Alchemy makes a lot of things possible.
Want to repair what's broken? Turn water into wine? Craft a grand structure straight from the earth itself? Alchemy is the answer.
Edward Elric was very skilled in this craft. People recognized him for that. Respected him for that.
He wanted you to feel the same way about him. To look at him in awe, admire him.
Yet...your eyes were focused on someone else. Someone he would have been happier for you to ignore. It would have been far easier that way.
Alphonse. His little brother Al...
Yes, they were brothers, sure. But everyone had their limits...
If only alchemy could have easily solved that problem too...
Then again. Perhaps it could.
“I can't believe you turned me down...and all so you could be with this walking hunk of garbage!”
“Ed...” you breathed out in shock. The short blonde had called you both down to his alchemy lab in the middle of the night, and you'd foolishly assumed he was up to something noble in this candlelit place. Yet the dimness only gave way to furious golden eyes when you both arrived, piercing through you like finely crafted spears.
The 'Full Metal Alchemist' as he was dubbed had his gloved hands clenched tight by his sides, teeth grit and grinding. It wasn't that unusual to see him get angry (especially when people made note of his height) but for him to be turning so cruelly on Al was...unheard of. You'd only ever seen them as loving brothers, conflict rarely happened between them.
For Edward to call him a name like that, knowing the pain it caused him to be trapped as a suit of talking armor...that was only a clear sign that something wasn't right.
“A-are you tired Ed? I think you should get some rest, you're agitated.” you tried to reason with him, not wanting him to go any further with the vitriol and end up regretting it once his head cleared. Yet somehow you got the feeling he wouldn't be changing his mind...
“Brother, why did you-?”
“Call you that? Heh...” Ed cut him off easily and let out a dry chuckle, shaking his head and closing his eyes with a furrowed brow. His tense expression twitched. “What, do you think you don't deserve it after all you've done?”
“What did I do!?” Al stepped forth with a heavy clank, half-shielding you with his large body, and Ed's eyes only flashed open again as he snapped:
“What did you do!? You took [Y/N] from me, that's what you did!!!”
Before either of you could protest he suddenly slammed his palms together, filling the room with blue light as he then let them plummet against the ground.
“[Y/N] look out!” Al gasped and quickly stepped in-front of you completely, yet the surge hadn't taken either of you for a target. Rather it shot behind you both and hit the wall with a boom.
Once there was a door there, the only door in and out of this basement room. Yet it suddenly vanished and simply became brick. When you saw this you panicked and quickly ran up to the now solid surface, slapping your palms against it in confusion.
“Brother what are you-- AHH!”
Al's scream made you turn quickly again and you gasped with shock when you saw what was happening. Ed was...attacking him.
His own brother.
He made vicious swipes with his sharpened metal arm and Al clumsily tried to dodge. All the while Ed yelled and screamed at him in anger:
“Thought you could take her away from me!? Butter her up nicely by spending all that time with her!?”
“Brother no!! Stop this!!!”
Ed ignored him, murderous.
“How could she fall in love with someone who doesn't even have a body!?”
The air turned so thick you could have choked. Hearing Ed say those things...it was sickening. Like he wasn't even the same person anymore.
“I'LL TURN YOU INTO SCRAP METAL!”
Ed really intended to. He lunged for Al, not caring how thick that armor was. He'd beat him down until there was nothing left.
That was his plan at least, until you stepped in at the last second, the shock finally passing enough to let you rush forth and step between them.
He did. Just in time before that sharp blade met your neck. Ed's eyes went even wider, pupils somehow getting even smaller still.
“...What are you...doing?”
“Stopping you! He's your brother, how could you treat him this way!?”
Slowly, Ed's posture began to relax, and pain bled into his expression. He lowered his metal arm until it hung limply by his side, reverting back to its usual state. His eyes stared ahead at you, but they didn't look so menacing now. Just hurt.
“I...I don't know what came over me...” he slowly started sinking until he was on his haunches, eyes drifting to the ground. “I was so...angry...”
