came inside. "Excuse me, miss." She stopped and looked up to see a young man with long brown hair and a brown jacket covering the right side of his face, leaving one golden eye open. "Can I have a room for one please?"
He gently handed her some money which she happily accepted. "Sure! You can have Room 1B." She gave him the key which he also happily accepted. "It's the first door upstairs. You can't miss it."
The brunet smiled gracefully. "Thank you."
Once he locked the door behind him, the man smirked as he shut the blinds. He took off the wig, revealing his golden blond hair underneath. His right eye, however, was completely purple. Ever since his abnormal transition from human to monster, it wasn't going to be too long for the other signs to become noticeable over time, which was definitely a bad thing if you don't want anyone to notice you.
Edward let out a big sigh after he changed his clothes and uncurled his ponytail before lying down in bed. He stared at the ceiling blankly before slowly closing his eyes and going to sleep.
In the middle of the night, he woke up to the sound of footsteps. His antenna like curl straightened up as he immediately went out of the room and walked downstairs before stopping and peeking out to see what was going on.
"Alright." One man said as he and the other man walked up to the woman with a gun in his hand. "Give me your money or else I'll shoot you."
She shook with fear before nervously holding the bag and taking out the money.
"Hurry it up!" She picked up the pace and put all of it inside.
The two robbers looked up and stopped to see Edward standing in front of them. "That doesn't belong to either one of you. Give her back the money."
The leader smirked. "Oh yeah? What are you going to do about it, shrimp?"
Edward's eyes hardened in tranquil fury. "WHAT did you just call me?" The atmosphere grew heavy around the three while the other robber's smirk grew wide."Didn't you hear me? Oh yeah, you can't because you're short." They both erupted with laughter.
"I mean seriously! He's like some kind of half-pint midget!"
"How old is he? 12?"
They continued to laugh until their eyes started to tear up. Soon, their laughter came to a slow end once another started to laugh with them.
They both froze as they looked over to see it was coming from the boy in front of them. He continued to laugh while he placed his hand on a nearby wall and pulled out a giant staff.
Their faces grew pale when he pointed the blade in front of them. "Alright, you pathetic pieces of scum, give her back her money if you don't want your butts handed to you on a sliver platter."
The leader quickly stopped the bag and ran off, leaving the young alchemist alone. "Stupid humans..." He scoffed to himself before stopping once he realized what he just said.
Afterwards, the young lady stood up to see the young man was gone. She looked in front of her to see the bag of money on her desk along with a note.
Thanks for the hospitality.
The blond alchemist trudged through the night, his face shrouded with a red jacket that he got at a local store. He clutched his head as a wave of lightheadedness came through him. His hands itching to get everyone out of his way.
Hold yourself together, Ed....You can do this. Just...Just think about the people you care about you.
Winry- His train of thought got interrupted when he bumped into a stranger. Edward looked over his shoulder in a apologetic manner. “Sorry for bumping into you like that-“ He came to a stop when the man grabbed him by his right shoulder. “Hey! You can’t say sorry like that and just leave!”
Feeling his rage increasing, Edward managed to control his temper and remain calm. But due to his unstable emotions, he knew he wouldn’t be able to keep this for too long. “Let go of me before I do something that we’ll both regret.”
“Oh! You think that you’re such a tough guy, huh?”
He clenched his teeth together to keep himself from attacking him relentlessly out in the open. “Please.” His voice grew shaky. “This is my last warning. I don’t want to hurt you.”
“No can do. You can’t just leave out of this one, you little ru-“ But before he can finish his sentence, the man found himself at the receiving end of a death glare, his eyes were tinted red while doing so. “What were you going to say?”
“N-Nothing, nothing! I swear!”
The murderous aura around him dissipated as quickly as it came. “Good.”
He continued ahead, grumbling to himself about someone calling him short.
Edward sat at a empty alleyway, breathing heavily as he clutched his chest, his hand gripping his black shirt tightly over where his philosopher’s stone was inside of him. His body aching for more souls, he clenched his sharpened teeth together, struggling to maintain what little humanity he had left.
