So I felt like writing something that is a bit more on the dark side and this is what happened...

Special thanks to No.1DigiBakuFan who helped me out as beta and motivated me a great deal to finally finish this.

Warning: When I say dark I mean almost rape and blood. People who might be triggered by this or are under age ought to be careful.

That said: Have fun reading and maybe leave this author an opinion on her work :)

Hidden Things

Chapter 1

He opens the door and Ed knows that today something is different.

All the other times she had had to come here he had still been in uniform, immaculate like a toy soldier. Now he is wearing a bathrobe, probably thrown over sleep clothes to make him look somewhat more dignified when opening the door not wrapped up in his authority.

"What are you doing here? I told you not to come here today."

Another difference. Usually his voice is all smooth and mocking. Lately he had been more silent. But today he is plain annoyed, almost snapping at her.

"I need that information Mustang and I know you have something, you always do!"

"Come back tomorrow or something." He makes to close the door.

Ed puts a foot in. "No. I can't! I won't let Al suffer in that armour a single day longer than necessary just because you're an asshole! And it's hard enough to keep this secret from him as it is, do you know how difficult it is to lie to him about where I go without him? He knows me better than anyone else and he's suspicious as hell already because he can see I don't like where I'm going! So let's get this over with today as was planned! The deal was every Saturday and I don't want to hate another day of the week because of you!"

"Don't talk that loud you damn brat!" he hisses, then steps back into the house, leaving the door open for her to follow him in.

Ed walks through to the living room. She knows the drill so she begins to strip her clothes. Stopping though when she realises a few more unusual things. For one Mustang isn't sitting on the couch, leaning back and watching her undress with unreadable eyes. Actually he isn't even in the room. Then the room itself isn't as tidy as usual. The desk in the corner is covered in papers, that is normal, but some were carelessly, almost angrily, swept to the floor. The familiar blue uniform is haphazardly strewn across the carpet, here the shirt, there the pants, elsewhere the jacket. The white belt hangs over the back of the couch, the gun usually strapped to it has been placed on the coffee table. Next to it a tumbler and a bottle of alcohol.

Ed has never cared much for alcohol so she doesn't know the exact name of the liquid but she can tell it's strong. And already some of it is missing. Maybe that is the explanation for Mustang's unusual snappiness. His unusually ruffled appearance.

A sound behind her alerts her to Mustang stepping back into the living room.

"There, now go." And he slaps a folder against her chest.

Ed barely catches it, reaction slowed by surprise and confusion. She looks at it, then flicks through the pages. Classified notes, confiscated by the military long ago, written by an alchemist who claimed that everyone has a philosopher's stone within themselves and then experimented in illegal ways to confirm that. Information hard to get, something Mustang would usually make a fuss about, taking two rounds from her instead of just one.

Ed stares at him in surprise. Until now the colonel never gave anything to her before she had paid the price, he has always waited until after. From his position on the couch he glares back at her.

"What is it?" The voice strains to come out as smooth and superior as usual. It disturbs Ed.

"Nothing." she says, not sure if it would be a good thing to admit her confusion.

"Then go." He grabs the bottle and fills the tumbler on the coffee table in front of him.

This time she can't help it. "But... what about...?"

"You have what you wanted and you know where the door is." He looks at her from over the rim of the glass. "Told you I don't want you here today." And he drinks the glass down.

"But... it's not equivalent..."

"I'll collect payment another day then."

"I don't want to be in your debt!" What if Mustang is not taking the usual payment because he needs her to owe him, because he has something even worse that he wants her to do?!

"Then leave the folder here." Filling the tumbler once more.

"Very funny! Remember what I just told you about why I'm here even though you told me to piss off? Or are you too wasted already?!"

A bitter grin. "I'm not wasted yet and if I was intending to get so then I wouldn't bother with a glass. Now, if you'd please leave." Only Mustang could make 'please' sound like a command. The contents of the tumbler vanish down his throat once more.

She stares down at the folder then back up at him. "Why can't we just do this as usual?!"

"And here I thought you'd jump at the opportunity to get out of here with information you didn't have to pay for." This sounds more like his usual smug self, though now that she has seen the cracks she recognises the behaviour for what it is: A diversion. A shield for whatever is beneath that surface.

"I don't believe that things can be for free and you know that!"

"Oh yes, I know that very well," he drawls.