Behind you Al finally managed to steady himself using the wall, clearly startled. Even if Ed might not have succeeded in hurting him, it had still been horribly painful. For you too. You looked down at the boy sorrowfully and slowly lowered yourself to his level. Something odd was going on here, you had to understand it.
“Ed...what happened? Why are you so angry with Al?” you asked him in a soft tone, as if he were some frightened animal you didn't want to scare off. He certainly looked traumatized.
“I...I don't know...” his eyes remained fixated on the ground, “I wanted us to spend more time together...you and me, but...seemed like you always wanted to be with him instead...”
You swallowed thickly and glanced aside. It wasn't entirely untrue.
Despite his current state, you were able to see past it. Al was so gentle and kind in his ways, not nearly as temperamental as his elder brother. It was something that drew you to him given that you had a similar nature. That wasn't to say you didn't like Ed...it was just that...your feelings for Al were different.
“...Ed...I'm really sorry. I never intended to hurt you or push you this far, I didn't even realize you felt this way.” you told him, bowing your head a little. Yet he only shook his:
“No-” he looked up at you again, “-I'm the one who should be apologizing. It's because of me, my own jealousy, it's all my fault! Please-” his hands clasped together firmly in a praying gesture, “-forgive me! [Y/N], Al!”
“I-I forgive you brother...just please don't...don't attack me again.” Al spoke weakly in the background, stepping a little closer now that the coast seemed clear. You nodded too.
“Of course. We can just move on from this. It's alright Ed.”
He grinned at you both, and he really looked like his old self again. Cheerful, chipper little Ed.
Yet suddenly that grin became a little too wide, and those eyes stopped squinting to reveal that the gold had practically vanished into the white. Eyes that looked up at you both and never blinked.
A furious gaze again.
Followed by a furious gesture, as Ed's palms came apart and slammed on the ground before him. The whole room shook and cracked. You recoiled as the blue blinded you, and you only heard one thing as you were sent tumbling backwards.
It was Al. Screaming.
“Hmm hmm hmm~ Oh! This'll be useful...”
“I could probably grind this piece up and mix it into something...yeah...”
Your head was throbbing a bit, but not to the extent that you couldn't force your eyes open. The real world greeted you again after what felt like a slumber far too long. Blinking a few times, you attempted to focus your vision, while simultaneously trying hard to recall what had happened.
Surely that had been a dream, right? After all, why would Ed ever hurt his brother? He cared about him more than anything else in the world, didn't he?
Slowly you sat up, pressing your hands to the bench beneath you and looking over. The first thing that surprised you was your surroundings. The flickering candles on the stone walls, tables piled high with books and supplies, every surface painted in crimson, white and black transmutation circles.
Wait...so you actually were in the basement?
Had that not all been a dream?
“...two of these...three...”
“...Ed?” you could hear his voice, and when you looked over you could see him busying himself with something at one of the tables. Hunched over in his red cloak, gloved hands fidgeting and working away. Tentatively you got up off the bench you'd been left lying on and approached him with still shaky and weakened legs. Surely the rest of it had been something you'd only imagined, right?
If only that were the case. You soon realized it wasn't when you reached the table.
At first it seemed like Ed was working away on something normal. Just a few pieces of metal and such, nothing strange about that, right?
...If only indeed.
A hollow helmet stared back at you. The one part of Al's body that Ed hadn't set to work deconstructing yet, though his torso was coming along nicely. The seal of crusted blood inside was long buffed away.
Lacking the energy to scream, you could only clamp your hands to your mouth and let out a horrified squeal. That was enough to alert him though, and Ed suddenly spun halfway in his chair to look around at you.
“Oh! [Y/N], I didn't realize you were awake. Sorry...”
There it was again. That heinous grin.
“Guess I got distracted.”
Stumbling backwards, you only shook your head repeatedly, hardly able to comprehend what you were seeing, what was actually happening here. All you truly knew was that you had to get out before you ended up dismantled on that table too...or worse.
