|The Pen is Mightier! (penismightier) wrote in chaotic_library,|
@ 2011-04-30 19:55:00
|Entry tags:||alfons heiderich, edward elric, fma, fma: anime, fma: post-anime, heid x ed, pg-13, post-series, short story, slash, yuuo, yuuo: fma|
[Edward Elric/Alfons Heiderich; PG-13] A Soft Word Turneth Away Wrath
Character/Series: Edward Elric; Alfons Heiderich; Fullmetal Alchemist (original)
Notes: Written for emilie_burns.
Title: A Soft Word Turneth Away Wrath
Word Count: 1190
Summary: "What the hell did you call me?!"
"Your smile looks like heaven, but your eyes hold a storm about to brew."
-The Beautiful South
"What the hell did you call me?!"
Edward grabbed the other bar patron by the front of his shirt, slamming him roughly against the wall. Alfons cringed at the sound of the patron's head smacking against wood, and reluctantly put a hand on Edward's shoulder. "Edward, let it go," he pleaded.
Edward's temper, however, was riled, and he shoved away Alfons's hand, and in the same swift motion, brought his artificial fist up into the poor man's face.
"You goddamned foreigner!" the man shouted, then snorted a bloody nose, trying to keep the blood from leaking down his face. "I called you short, you damn crippled freak of nature!"
Edward's fist flew a few more times, knocking the man clear out of his grip and to the floor, his face smashing soundly against the wooden planks. The man sat up and spat out a tooth, then tried to lurch to his feet, only to topple back to the floor.
Alfons cringed as Edward's teeth ground together, lips curled back in an animal snarl, blood on the artificial skin of his false hand. It felt like something out of a bad novel, Edward seemed barely human, dark clouds and lightning flashing in his eyes. "Call me a cripple again and I'll kill you," he growled, and Alfons was certain no normal human could make that noise.
The man tried again to get to his feet, and this time, a couple other patrons, grabbed his shoulders. "For God's sake, Franz, stay down," one of them told the man. "Nobody wins against that one, you've seen it yourself."
"I'm not going to be beaten by a foreigner!" the man shouted, glaring murder in Edward's direction.
Edward didn't seem to notice or care, turning away and downing the last swallow of his beer. "Come on, Alfons, let's go." 'Unless you really want to stay,' his tone said. Alfons didn't care to stay without Edward for protection. They were known in this beer hall; the research team always came here, and it seemed like more and more, Edward got into fights here. He couldn't help but wonder how much longer before they were kicked out.
He also wondered how long before bitter losers started the dreaded 'they're homosexuals' rumors about them, given that they roomed together.
He followed Edward silently, watching the older man's body language for signs that it was safe to speak up again. Edward stalked like a predator down the street just ahead of him, and Alfons could practically see the smoke coming out of his ears. He was undoubtedly still red-faced with anger. Nothing pissed off Edward more than calling him a cripple. He took it personally, and he'd explained once that it was less because of pride and more because nobody understood what the sacrifice of his limbs had meant.
Alfons hadn't been sure what Edward had meant by 'sacrifice'. He was too young to have served in the war. And no matter how far he let his imagination run, Alfons could not find a realistic scenario in which Edward would lose all of his right arm and most of his left leg in a 'sacrifice'. And Edward never explained.
"Edward?" Alfons knew he should wait. In fact, if he were smart, he'd keep his mouth shut until sometime tomorrow, when Edward finally cooled off. Edward's temper terrified him, even if it'd never been turned on him beyond the occasional snippy word. Which was always followed by a sullen apology, like Edward was incapable of getting and staying mad at Alfons.
But he could stay mad at anyone else forever and a day, it seemed like.
"What?" Edward snapped, then sighed. "Sorry." There again, with the immediate apologies. Alfons didn't know what to make of his temperamental boyfriend. The man was like a thunderstorm, looming angrily, with loud noises and dangerous strikes. And yet Alfons could stand out in the storm and be perfectly safe and dry.
"Have you ever considered just ignoring them when they get like that, Edward? They're only trying to goad you into a fight," Alfons told him. "One of these days, we're going to get kicked out of there."
"I am not short," he snapped, then sighed again. "Sorry. I just. I've put up with that shit all my life, Alfons. I'm sick of it. I'm stronger, smarter and better than nearly every damn one of those people and I constantly get underestimated because of my height. It's bullshit."
Well, never let it be said that Edward suffered from ego problems. His self-esteem, by contrast, was buried six feet under, but his ego was the size of Germany herself.
Alfons let it rest until they'd returned to the apartment, where Edward tossed his coat onto the couch with more force than necessary, still clearly angry.
The blond in question turned to Alfons, and smiled reassuringly. The smile made Alfons reel- it was dazzlingly bright, a golden sun shining in his living room. But his eyes still held the promise of a violent storm. His temper hadn't abated, but he was trying to cover it up for Alfons.
Alfons was entirely ill-equipped to deal with Edward's temper. "Never mind," he said. "We should head to bed. Sleep off the beer. You'll feel better in the morning."
The thunderclouds broke apart then, scattering to the wind, leaving behind something raw and aching, a dying sunset, red on the horizon. "Is- ... mind if... ah hell, never mind," Edward stuttered, then turned away.
"I'm tired, Edward," Alfons told him, understanding the unstated request. Edward didn't want to sleep alone, and while Alfons had no problem sharing his bed, Edward tended to have no self-control when it came to his hormones, which always ran high when his temper had been unleashed.
For the span of several heartbeats, Edward stood perfectly still, not turning to face him, barely breathing, it looked like. "That's fine," he finally said. "Good night, Alfons. Sleep well."
With that, he left, leaving Alfons with an uncomfortable rock in his stomach. He knew the look that would be on Edward's face about now, a broken, lonely, desperately homesick look, and Alfons always felt like Judas kissing Christ on the cheek when that look crept up on Edward's face because of something he said.
Alfons retreated to his room, changing for bed, then waited about fifteen minutes before heading down the hall to Edward's room, praying it wasn't locked. Fortunately, it wasn't, and Alfons crept in to find Edward curled up in bed, on top of the covers, still fully clothed.
Well, so he'd be a little cold tonight. Alfons walked over to the bed and laid down on it, curling up against Edward's back. "Sleep, Edward," he whispered quietly as Edward lifted his head. "I'll still be here in the morning."
Edward settled back down, pressing back against Alfons silently. Alfons kissed the back of his neck, then flopped an arm over Edward's waist. After a few minutes, Edward's breath evened off in sleep.
For now, the storm had passed, leaving a quiet night in its wake. Alfons settled in to sleep.