FMA fic

Feb. 12th, 2005 12:59 pm
swordage: Greed from Fullmetal Alchemist (x greed)
[personal profile] swordage
Human!Greed entertains me. Also, much, much thanks to [livejournal.com profile] miss_arel for dealing with all my crazy questions and theories, and for letting me molest her Greed-muse. And thanks to [livejournal.com profile] pinstripesuit for being so easy to bribe for fanart. And thanks to Geo for beta'ing Part Zwei. Wow, this is like a group effort.

Title: On Growing (working title Greedzilla)
Series: FMA
Rating: PG-13
Ramifications: Mad crazy spoilers for... Well, pretty much through the end of the series.
Summary: Envy gets a little brother, because he really didn't like the idea of having a father. Yeah, I make it sound like it has nothing to do with Greed.


“Tyrian, if I could introduce you to Nicolaus? Nicolaus, this is my son.” Dante smiled sweetly, and Envy extended a hand to the handsome man beside her with an earnest smile.

“I’m pleased to meet you, sir. I’ve heard naught but praise for you.” It’s an outright lie, of course; Dante had said absolutely nothing about this stranger, simply told him to make himself presentable for her fiancée. Who was, as far as Envy could tell, nothing more than a pompous clothes-horse.

“Please, the pleasure is mine.” He had to admit this Nicolaus had a lovely smile, although he inwardly scoffed at the clear emotions behind it. This man was easier to read than the Bible.

“Would you care for some tea, gentlemen?” Dante asks, and Envy nearly looks around for the other gentleman before catching himself. He watches them interact for a few moments, amused by the discussion of hired help and the lack thereof. The simple matter is that they couldn’t have hired help; too many odd things happen in this house for a servant of any kind.

Once they were settled with their tea, Envy trying not to frown at the casual drape of Nicolaus’ limbs on the settee, the dance of conversation began. Envy whined to himself - he had never liked this, never appreciated the supposed art behind it.

“I’m told you appreciate a fine piece of horseflesh, Tyrian?” The question was innocent enough, but Envy sent a sharp look at Dante.

“Ah, the truth is, I’m not much of a rider. I do my appreciating from the ground,” he confided, not caring if it meshed with Dante’s explanation. He hated horses.

“A man after my own heart.” Nicolaus’ smile was distracting, and Envy smiled a little awkwardly in return. “I prefer to own the race rather than ride in it, myself.”

“You prefer to own everything,” Dante teased with a soft touch on the man’s arm, and Envy felt ill.

“Indeed, so I do!” Nicolaus chuckled. “Ah, that reminds me - I had nearly forgotten. Dante helped choose this for you, you know.”

Envy stared at the small box the other man offered him. Dante coughed a little, pointedly, and he automatically reached out and accepted the thing.

“Since we are to be family,” Nicolaus said casually, as if it were nothing, “I thought it would be a gesture of goodwill between the men of the house.”

“And a splendid idea it is,” Dante purred, arching an eyebrow at Envy’s dark glare.

“Excuse me,” he murmured thickly, “I seem to recall leaving the cellar open. We shouldn’t want to let rats in the house.” He stood, box clenched tightly in one hand, and bowed properly before sweeping out of the room. In the hall, he yanked the tie from his hair and pulled his cravat loose before roughly shredding the delicate twine holding the box closed.

“Please forgive him,” he could hear Dante murmuring, “He’s been a slight cantankerous since his father…”

“Ah, not to worry. I’ll talk to him later. It’s perfectly understandable, with a new man taking the place he’s accustomed to in the house…”

Envy started unblinkingly at the curl of straw-colored hair in the locket. His hands were trembling, he noted distantly. He wasn’t sure if it was from what he held or from restraining the urge to kill the both of them, ignorant and sadistic alike.

“I won’t be bribed,” he growled softly. “Not by you, weak little thing. And I won’t be threatened into submission.”

Nicolaus would expect to see it again, though, and Dante would delight in having a frail, sickly son to coo over in public. Slowly he shifted the chain in his hands, finally lifting it above his head. It felt like a manacle around his neck.

“I won’t…” he whispered, but he couldn’t finish the sentence.


***


Envy froze at the top of the stairs, eyes shocked and wide at the messy sprawl of limbs and gore below. Dante sighed in annoyance - Envy was sure he hadn’t been meant to see this at all, hadn’t been meant to come home so quickly.

“What,” he said softly, “is that?”

“Homunculus,” Dante said succinctly, turning her back on him. “I’m sure you remember this stage of your own growth. I was hoping you were a fluke, but once again I am disappointed.”