How she wants to punch that smirk from his face... Though something about the grin is off. It doesn't reach his eyes, no smug cunning twinkles in those dark orbs. Fake. And Mustang is reaching for the bottle once again.

"Thought you didn't want to get wasted?" Ed asks with a raise of her eyebrows.

"Your annoying presence changed my mind." Sweet like ice cream and just as cold.

"You could easily get rid of me if you'd just stick to the deal!" she growls.

Now he is the one who raises his brows. "You know, I'm starting to think you like coming here."

"Yeah, I totally like being your little whore!" The sarcasm is so thick it is almost tangible.

And he laughs. The asshole just laughs. "You just called yourself small!" He has to put down the tumbler and the bottle as he shakes from laughter.

Ed's face is burning and she wants nothing more than to strangle the man with the belt still hanging there, right next to his neck, over the back of the couch. Yet she doesn't because she is busy wondering if Mustang really looks more alive than a second ago or if she's hallucinating. But then he stops laughing anyway, chucks down one more drink and leans back, eyes closed, sighing. "Just go home Fullmetal. You don't want to see this."

It is scientific curiosity that makes her want to find out what is wrong with Mustang. Nothing more. Ed hates him.

"See what? And I'm not going without the informations nor am I going when I'm being in your debt," she then states.

For a while Mustang doesn't move. Then he drags his hands down his face, leaving one to cover his eyes. For a moment a shiver runs through his body and he looks like he's fighting himself. But Ed must have imagined that, she blinks and he sits motionless again.

"Fine. Get over here," he then says.

The alcohol seems to start taking effect, his gaze isn't as sharp as usual when he finally lifts his hand from his eyes to look at her. Deposing the folder on the coffee table for the moment, she stands before him. Stands waiting for what he usually does. Waiting for him to grab her, press her down on the couch and take her roughly. But Mustang doesn't move.

Ah, yes, she is still wearing most of her clothes.

Shyness and shame have died long ago, when she undresses now there is only resignation. No fire, neither metaphorical nor real, warms her body as she stands there, naked and still waiting. Only now, with slight goosebumps rising on her skin, does she realise that the fireplace in the room is indeed empty. It has never been empty before, there was always a fire crackling there.

Turning back to Mustang she sees he has his head cocked to the side, looking thoughtfully at the arms she has subconsciously wrapped around herself. Not that the metal arm would keep the cool air at bay, it would actually suck even more warmth away from her body, but it is a reflex she can't stop unless she actively realises she is doing it.

And Mustang is looking at her arms in wonderment before bending forward and reaching under the couch. He pulls out one of his ignition gloves. Ed snatches it away before he can put it on.

"I won't let you play with fire when drunk!"

He has always been controlled. Rarely showed his anger through more than a displeased expression and a few stinging words. That's why the sudden rage twisting his face shocks her more than the slap that turns her head to the side.

"Don't tell me what I can and cannot do!" Ripping the glove from her startled hands he pulls it on and snaps, the spark finding its destination as precisely as ever, a controlled fire roaring to life. Ed can only stare, still startled.

"I'd need more than the whole damn bottle to forget about this!" He rips the glove off and throws it to the other side of the room. And Ed has a feeling he wasn't talking about only the current situation. She frowns, this unusually explosive Mustang worries her. Not because she cares for him but simply because it makes the situation unpredictable.

The colonel sighs and pinches the bridge of his nose, then rubs at his temples. He takes a deep breath and his expression becomes unreadable once again. "This is a bad idea. Go home," he decides.

Yes, she really wants to strangle him. "I'm already naked, we might as well get it done!"

"Fullmetal, I'm tired and not in the mood."

"Yeah and I'm not in the mood to be indebted to you, so get it the fuck up and stuff it in, after that you can sit around and be useless as much as you want to!"

No reaction to the word useless. Just a deep, slow intake of breath and a clenched jaw, then he stands before her, his hands settling on her hips. Fingers slowly stroke up and down her sides and Ed doesn't know what to do.

This is something very new to her, her body has never been caressed before. Not by him, not anybody else. Her first time had been him lovelessly fucking her into the couch and all the other times had been the same. But now... now his hands are careful, tracing lines on her back, cupping her breasts, softly pinching the nipples. And then his lips, kissing the side of her neck...

