Rating: Fairly soft R
Disclaimer: I don't own FMA or it's characters and all that jazz.
Author's Note: cryogenia has corrupted me, it would seem. I don't think I've had so much fun writing :Fail in all of ever. Most of this is her fault, just for the record. She gives amazing suggestions and kept me from failing in the bad sort of way, I think. \o/
He still remembered the first time he’d realized Ed was rather attractive. They’d been at a café and the waitress wouldn’t stop looking at him like he was some sort of dessert. Ed had been happily oblivious, right up until Alfons had pointed it out.
Then he blushed, an endearing shade of crimson that stretched across his cheeks and down, disappearing into the collar of his shirt.
It wasn’t really fair, Alfons decided. The things that ought to have made him less attractive, just… didn’t. It might have been more off putting if his insanity was not mostly harmless and entirely entertaining. After all, Edward Elric could spin stories like no other, and there was never a dull moment in his presence. That he insisted they were real only made the situation funnier.
Everything about Edward was funny, really. It was as if he either didn’t notice other people, or just didn’t care. If he thought something was wrong, nothing would sway his belief, and it was very difficult to make him shut up. It wasn’t his drive that was weird, but he picked the strangest things to take issue with.
There was a girl in one of their physics classes. He never would have noticed until she spoke up with the solution to a problem. There were irritable murmurs, and he really didn’t know if they were mostly shock that a girl knew the answer, or irritation at being shown up by “the fairer sex”. Ed seemed entirely somewhere else, right up until the point another student had said she was wrong and that she should go home and get back in the kitchen where she belonged. He’d never seen anyone move that fast… or that loudly.
Only Ed would get himself kicked out of class for a complete stranger. Only Ed would get kicked out of class and laugh it off like it was nothing. How did he expect to get anywhere if he treated getting thrown out like a game? It was so rash and irresponsible. Still… he had to admit that Ed had done something a little bit noble. Alfons couldn’t help but admire his tenacity.
It appeared though, that despite standing up for that particular girl, he was not anymore fond of that gender than his own. They walked together through the streets of downtown Munich, no particular destination in mind. It was a beautiful day, and even Ed, who was quite prickly more often than not, seemed in good spirits.
Alfons didn’t know the name of the girl. He never had the chance to learn it. She’d walked up to them, eyeing him up and down in what he guessed was meant to be a flirtatious manner. He was surprised at first, that it was him she spoke to and not Edward. He’d always thought Ed was handsome in somewhat of a rebellious way, with his odd gold eyes, and long ponytail that never really allowed him to blend in. Most people, though, seemed to regard it simply as strange, and it appeared the girl was no different.
Alfons, smiled at her as she spoke, feigning a friendliness he didn’t really feel. It wasn’t that she wasn’t pretty. It was just that he ached for the hurt Ed had to be feeling as she stared sidelong at him, lips pursing in distaste. Besides, she was probably attractive if one was interested in girls, but he was honestly more interested in Edward. Still, there were appearances to keep…
Ed had no such qualms. Alfons was torn between amusement and mortification at the way his companion openly glared at the girl. He watched Ed’s lips twitch, emotionless for a split second, dipping down in fractions until he looked truly angry.
“Look, it’s been nice talking, but we really have to go,” Ed announced finally, grabbing Alfons wrist and stalking away before he’d even really registered what was going on. Didn’t Ed understand that you didn’t do that sort of thing? Honestly, nothing of what was acceptable and wasn’t even seemed to register to his room mate.
Still, if she’d hurt his feelings that badly, he supposed he could suspend his own embarrassment this once. “I’m sorry about back there. She was rather cruel to you…”
Ed turned to look at him, eyebrow raised, and very obviously perplexed. “She what?”
“Weren’t you upset about the looks she was giving you? I thought… that was why we left.”
Ed blinked once, twice, cheeks flushing brightly under his bangs, and it was immensely confusing. Really, hurt feelings were nothing to be embarrassed about. Ed snorted though, shaking his head.
If Edward had apparently not even noticed how she’d treated him, what was Edward up in arms about? Alfons wished that Ed would act normal for a change, just so he could figure out what was going on in his head for once.
Even their research team didn’t fail to notice Ed’s… oddities. When either he or Ed were around, it was kept to gentle ribbing, that Ed was very dedicated, and he supposed he got their point. After all, once Edward was buried in a book, the only person he even bothered responding to was Alfons. It didn’t make it sting less, though, the things they said when they thought he was out of earshot. He wanted to correct them, to tell them there was more to the workaholic they had come to know, who only held conversations with them if it involved the rockets they meant to build. He wanted to tell them that Ed’s exception made for him had nothing to do with sucking up. Unfortunately, he was at a loss for words to defend his room mate. After all, he didn’t understand Edward himself.