Yes, Envy remembered that painful silence, the only sound being the slow throb of his body pulling together into a better shape. He remembered how terrible it was to be so helpless, to stare up at the world and have it stare back in disgust.

He found himself kneeling next to the softly pulsing mass, heedless of the ichors that clung to his legs.

“Shh,” he whispered, running a gentle hand along a misshapen organ. “You’ll be fine. I’ll keep watch until you can take care of yourself, alright? So just concentrate on being you, and it’ll come together.”

He was aware of Dante’s cold presence behind him, and he belatedly remembered that putting her at his back was not the wisest choice. “That thing,” she murmured with thinly veiled annoyance, “was Nicolaus.”

“He isn’t now,” Envy replied with a roll of his eyes, speaking as to a simpleton. “He’s like me.”

“You hate Nicolaus.” Dante carefully picked her way through the spatters of gore to stand over them, glowering like she had when Envy killed the man to begin with.

“He isn’t Nicolaus now.” Envy shook his head at the obvious simplicity she was failing to grasp. “He’s just a little thing. How could I hate something so cute?”

Dante stepped away, lip curling. Envy supposed that to human sensibilities, blood and exposed organs and twisted limbs could only be cause for vomit. He couldn’t help the fuzzy protective feeling, though, and when Dante lashed a sudden kick at the fleshy center of Nicolaus-that-was, he automatically rolled between them, hissing at the feel of a pointed toe between his ribs.

They both glared at each other then, Envy clutching his gut until the ache faded. “Get out of the way,” she said icily. “He must be fed.”

“He has no mouth,” Envy replied sharply. “Let me keep him until he forms one-”

“He doesn’t need a mouth.” Dante gestured to a set of hypodermic needles on her work table, smirking at the look on his face when the hunger lurched deep beneath his breastbone. He hadn’t even noticed the red stones, caught up with the business of protecting this new and helpless thing.

“Let me keep him,” he said softly, eyes riveted on the stones. “Just for a little while.”

“No. Move.” She was already preparing the needles with stone, and Envy cursed her for thinking of this eventuality. His little brother wasn’t ready for the stone yet, needed time to figure out how to deal with the world, all bright and painful and new. He automatically reached back, carefully tangling his fingers with the twitching hand that was slowly creeping towards him.

“I want to keep him.” He tried to sound determined, but Dante just strode past him and plunged a needle into the convulsing red flesh. He flinched at the high-pitched gurgle, twisting to put his arms as far around the newborn creature as he could. He ignored Dante’s amused chuckle, concentrating instead on trying to soothe the pain of red fire burning through its veins.

“It’s okay,” he said desperately over the gurgling scream. “It’s alright, I know there’s a lot all at once but just let it happen, it’ll make you feel good soon, just hold on-”

“Shut up,” Dante hissed, throwing the used needle at him. He cried out softly when it glanced across his shoulder, opening a long cut, although it healed almost instantly. Ignoring her, he bent to press his forehead against a bony extremity, whispering soft words of encouragement as the violent shudders began to fade.

He was vaguely aware of Dante taking notes behind him, muttering to herself about controls and red stone. He didn’t care. It took hours, long and painful and exhausting, before the newborn’s shape began to resemble something human. When it formed a head, Envy settled and cradled it in his lap, gently stroking the blood-slick skull that gradually took on the look of Nicolaus. He was vaguely aware of the light changing, day having turned to night and again to day. He was slightly more aware of Dante’s presence, realizing only when he noticed her that she had left in the first place.

Finally, a whole being was curled in his lap, shivering and trying to curl closer to Envy’s warmth with limbs that were still too new to know what they were being told to do. Envy carefully gathered him close, lifted the lanky body and walked past Dante towards the room that was theoretically his own. He was more relieved than pleased when she let him pass.

He made sure the bath was comfortably warm before levering the other homunculus into it, testing the temperature on his wrist as he once saw a mother do for her infant. The dried blood was carefully wiped away from the freshly-made skin, the dark hair gently smoothed away from still-tender features. Envy winced in sympathy whenever his fingers pressed a little too firmly or tugged too sharply and caused a soft noise of pain. The shivers slowly faded, replaced by a languid lassitude. Convincing his brother to leave the bath was a difficult task, with skin too slick to carry and legs too wobbly to walk. They managed, somehow, and Envy found the softest cloth to buff the water off of pale skin.

“Hush, little baby, don’t say a word…” He hummed quietly, trying to ignore the odd warmth that made his fingers tingle. This was how it should be, to take care of something new and delicate, not abandoning it to the cold and dark-

He only noticed his own snarl when trembling fingers brushed his cheek. He looked up, startled, into worried eyes. Another burst of warmth made him smile reassuringly.