You looked frantically for the door. There wasn't one.
Then...it had really all happened after all.
“[Y/N], you're not thinking of leaving are you?” Ed gradually rose from his chair and started coming towards you, reaching out with one hand. It was covered in oil but it might as well have been blood.
“Don't be silly. Come here.”
“No, GET AWAY FROM ME!” you suddenly screeched and shoved him back hard in the chest before he could get too close. He stumbled, and you took your chance to try and run, somewhere, try and grab, anything, try and do, something.
Agony made you stop. Your neck suddenly seized and broke out in a burning flush of searing pain, making you scream and stumble until you dropped straight upon the ground. Falling over your own feet, your knees were grazed by the stone as you smacked down against it, lying limply and twitching.
“...I guess I should have mentioned it's not possible...”
Ed's voice spoke calmly, and you picked up on his footsteps echoing across the floor towards you.
“Even if I brought the door back you still wouldn't get very far with that collar on your neck.”
Eyes widening, you at least managed to lift a trembling hand and touch it. Sure enough, you found metal there in place of skin, just below your chin. Tears welled.
“It was pretty handy having so much metal to work with. Didn't take me long to make that for you.”
“Of course I added my own little alchemist's touch to make sure it had a kick to it.”
“Don't worry! It won't kill you. Just a little shock, that's not so bad is it?”
I have to get out of here!
Everything seemed so futile now but you still tried to pull yourself along the floor, reaching out with weakened hands and digging your nails into the dirty cracks between the stone slabs. You didn't get far before something suddenly slammed down on your spine though, making you wheeze and freeze up.
Ed stepped on you firmly and eyed you like a bug.
“Now come on [Y/N]. Play fair or I'll get mad.”
“...Y...You killed him! Your own brother!” you finally spoke up through a sob, and Ed let out a heavy sigh. The sole of his boot forced you over on your back, and you lay there weakly beneath it, looking up into his cold yellow eyes.
“You say that like it's a bad thing...”
Ed smirked twistedly and tilted his head a little too far towards his shoulder.
“Come on [Y/N], think about it! He was a sentient suit of armor, he wasn't even human anymore. Sure, he could talk and think like one, but let's be real here. Falling in love with someone like that is pointless...”
While you were still stunned he slowly started to lower himself, still seeming bigger than you even when he came to a stop. You whimpered and turned your head when he slipped off his dirtied glove and reached down for you with his mechanical hand. His metallic fingers only pinched your cheeks tightly and forced your eyes upon him again.
“Can't you feel this, [Y/N]?” he questioned and felt you shudder beneath his touch as his cold metal thumb ran over your warm lower lip. “It's not comfortable, is it? It doesn't feel loving, does it?”
None of this feels loving!
“That's all you'd ever get with him...” Ed spoke in an almost melancholy manner, and his eyes became hooded as his other hand approached. You whimpered softly as his bare, soft palm caressed your other cheek, and his human-skinned digit graced your mouth instead. “But with me it's different. With me you'll get exactly what you need. That's why you should have chosen me all along.”
Both hands grasped your cheeks tightly now, and his lips came down and met your own, plusher than anything Al could have ever provided. You squirmed and moaned into his mouth as he forced that kiss upon you, and it only made him do it deeper, spurring him on.
Ed's knee came slipping between your legs and you squeaked in a muffled tone, writhing harder. He pressed his chest flush enough with yours that you could have choked, his red cloak falling over the both of you like some kind of tent, shielding you from the world.
Only trapping you further together.
His breath came out shaky when he pulled away, sickening expression rising into the lamplight again as he licked his lips. His hands slipped from your cheeks to your arms and pinned you by them, not that you could get up anyway. Thanks to that collar, you wouldn't be doing anything he didn't approve of.
Ed looked down at you in delirium. Your tears. Your perfect, pretty face. The way you whimpered and trembled when he touched you and spoke to you in such a low, callous tone. The knowledge that your complete and utter obedience to him and his undying love would come soon enough.
Not even alchemy could create something so perfect.