Perhaps if he could just get Ed to socialize more, something not work related, he might relax a bit. That would show them that Edward was actually rather enjoyable to be around, and maybe then Ed would make some actual friends.
Ed was stretched out on the couch, back pressed to Alfons’ shoulder, his nose in a book, when the idea struck him. He was loathe to speak for a moment. As disconcerting as Ed’s lack of understanding about personal space was, Alfons couldn’t deny how ridiculously nice it felt to be this close. In the end, that was what forced his hand. Ed was strange in his own ways, but he couldn’t possibly feel this, and it was better to forget the whole thing than to blurt it out now and risk being turned away.
He suggested hanging out with the rest of their research team, at the beer hall because that, at least, would tear Ed away from his books. He wasn’t sure if Ed caught the rush in his voice, desperate to find the words before he did something else. Even in his haste, though, he did not miss the jerk of Ed’s shoulders, as his body tensed against Alfons’.
“What would I want to do that for?” Ed asked warily. He was still facing away from Alfons, but Alfons could practically hear the scowl on his face.
“Come on, it’ll be fun,” Alfons prodded hopefully.
“They talk too much,” Ed complained.
“You know, we’re not going there to research. Their talking won’t interrupt your reading.”
“I was actually enjoying reading,” Ed replied tersely, but he set his book aside with a defeated sigh.
Going out, in the end, turned out to be something of a disaster. It wasn’t that Ed was doing anything wrong. Really, he wasn’t doing much of anything, and that was mostly the problem. He spoke when spoken to, and once or twice even joined in the conversation of his own volition, but mostly Ed seemed more interested in his beer than his company. He was sullen and quiet, as if even in the company of people he saw nearly every day, he was utterly alone.
It was only when they left that he brightened up, though Alfons wasn’t sure it was happiness so much as relief to be going home where he could hole himself up away from the world again. It was making it a little bit hard to believe he’d ever make Ed understand the way things were done here.
Social norms did not seem to be Ed’s strong suit in any situation, to be honest. He got along with officer Hughes and Gracia well enough, though he seemed to take great pleasure in teasing Hughes. Who in their right mind taunts a police officer, even in jest? He was friendly enough to be tolerated, and even liked sometimes, but Alfons was sure he didn’t even know any of their other classmates’ names. After the beer hall incident, he wasn’t even sure Ed had bothered to learn the names of the rest of their research team. All he cared about was science, as if the people that surrounded him were no more than props. Perhaps he wasn’t human at all.
Then again, sometimes he was sweet, in… weird, offhanded ways. He’d talked Gracia into teaching him how to bake once, in an attempt to make Alfons a birthday cake. It tasted a little weird, and resulted in what could only be described as a flour explosion, but it was vaguely cake shaped, frosted, and covered in candles.
It occurred to Alfons to ask what had possessed Ed to make a cake in the first place. Butter was expensive as is, and it just seemed frivolous. The moment he asked, though, he wished he hadn’t. Ed looked a little insulted at first, and then hurt, and muttered something about it being what his mom had always done. Alfons had never felt so bad that someone else was apologizing for something before that moment.
Alfons seemed to the be the exception to Ed’s “people do not really exist unless they make me angry” rule, though he suspected it was just because he listened to his insane room mate ramble on about this or that equation for hours on end Even if that was all they talked about, at least Ed would hold a conversation with him. Still, Ed very nearly treated him like some sort of mixed up family.
Even if not for the fact that his obvious insanity should have been enough to cool Alfons’ attraction, certainly his physical oddities should have.
Edward’s artificial limbs were carefully covered in a waxy sort of substance, easy to ignore in passing. Even the ones that weren’t, that should have made him look inhuman and perverse, only lent themselves to being a part of what he was. Ed should have been some sad, broken boy, Alfons thought, but he wasn’t. It was just part of his charm.
Once he’d noticed the first time, it was hard not to keep noticing. Somewhere in the time they’d moved in together, he’d come to the conclusion that Ed was clearly not entirely in possession of his mental faculties. That realization only made the fact that he also thought that Ed was somewhat irresistible more ridiculous.
It didn’t really matter, he supposed. Ed was painfully oblivious to any hints he gave about liking his room mate, just like he was to everything else.
That wasn’t entirely true. Ed did seem to notice things. They were just usually the things Alfons was hoping he wouldn’t notice.
If Ed’s failures at human interaction weren’t enough, then there were his stories. They were fantastic, outlandish things, and anyone who would give him the benefit of the doubt in regards to his sanity was forced to give up at that point. Even Alfons could not believe in a world where alchemy was the primary form of science. If only he could get Ed to tell him the truth of where he’d come from, to stop hiding behind tales of another world that couldn’t possibly exist.
“And that’s how the Alchemist of the People put the town of Youswell back in the hands of the people who lived there,” Ed finished brightly.
Alfons sighed, laughing in spite of himself. Whatever else he might be, Edward was an amazing story teller.