Ed jumps and backs off, would have stumbled over and fallen onto the coffee table had Mustang's arms not been around her. "What are you doing?" Confusion makes her thoughts tumble around, turning her brain into a mess.

"I don't really know."

Ed blinks at the far too honest confession. Mustang looks just as confused as she does. Helpless even. He cocks his head to the side. "Maybe I'm drunk after all..." When Mustang lets go of Ed her skin feels strangely cold where his arms have been. "I just..." he trails off, schools his features into cool detachment again. Grabs her and throws her onto the couch as usual, but then falters, not pushing her legs apart to settle there. He just stands and stares. It makes Ed angry.

"Will you stop staring and hurry up!" She suppresses the urge to curl up under his strange gaze. Mustang doesn't undress himself. His eyes seem empty when he finally climbs onto the couch and between her legs. "I-..." But he doesn't continue, just closes his eyes and leans over her.

And again his hands and lips start exploring. Ed lies still, torn between telling him off or letting him continue, just for curiosities sake. "What-...?"

"Just let me do this!" He sounds pleading and desperate, startling Ed into submission. Something is wrong with Mustang but she doesn't know what. And she can't say it's bad because the administrations to her body would feel good if she were willing to accept them. She ponders if she should give in to this treatment that feels so much better than what she usually receives from him. But there is always the fact that this is a deal, a necessity and she can't discern if it would be okay to take pleasure from it. Her body is willing to receive these touches, but her soul can't yet decide. She doesn't want Mustang to be able to make her feel good. She hates him.

But then, why does she hate him?

She had always disliked him for being an arrogant jerk. But she only started to really hate him when he had first taken her, on this same couch. And it wasn't really because of this price she had to pay but because he had been so cold, didn't seem to treat her as another person. She is just warm flesh, just a toy. That's why she hates him.

Yet he is changing that now, is practically worshipping her body and she decides that maybe it is okay to give in, just this once. To feel good before she gets so used to just lying there and taking it that she would never feel pleasure from this. Before she would lose all interest in this activity that was said to be so exiting and wonderful.

So she stops questioning and takes it all in greedily.

His hands seem to be everywhere, sliding up and down her body, then halting to play with her breasts, thumbs circling the nipples. His lips are warm, sometimes ghosting over her skin as light as his fluttering breath, sometimes pressing down harder. He kisses, nibbles, sucks and licks, leaving hot trails and making her shiver all over.

Heat begins to spread inside of her and Ed can't help but tilt her head back and offer her neck to him. He takes the opportunity, makes the skin around her pulse tingle and treats her vulnerable throat with utmost care before moving up to nibble at her delicate jawline. Ed's breath hitches.

Suddenly the man above her his no more threat but something she wants to welcome.

When his mouth moves down the side of her neck and doesn't stop upon reaching the ugly automail scar, she can't help but gasp. The skin there always hurts a bit from the stress the metal puts on it but the touch of his lips is like a massage, relaxing and slowly but surely making her utter a low moan. Mustang moves to her collarbone, kisses around the screw that keeps the automail connected there, then moves over to the other side where no metal mares her body. Ed's back arches off the couch, her body wanting more of this wonderful feeling. Softly biting the collarbone once he encourages her even more, then moves down, his talented tongue finding pert nipples, swirling around the flesh nubs.

A shocked gasp leaves her lips and a surprisingly soft and calming "Shhhh" leaves his as one of his hands slips down, gently stroking the inside of her thighs. Ed's fear calms but her breathing still speeds up as the tickling sensation of Mustang's fingers crawls towards her most intimate place. Then one digit pushes in and it doesn't take long for Ed to be one panting and writhing mess.

Mustang has made her come before, every time actually, but it has never been like this. Ed doesn't know if it is something like a natural talent or if he has just done it often enough to pull all the right moves out of habit even when he doesn't care about her pleasure in the slightest. Whatever the reason, he had her coming every time. But now...

Now he is actually trying to make her feel good and damn she can feel the difference it makes because the waves of pleasure his touch has rolling over her are a tsunami compared to the usual ripples. Without her really thinking about it her hands reach out to him and she grabs the bathrobe he's still wearing, pulling him close. Mustang seems startled but doesn't stop her, instead he obediently leans in and Ed is surprised because usually he would keep a certain distance, reminding her he was the one in control.

