Fandom: Fullmetal Alchemist
Title: But Everyone Loves Roy Mustang...
Available here on Ao3
“You get a lot of hate mail. Did you know you?” Ed shifted through another stack, weeding out letters about actual political issues and the—far fewer—fan letters. “I mean, a lot.”
Roy shrugged. “Why do you think I keep putting off general elections? I don’t want to be giving a speech in some backwoods town and have a crazy old man shouting at me about,” he waved a hand. “I don’t even know. Electricity prices.”
“Electricity prices are high.”
“Don’t start. Just sort the mail and leave me in peace.”
“I thought it would be a lot more exciting to be an Advisor to the Fuhrer. How bad do you think it would look for your administration if I quit?”
Roy hummed, leaning his chin on his hand and stared out the window. You could put the lazy bastard in the highest office in the land, but you couldn’t apparently make him do any fucking work. “Pretty bad. I’d probably be better off firing you. Did you know Hughes already has a press release for when it happens?”
“I’m not surprised.” He got to the bottom of the last pile. “Here you go. All the mail that’s fit to read, and nothing your sensitive eyes have to worry about.”
Roy took his mail, letting his fingers brush against Ed’s. “It’s not my rule. Hughes thinks it’s not good for me to see them.”
“Everyone thinks it’s not good for you to see them. Your Advisors, your doctors, your family, your friends. The press. No one wants to read about how the Fuhrer made a visit to someone who wrote him a crackpot letter. It creeps people out.”
“It was only the one time. And I thought, you know, if we could talk face to face, he might see his feelings were unwarranted.”
Ed sighed and began making notes about security needs based on the letters. “Yeah, I don’t know if you knew this, but the way to make people feel like they’re not living in a police state is to stay out of their houses. Not show up on their doorsteps and tell them their letter is stupid. You have people for this.”
“Yeah, I have people. But you ignore most of the letters.”
“Because they aren’t a threat. I know this is hard to understand, but not everyone loves you. You can’t change everyone’s mind. Suck it up.”
Roy snorted. “I don’t know what you’re talking about. You’ve been at rallies. There are literally throngs of people waiting to see me. I have to wait ten minutes to talk because they keep cheering.” He leaned back in his chair and crossed his legs at the ankle under the desk. "It’s almost embarrassing.”
“Please. The only thing that would embarrass you is,” Ed paused. “Huh. You know what? I actually don’t know what would embarrass you. I was going to say having one of your admirers throw herself at you on stage in front of thousands of onlookers, but, well. We all know exhibitionism is one of your kinks.”
“I don’t know.” Roy closed his eyes and tipped his head back. Apparently it was afternoon nap time. “It might be a little discomfiting when you killed her.”
“You’re the one going through someone else’s mail.” His voice was quiet and he didn’t open his eyes.
Ed began sorting the hate mail—political, angry, angry and dangerous. Hardly anything ever came from the letters. Ed was pretty much an expert when it came to inappropriate displays of impulse control. But it made him feel better to check, it made Hughes feel better and honestly, when they checked these things out, everyone had a better day.
“You really have a gift.” Ed shook his head. “It really takes something special to piss people off over wheat. Not wheat prices, just wheat.” He looked up when Roy didn’t respond and found him sleeping, the lines of worry eased, making him look younger and almost carefree. He looked almost the way he did in the pictures Hughes had before Ishbal. Before loss and fire and war burned it out of him.
Ed stood, collected the letters into a neat pile and tucked them under his arm. He cross the room and brushed a single stray hair that had the audacity to be out of place on Roy’s artfully disheveled head. He placed a soft kiss on the corner of Roy’s mouth and left him to sleep in peace.
Fandom: Fullmetal Alchemist
Title: Winterborn Manor
Available here on Ao3
“You have got to be fucking kidding me.” Ed looked out the window of the car to see the massive, looming manor house sprawling out before them as they turned onto the gravel drive.
“What?” Roy sounded innocently defensive which meant the bastard knew exactly what.
The gravel crunched under the tires of the car as the neared the entrance and Ed thought he might lose his mind if he had to hear it every day. “Really? There are people fucking lining up to great us.”
“I am the Fuhrer.”
“You’re an asshole is what you are. What the fuck would we do with all this space? And all those people living in our,” he paused. “I don’t think you could call it a house. This is a fucking castle. You want to be king next?”
Roy slowed the car to a crawl so as not to spray the idiots standing and waiting for them with tiny, cream colored rocks. Ed didn’t even know where you could find rocks like that in Amestris, the rich bastard who’d built the place probably had them trucked in from Xing or some other fucking god awful and expensive place. Fucking rich people.
Roy’s fake, speaking to a crowd smile was plastered on his face as he waved to the people standing in a perfectly straight line. “I’m just asking you to look. And to not be an ass to the people who work very hard to keep this house in good condition.”