“Why don’t you ever write these down? You could be an author you know.”
“You still don’t believe me, do you?” Ed pouted, and really, it was an adorable sort of pout that made Alfons wish he could reach out and touch it.
“Oh, I finished the drawings for that schematic,” Alfons said, hoping it would be enough to change the subject. Story teller though Ed might be, an artist he was definitely not.
“Really?” Ed’s eyes lit up, shining in the dim light of the apartment. He leaned impatiently over Alfons as he grabbed them from the coffee table.
“These are perfect,” Ed exclaimed. “We’ll have a working prototype in no time.”
“Well, they were your dimensions and all,” Alfons replied.
“Yeah but… but this is great. I could almost kiss you right now,” Ed announced with a grin. He was close, so very close and Alfons could feel warm air on his neck, pressure around his shoulders as his room mate leaned on him.
“I…” He was not going to kiss Ed. Was not.
“What’s wrong? Your face is all red,” Ed pointed out.
“No…nothing,” Alfons smiled weakly.
“You sure? You don’t look so good.” Ed leaned closer, his nose almost touching Alfons’ as if a closer inspection would reveal whatever the problem was. Only his false hand pressed into the couch kept Ed from landing entirely in Alfons’ lap.
“I’m fine,” Alfons insisted. Did Ed have no sense of personal space? It was a little startling, the way he seemed to think absolutely nothing of casual contact, of sitting right next to Alfons sometimes, and god why did he have to be so close and… oblivious.
“You people are all crazy,” Ed muttered finally.
Where had that come from?
“Crazy?” Since when was he crazy? Ed was the one claiming to be from another planet or something…
“I…” Ed’s nose was touching his and golden eyes glared darkly, accompanied by a frown Alfons couldn’t see, but knew was there.
“What on earth are you talking about?”
“Nothing makes sense around here at all!” Ed insisted, looking very nervous for a split second. Then he let go of his hold on the couch, plopping gracelessly into Alfons’ lap.
“I keep trying, but everything here is just weird and you don’t ever get it, do you?” Ed asked, his voice a soft whine, with pleading eyes inches from Alfons’.
“Oh for crying out loud,” Ed growled. He grabbed Alfons’ jaw, gently if a bit clumsily, pressing a sloppy kiss to his lips. It was fleeting and over almost before it began, but Ed panted roughly when he pulled away, probably more out of embarrassment than anything.
“Do you get it now?” he asked grumpily.
Alfons’ mind was reeling. All that time, and was this why he’d acted so strangely?
“Oh.” The moment the word left his lips, Alfons wished he’d thought of something, anything else to say.
Ed looked irritated and a little bit sad, his jaw set harshly as he shoved himself from Alfons’ lap. “God, just forget it.”
“Wait,” Alfons called, but Edward was already stalking off towards his bedroom Alfons shook his head and took off after him.
“Would you wait a minute?” he grumbled, grasping Ed’s wrist as he reached the door to his room.
“For what? What the hell am I supposed to be doing? I don’t… oh fuck it all,” Ed hissed, trying to tug his wrist from Alfons’ fingers.
Why did this have to be so damn difficult? Granted, they were scientists, and that sort of conversation was easy, while this was rather painful at best, but couldn’t they at least make themselves understood?
In the end, Edward yanked his wrist free, Alfons lost his balance, and they both went tumbling to the floor with a heavy thud. Alfons found his face buried against Ed’s neck, and Ed was flailing trying to get free, and he was certain if he didn’t do this now, Ed would be irritated and proud and never give him another chance.
Ed’s neck was warm under his tongue and he could feel a pulse against his mouth. Ed was still flailing, and Alfons barely managed to keep his balance to kiss him, awkward and unsure. Ed’s eyes slid shut, anyway, like he had no idea how bad their kisses were, and then mismatched hands grasped at Alfons’ hair, and Ed was assaulting his mouth, clumsy, but sweet all the same.
Ed was kissing him and Alfons was sure they were both awful at it, but somehow that didn’t matter. It didn’t matter that he’d waited ages for sloppy, terrible kisses, because Ed’s mouth was against his, and Ed’s arms were around him, clinging like if he let go Alfons might run away. It didn’t matter that they were on the floor in the doorway to Ed’s room because Ed was pressing deliciously against him, like they could become one through simple friction.
Ed tugged at Alfons suspenders, muttering curses into his mouth even as the straps were tugged down his arms. Ed’s hands faltered for the briefest of moments, like he was afraid he’d gone too far, but then fingers slid up Alfons’ bare skin, skimming his spine in a parody of something practiced. It melted into more desperate touches, and Ed was rocking his hips.
In retrospect, it probably shouldn’t have drawn such a reaction, but he’d never even kissed another person except for crazy, beautiful, desperate Edward, and right now the frantic movements of Ed’s body rubbing against his own, even through all their clothes, was nothing short of earth shattering.