His metaphorical heart skipped a beat when his ears picked up the sounds of someone being hassled by a group of men.
”LET GO! LET GO OF ME!” A young woman screamed out while the men looked down on her with sadistic glee. They stopped once they heard the empty sound of footsteps coming towards them. “My, my....Looks like I’ve got myself a bunch of troublesome jerks harming a young, innocent lady...” The blond looked up at them with a cocky smile. “Pretty cruel for a couple of useless insects...”
The leader frowned. “What did you say, punk?” Much to their surprise and annoyance, he simply walked past them and gently picked her up. “Are you alright, miss?”
”Yes...Thank you. But...what about you?”
”Me?” He questioned with a smirk. “Don’t worry about it. I can handle these worthless nobodies with a single move. Now get out of here before things get a little more...messy.” The woman nodded before she ran off, leaving the teen by himself.
“So..” The three men paused when they felt the atmosphere change drastically as he pulled out a scythe from the floor before looking at him with a cocky and maniacal grin. “Which one of you wants to go first?” In a flash, he mercilessly sliced one of the men in half, rendering the other two completely speechless as they watched someone die right in front of them.
This wasn't a normal kid they were fighting against. Oh no, they were fighting something much worse than that.
The tired look on the monster's face didn't help either. "Huh. I didn't expect his death to be so quick. I was hoping for more of a challenge. Maybe you guys could make up for it?"
No...This is wrong.. I shouldn't be this...
They immediately began to panic as he slowly walked towards them. Edward just smiled at their reactions while slowly getting ready for the kill.
The two men looked up at the blade in fear as he lifted up the weapon above his head.
I SAID STOP GOD DAMN IT!
Echoes of metal clanging onto the empty alleyway shattered the silence between the men and the teen standing before them. The two men froze once they saw his body stop moving. The confidence and pure sadism in his eyes were about little to none as he clutched his head in pain.
They stood there, watching in utter shock as the teen continued to fight for his life. After hours of internal suffering and pain, the two men immediately covered their ears when he let out a loud scream of anguish before fainting right in front of them.
The two delinquents looked at each other, both of them feeling utterly lost on what just happened. They both froze once they saw a glimpse of two men wearing blue outfits coming over.
Right when one of the soldiers opened his mouth, they immediately ran off, leaving the alchemist behind.
"Well, that was strange." One of the military men replied. "Those guys ran off before we could say anything."
The other walked up to the teen's body and examined it closely. After a quick look, he took out a piece of paper listing a series of characteristics and info. After that he gently picked him up from the ground and looked at his partner. "We're taking him to Headquarters."
The light brunet paused in surprise. "What? Why?"
The raven haired man glanced at the boy's sleeping face. "Because I got a feeling that the Kinesthetic Alchemist would like to see this."
Chains rattled and shook in the midst of all the souls floating around them. Edward looked at his chaotic doppelgänger as the raven haired homunculus continued to struggle.
“Why? Why?! WHY DIDN’T YOU LET ME KILL THEM?!”
”Don’t give me that crap.” The sharp toothed beast retorted. “We could’ve been able to replenish our Philosopher’s stone if it wasn’t for you!”
”And do you think that Al and Winry would like to hear that we killed someone?”
”AT LEAST IT’S BETTER THAN DYING!”
Silence echoed through the shared mindscape.
”....So why are you here with me?” The raven haired copy looked at the alchemist. ”Don’t you believe that homunculi are dangerous?”
“That’s what I originally thought. But I know that deep down inside you‘re not like this at all.”
”And so what?” He frowned. “Do you really think we could be all buddy buddy and talk about our feelings like a bunch of girls?” He scoffed. “Fat chance.”
“No.” Edward shook his head before smirking. “I’m just going to sit here and bother you until you give in and start talking.”
His eye twitched in annoyance. ”Seriously?”
The alchemist only replied with a smirk. “Unless you want to stay in those chains..”
”Alright! Alright!” He glanced away from the blond. “My name is Rage. There. You happy now?"
Edward smirked as everything started to become brighter around them.