Ed heaved a sigh, pasted on his own smile and joined Roy in the wave. As soon as the car stopped, the first man in line, shorter than all the others and wiry, rushed to open first Roy’s door and then Ed’s.
“Fuhrer, Mr. Elric, it’s an honor to have you visit the manor. I am Mr. Green, the Head Butler.” He gave a deep bow.
Roy shook Mr. Green’s hand. “It’s our pleasure to be here,” Roy lied.
“Shall I show you the house?”
“Please, lead the way.”
They fell into step behind Mr. Green and Ed waited until they had some distance before hissing at Roy. “He didn’t even introduce us to the rest of the people.” Why make them line up in the cold if they didn’t even get to shake the Fuhrer’s hand?
Mr. Green, who after some prompting and a scandalized look gave his first name as Alfred, led them through the, frankly ridiculous, house. The floors were marble, the walls covered in highly burnished wood where it wasn’t covered in ornate and weird paintings. Their footsteps echoed like gunshots as they toured and Ed was pretty sure he could fit all of Risembool comfortably within the walls of this single house.
“How many people does it take to keep this place running?” Roy shot him a look, but it was a legitimate question. The people mostly fucking loved Fuhrer Mustang to the point of tragedy but that didn’t mean there hadn’t been threats. That Ed knew of two assassination attempts that got close enough for two very focused men to be in a prison cell so deep they would never see the light of day. Managing a staff of any size was a concern, living with one brought a whole new bag of trouble to the table.
“We have twenty currently in residence, Sir. All have been with the house for many years.”
“That’s…a lot of people.”
Alfred laughed. “Hardly any to keep this old house running properly. If you were to choose Winterborn Manor for your residence, we’d need at least ten more to keep it in the condition someone of your stature would be used to.”
Ed thought of their cramped little house in a line of other, identical military housing. The wooden floors, while practical, had never been pretty and showed areas of high traffic from generations of military families living the house. The second floor bedroom slanted to the right and there was a draft somewhere in the room that Ed had never been able to fix with plaster or alchemy. The paint, while chip free, was faded and in colors that might have been popular thirty years ago, but wasn’t even made anymore.
It was old and battered, the lawn made him insane and he could count on one finger the number of neighbors he actually liked, but it had been their home for years. It was where they came together as a pair, as two people picking out curtains and fighting over who was going to wash the dishes. They’d fought in every room, and there was really nothing more awkward than a fight in a bathroom. They’d fucked in every room and on every surface. Their ‘I love you’s’ trailed along the drafty hallways.
He’d gotten used to the idea of Roy being Fuhrer; it had been a long haul and they’d fought so hard to get there, that he’d had time to come to terms with it. Moving though, moving was a whole other thing. Ed just sort of assumed that when Roy finally got to the top, he’d be able to run the country from their crappy little kitchen. He couldn’t say that it was the first place he could call home since he burnt town the house in Risembool, but it was the first one that felt like it was his. Even though he didn’t own a single blade of grass or a brick of the frame, it felt like his and this fucking monstrosity didn’t feel like a home. It felt like a mausoleum.
They stopped in the residential wing, the residential wing, and Alfred, to his credit, didn’t so much as raise an eyebrow when Roy asked for a moment alone in one of the master bedrooms.
He walked to one of the expansive windows overlooking the manicured garden pond. “Yeah?”
“What do you think? You were looking a little pale there toward the end.”
Ed was on the verge of shrugging, of asking Roy his opinion, though it was pretty fucking clear Roy would roll around on the floor in glee if he could get away with it. He was nearly ready to capitulate when a flock of swans descended on the pond and a lone gardener came out to shoo them from the flowerbeds. “I think that if you make me live here, I’m going to kill myself.” He turned away from the window and stalked up to Roy, meeting him toe to toe. “I’ve done everything you asked to get you here. I kept my mouth shut about public policy. I kept my head down during civil unrest. I went with you to those god awful fucking functions and stood and talked to the other General’s wives. I helped you overthrow,” he stopped and looked around the room. Anyone could be listening in a house this size. “I helped you in every way. I did every last god damn thing you asked and I think it’s time for me to say enough. If you pick this fucking house, you will be living in it alone.”
Instead of the fit, instead of the uncomfortable silence and hurt gaze, Roy reached out slid his fingers into Ed’s hair to cradle his head, the heat of Roy’s hands spreading warmth across his scalp and down his neck. “All you had to say was no.”
“Oh.” Part word, part relieved sigh, Ed relaxed into Roy’s touch. “Okay. Good.”
Roy grinned at him, then tipped his head to the massive bed. “It’d be a shame to let that go to waste, though, don’t you think?”
Ed thought of Alfred, waiting patiently for their return, he thought of the staff, huddled around the door, listening through the cracks, he thought of the clear evidence of their actives they would leave behind. And he thought of Roy’s easy acceptance of his ultimatum, and how fucking gorgeous he looked in a suit, and a bed nearly the size of their entire bedroom. “It’d be practically fucking criminal.”