Clearly, he wasn’t thinking, because there was nothing romantic, or civilized, or right about this, but Ed’s teeth sank roughly into his neck, and he barely stifled the urge to howl at the feel of it. He pressed hard against Ed, who seemed to have taken it upon himself to devour every inch of exposed flesh, and even alone in his room with infinitely more intimate contact, it never felt like this.
“Fuck, oh fuck,” Ed was chanting in choking words, lost to the world. His eyes flew open, and Alfons barely had time to notice, because hands grasped at his hips and Ed’s thrust up against him frantically, in nothing anyone could qualify as rhythmic.
Ed gasped like getting off was an utter surprise. His breath descended into a low, desperate moan, and he clutched at Alfons like a life sized rag doll. Teeth on his neck again, as Ed tried to reel himself in, and the pressure of Ed’s mouth, and the friction of his hips were too much. Light exploded behind his eyes, and that couldn’t be him crying Ed’s name like a lust laden prayer.
“Can’t breathe,” Ed gasped, shoving Alfons off of him enough to catch his breath. He panted and shivered slightly, letting his eyes slip shut as if being in the middle of the floor was completely inconsequential.
It dawned on Alfons, as he returned from the state of bliss he’d happily occupied, that it was the middle of the day. Honestly, who has sex in the middle of the day, with all their clothes on, on the floor? They were no more than seven or eight feet from the bed, and they couldn’t have at least made it that far? He shook his head, trying to ignore the fact that now their clothes would need washing, and if being damp and uncomfortable on the floor wasn’t embarrassing, he didn’t know what was. Clearly, Ed’s particular brand of crazy was contagious, because, looking at the soft, pleased expression on his face, it was hard to care about any of that.
“We…just,” Alfons stammered out, and Ed opened one eye to look at him.
“I…in broad daylight.”
“We live upstairs. It’s not like anyone’s looking in our windows,” Ed snickered.
“On the floor!” Alfons exclaimed.
“It’s our floor. Who cares what we do with it?” Ed asked, looking very confused, as if he had utterly no idea what Alfons was complaining about.
“We’re a mess”
“Who the fuck cares? So we’ll wash our clothes later.”
“Look,” Ed sighed, “If it bothers you, just take them off.”
Alfons blushed furiously. Somehow it was different, now, thinking about being that exposed, even after what they’d done.
“If… you didn’t want to,” Ed began, his voice just above a whisper.
“It’s not that!” Alfons waved his arms to make his point, thinking idly that it was yet another habit he’d picked up from Ed.
“Then why do you keep complaining?”
“It’s just… this is all so weird.” Alfons tried to explain. Why was he having so much trouble making himself understood? Edward was supposed to be the strange one, here, not him.
“Well, if we get used to it, it won’t be so weird. Have to wash our clothes anyway,” Ed insisted, his words contradicting the stark blush across his cheeks.
“But…” Alfons stalled. It wasn’t that he didn’t want. It was just that the idea of being so exposed made him incredibly nervous.
“Fine,” Ed huffed, tugging at his own shirt. It was off in seconds, and only then did Alfons notice his room mate was shaking. It was the only thing that betrayed his nerves, slight tremors as he reached for his belt with his good hand.
“Can we… not here on the floor, okay?” Alfons said, more to break the uneasy silence than anything.
Ed snorted, dropping his hands from his pants. He nodded, though, making his way into the bedroom.
Once there, Ed resumed fumbling with the belt, and Alfons sucked in a shaky breath.
“Can I?” He asked, reaching his hands out.
“I better not be the only one getting naked here,” Ed replied tersely, but he nodded, shivering when Alfons’ fingers skimmed his waist.
Through fumbling fingers and soft curses, they managed to slip from their clothes. It was only when they were both completely naked that Alfons managed the nerve to look up. Ed was blushing, crimson stretching across his cheeks and down his neck. He couldn’t help but notice how different they were. Tanned, scarred flesh, and pasty coated metal limbs contrasted with milky, untouched skin. Ed blinked in something like awe, as if he’d finally forgotten to be embarrassed.
Alfons did no such thing, and had to fight the urge to cover himself with a blanket or a pillow or something. Ed said nothing, and the look on his face was a little disconcerting. It was only when he finally lost his nerve, reaching for the bed sheets that Edward spoke.
“Don’t,” he murmured. Alfons turned around, and Ed had moved closer. He swallowed visibly before reaching out his human hand to cup Alfons’ jaw.
His lips were softer this time, calm and less desperate. They brushed softly over Alfons’, the tip of Ed’s tongue flicking against his mouth experimentally. It was noticeably less bad now that they weren’t scrambling and desperate, and Alfons decided that if this was a part of Edward’s inherent craziness, it wasn’t such a bad thing to catch.