The young state alchemist woke up to the serenity of the sun setting outside of the window. His vision still hazy, he slowly raised himself from his bed and looked around to find himself in a hospital.
He sat there, completely dumbfounded until he touched his forehead, feeling the roughness of the bandages wrapped around it. Still silent, he looked out the window only to pause once he saw his reflection.
His once bright and golden locks were now changed to a darkened black. It was there at that moment that his memories of yesterday came back to him in full throttle.
Just the mere thought of him being thrilled of the thought of fighting and/or killing people almost made his stomach do a filp. And then came the image of the man he sliced in two.
A queasy feeling went through him as he immediately held his mouth, ran over to a nearby trashcan and barfed in it.
As he got up, he stopped to hear footsteps heading right towards the door.
His survival instincts kicking in, he quickly grabbed his stuff.
The two soldiers went in the room only to see that it was completely dark, the only source of light was the window parted open for the two of them to see.
"He got away."
Warning! There’s a little gorey part in this chapter, but don’t worry it’s pretty quick. I’m not that good with gore so this is the only time you’ll see it.
“Brother! Brother, wake up!” Edward stirred from his sleep to find himself standing in the middle of a blank void with Alphonse standing before him.
“A-Al?” The young Elric smiled in response while Edward beamed with pure joy. “Al-“
To his horror, his eyes grew wide as he felt his arm pierce his chest, rendering him speechless as he held his brother’s beating heart inside his palm.
“Why?” He slowly glanced at the tearful look in his blank golden eyes with blood trickling down his mouth. “Why did you do this to me, Brother?”
He choked in his own tears before letting out a loud scream.
Edward woke up with sweat going down his face before looking out the train window to see the familiar pastures before him.
So this is what you meant, huh? Rage said with a hint of interest.
“Yeah.” Ed repiled with a smile. “This is the place where it all started. I bet I don’t have to explain it to you since you can see my memories.”
Silence echoed in between the two until he decided to break it. Hey. About that dream you had earlier....
“Hey look. We’re here.” Rage frowned in frustration as the blond got off of the train. Oi! You can’t just ignore me like that! He growled at the ignorant alchemist. You can’t just run away from what’s bothering you. Sooner or later, we’re going to go crazy again except this time you won’t be able to hold yourself back.
After all, you don’t want to hurt the ones you love, right?
Edward’s stroll came to a stop while Rage put two and two together and froze. ...That’s what happened, didn’t it?
The homunculus grew silent for a moment. Look. I’m sorry that I brought it up, it’s just-
Suddenly, a burning pain surged through their body like a bolt of lightning striking down on a tree. Quickly yet excruciatingly painful. Edward desperately gasped for air as his teeth began to grow and sharpen over time.
He fell to his knees while the pain started to decrease little by little.
Dang it...That hurt even more than the last time... Are you alright, Edward?
"Yeah...” He muttered before getting up. “But we have to move quickly...before we lose control-“ The young teen clutched his head as the barbaric urge for bloodshed began to kick in. Edward fell to his knees, fighting to maintain his sanity before losing consciousness.
Out of nowhere, another feeling also began to rise. But this time it was...different. It was a bit rough around the edges, but as he delve on deeper, the more warm and gentler it got.
Then in the middle of that warmth, Ed faintly heard the sound of a heartbeat. Soon, the heartbeat was joined with another before slowly merging together in harmony.
Outside, the wind was howling in the middle of the night as the unconscious body stirred before slowly getting up on its own.
How long were they been lying there? The homunculus thought while they brushed off the dust from their clothes. And where were they going to?
They didn’t have to find out the answer for long once they saw the sign up ahead. Resembool.
A nostalgic and light feeling went through their mind as they examined it. They had the sinking feeling that they were supposed to be there, but why?
Flashes of fond memories came to them like a slideshow. There were various ones with a older women, a dog, and a girl in them or a young woman with a slightly taller man beside her. But the most frequent ones were with a young boy who looked very similar to him yet different at the same time.
That name still fresh within their mind, they set out to find him.