“It’s nothing,” he murmured. “Not mad at you. C’mon, I bet you’re tired. You can have my bed, I hardly sleep anyway, and I’ll make sure nothing bad happens, alright? Now take a step, just like that.”

The walk down the hall to his room was a painfully long one at that pace, but he didn’t mind. He just gently tucked the blankets around broad shoulders and only belatedly realized that he should really get some of Nicolaus’ sleep clothes. Or any clothes, really. He adjusted the pillows slightly and said softly, “I’ll be right back, okay? Gonna get you something to wear when you get up.”

He was jerked short as he turned to the door, though, by a firm grip on his hair. He twisted around, torn between worry and anger, but felt it all diffuse when he saw the look in those narrow eyes. The hand in his hair tugged carefully, pulling him closer, and brushed a curl of hair against a smirk Nicolaus had never made when living.

“Mine,” he murmured thickly, and Envy laughed in delight at his brother’s first word.

“Greedy little thing,” he teased in return, and that was that.


***


Envy almost didn’t catch Greed’s foot before it hit the back of his head, but a quick twist had it in his hand, and he flipped over the offending limb, landing neatly in Greed’s blind spot. He hadn’t expected Greed to continue the turn, though, had thought he’d try to bring his leading foot back and that would have given Envy time to strike, so when Greed’s other foot caught him between the ribs he doubled over and wheezed.

“Hey, you alright?” Greed’s hand smoothed his back in circles, and he glared between coughs.

“Damn good follow-through,” he finally admitted, straightening and brushing Greed’s hand away. “You’re learning.”

“Thanks.” Greed’s fierce grin was something he was getting used to still. It always looked slightly predatory, although Envy could never pinpoint why. “Hey, I got a question.”

“Yeah?” Envy dropped into a comfortable crouch, grinning when Greed sat cross-legged beside him. “I might even answer it, then.”

“Very funny,” Greed chuckled. It faded quickly, though, replaced by a piercing seriousness. “How did you learn to fight?”

“That’s a dangerous question.” Envy looked away pointedly, carefully not looking at the house at the top of the hill. Dante was watching them, he was sure, and he didn’t want to give anything away. “You sure you want the answer?”

“Don’t care what she thinks of me,” Greed growled. “Just tell me.”

Envy frowned at him. “She can kill us, you know. Or worse. Don’t piss her off.”

“So I’ve got to dance around her instead? Play to her whims?” Greed snorted in disgust. “If I’d known what I was getting into, I would never have offered her a ring.”

Envy nudged him with a knee, smirking a little. “Tell the truth. If Nicolaus knew what he was getting into, he’d have run screaming the other way, no matter how much the idea of eternal life tempted him.”

“Eh, maybe,” Greed hedged, returning Envy’s playful nudge in kind. “Or maybe I’d have checked out the details. I mean, being what we are has a lot of benefits.” He held up a hand in demonstration, letting a thick sheet of carbon waver wildly across it. Envy winced.

“I thought you said you were getting better control,” he accused, grabbing the hand and testing a claw-point before it melted back into soft flesh. Greed shrugged.

“It’s better than it was. I’ve got plenty of time to learn,” he pointed out.

“When I was your age, I could hold a new shape for five minutes,” he informed Greed, politely ignoring the dramatic eye-roll. “I’m just worried that you’re not developing right - something could have-”

“You mean, she could have fucked up by giving me the stones before I knew which way was up,” Greed said flatly. Envy made a wild shushing gesture, and Greed growled and let the shield ripple over his whole body, a kind of warning that if he hit Envy in this shape, only one of them would regret it.

Envy grabbed his arm, dropping to his knees with a twist so they were facing each other. “That’s not it at all! You can’t understand-”

“Understand what? That you’re her fucking lapdog? I won’t be that. I won’t give in to every little thing she says. You know me better than that.” Greed glared hotly, teeth bared in defiance, and Envy flinched away when his teeth suddenly went pointed as the shield slid over his face. The change rippled away, carbon settling back into a normal human shape, and Greed sighed heavily.

“I don’t want to,” Envy whispered, staring down at his hands. “I just can’t… I’m too used to living.”

“We can go together,” Greed offered. “Watch each other’s backs.”

Envy almost considered it for a moment before shaking his head. “No,” he murmured, “You’re too young yet. Ask me again when you can hold your shield for a day.”

“At this rate that’ll be another hundred years!” Greed snarled, and Envy smiled sadly.

“Maybe then you’ll understand,” he told Greed, standing to leave.

“You never answered my question.” Greed’s hand was hot on his ankle, and he kicked back with the other foot without looking. He didn’t smile when he felt a jaw beneath his heel, just stepped out of the loosened grip and walked back to the house. Back to Dante.

“Fuck you,” he hissed under his breath. “Fuck you both.”

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-12 06:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] laylah.livejournal.com
*wibble*
*wibble more*

Oh! Baby Greed, and Envy with depth, and Dante such a bitch, and -- oh! I want things to be okay for them, so bad. I want Envy to agree to run away.
I want to hug them both, how wrong is that?

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-12 06:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] dogmatix-san.livejournal.com
...I second what laylah_r said. ;_; That was a fantastic fic.

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-12 07:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] blue-soaring.livejournal.com
That was wonderful! I've been chewing on pre-sealing dynamics between those two, and this is a great view of it. Like the idea of starting with Greed as human, then as newborn homunculus. Envy's reaction seems spot on to me, and the final section is full of great hints as to why it all went to hell.

I'm with Laylah, man. Someone kick Envy and make him run away with Greed.

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From: [identity profile] blue-soaring.livejournal.com - Date: 2005-02-12 07:27 pm (UTC) - Expand

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Date: 2005-02-12 07:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] maho-kiwi.livejournal.com
Awwwwwn

Envy is so...so sweet! And vulnerable Greed! Awww...
Very nice portrayl of the bits of these characters we don't get to see very often. It's hard to make Envy a sympathetic character, but you've managed somehow.

*snif* Big brother...

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-12 08:30 pm (UTC)
cmshaw: DC Comics: Kory cries "X'Hal!" (Default)
From: [personal profile] cmshaw
oooooh.

“He isn’t Nicolaus now.” Envy shook his head at the obvious simplicity she was failing to grasp. “He’s just a little thing. How could I hate something so cute?”

Dante stepped away, lip curling. Envy supposed that to human sensibilities, blood and exposed organs and twisted limbs could only be cause for vomit. He couldn’t help the fuzzy protective feeling, though, and when Dante lashed a sudden kick at the fleshy center of Nicolaus-that-was, he automatically rolled between them, hissing at the feel of a pointed toe between his ribs.


it's so adorable! and sweet! and gross! i love it!

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-12 08:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ponderosa121.livejournal.com
I have like no coherent thoughts at the moment, so please envision rampant keyboard mashing right now.

<3

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-12 09:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] xerne.livejournal.com
Gorgeous. I'm friending you, if you don't mind.

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-12 10:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pinstripesuit.livejournal.com
*wibbles*

This series is getting all kinds of fanart, dude. This was too awesome. Too. Fuckin'. Awesome. I can't wait for Part Deux.

(I just have some questions to ask before I get drawing, but I'll do that later.)

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-12 10:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pinstripesuit.livejournal.com
I can't wait for Part Deux.

Whoops. Nevermind. I got here through [livejournal.com profile] laylah_r's journal, and did not see that is was divided into separate sections. *is smart*

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Date: 2005-02-12 11:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] miss-arel.livejournal.com
Mmm, wow... this is lovely. I wasn't sure I'd be able to accept Envy being all sweet and protective and affectionate, but you made it work. I'm very impressed. And eagerly waiting for more.

PS: Greed says you can molest him any time you want to.

(no subject)

Date: 2005-02-13 12:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pinstripesuit.livejournal.com
PS: Greed says you can molest him any time you want to.

Can I join?

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Date: 2005-02-14 09:36 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wtfbrain.livejournal.com
Mmm, yum. Nice to see a possible origin for Greed.

Also, hi. I think I got here through [livejournal.com profile] laylah_r's LJ. But I'm not sure. Could have been some random FMA-related thing. Or something.

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Date: 2005-02-16 09:49 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] forgottenlover.livejournal.com
::crawls in via the pimpage and looks around:: I like you, I'm friending you. You write more and I'll tell you pretty things.

Like: You make evil cute.

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Date: 2005-03-31 12:55 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] the-rami.livejournal.com
;_; What a cute friendship between those two... *cuddles the Greed-baby.* Now I wonder how the hell it all went wrong and Greed and Envy ended up hating eachother's guts. T_T

Envy's never been a favorite character of mine(in fact I hate him half the time), but this fic made me wibble with love for him. <3 Great job, I love your style. <3

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Date: 2006-04-12 10:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] fangses.livejournal.com
*is late to the party, like always*

Hi. I'm not even sure how I ended up here, but I like it. The world needs more fic like this. Not a big Envy fan. Or a big Greed fan. But this fic works, and it's nice to see something out there about the Homunculi - particularly origin stuff and baby Homunculi. Because little piles of bones and exposed organs and whatnot are way cuter than kittens or puppies. Seriously.

Anyway, just wanted to say thanks for sharing. I suck at positive reviews. Er, yeah.

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