In a split second Ed decides to make good use of his unusual compliance; she wants to know how it feels to participate in the action. Mustang has to pull his hand away from the wet place between her legs and Ed almost goes back on her decision to get the bathrobe off him, but then the piece of cloth is already gone and she can grab him by the white singlet he is still wearing and pull him back in. She has a firm hold on the light fabric, absent mindedly realising that she has never seen him without it before. Mustang without pants or underwear? Yes. But Mustang without some sort of shirt? Never.

It has never confused her before, she had just been happy that he didn't expect her to touch him, caress that firm chest. Now though she wonders why he keeps wearing shirts because now she wouldn't mind to let her hands wander over the expanse of strong muscles.

He sighs a soft sound of pleasure when she slips her hands underneath the fabric and as small as the sound is, it makes her breathing speed up. She isn't used to such soft, wanton sounds from him. The occasional groan she knows but mostly he has been silent, apart from his breathing becoming more and more heavy the closer he came to climax. But this little noise now sounded incredible good in Ed's ears.

Yet when she tries to pull the singlet up and off him he stops moving, pulling back and gripping the hem of the fabric hard to keep it down. "No." he hisses in a downright aggressive manner and Ed drops her hands to her sides, baffled as he starts shaking and grabs his head, hands curling to fists in his tousled hair. His eyes are closed now and he looks like he's in pain. But then it makes way for an almost pleading expression, yet Ed isn't sure if he's talking to her when he says "Just let me show you something!"

She wants to ask what is going on but then his hands untangle from his hair and he gently strokes her thighs to the left and right of his kneeling form. Thick, dark lashes flutter and then he's looking at her with eyes that seem dead yet at the same time more alive than ever. Like the soul inhabiting those eyes is far away but definitely not gone. His expression is just as confusing, he looks like he's sorry for something yet is happy at the same time, a mix that results in an odd kind of sadness.

Then Mustang leans forward, down and close to Ed again. His touch is a gentle caress and this time Ed is sure that it is loving.

Oh, the other touches she has received today have been more for her benefit than his as well, but they were still only based on meaningless pleasure for the body. But now he seems to touch the flesh to reach her soul. His gaze follows his hand as it wanders over her body, emotion flickering in the back of those seemingly empty orbs. She can even see concern when his fingertips hoover over a scar and then he bends over and kisses it like mothers or some lovers do to make it better.

Ed blinks, trying to make sure that he is no hallucination.

She has always wondered why Mustang's subordinates follow him so loyally. Al had told her how Hawkeye had cried when she had thought the colonel dead and if it hadn't been Al who told her Ed might have questioned the truth of that story. She had sometimes thought she had seen glimpses of a human being capable of compassion and care underneath the exterior she had come to hate but those glimpses became rare with time. First she was wondering if it was just her losing her faith in mankind but then lately even those trusted subordinates had started to frown at Mustang and she wondered if maybe it was him losing faith and becoming like those he wanted to kick off the throne to do better. And then he had roped her into their deal and she had stopped caring in favour for simply hating that damn womaniser who wouldn't even stop shoving her onto his couch when he started having a different date for every single day of the week.

But now she can see there is a soul full of emotions locked away in there and that soul is leading his gentle caress now, trying to make her feel good in more ways than simply plain sexual. Tender lips kiss her skin, and Ed breathes slowly, relishing the feeling, thinking she can wonder about the reasons later when this probably one of a kind evening is over. Then those lips meet her mouth and Ed flinches in surprise.

Mustang pulls back immediately. He closes his eyes and lowers his head, his bangs shadowing his face. Though they don't hide his mouth and Ed can see him bite his lip. A tremble runs through his body, he swallows and his head lowers even more. It looks a bit like he is trying not to cry, but not quite the same.

But then he's back to caressing her and Ed feels like she is something fragile. When he finally settles between her legs he is careful about where he places his weight and buries his face in her neck. He takes a deep breath, then he shoves his boxers out of the way.

They had never used a condom. Mustang said he was clean and he couldn't reproduce. Ed hadn't bothered to ask why, just believed him for the simple reason that she didn't think Mustang would be stupid enough to get infected with some illness or knock up the most useful subordinate in his thrive for promotions.

The intrusion is much more pleasant than normally when he just jumps at her the moment she is undressed. He starts to move slowly and Ed can feel his arms slipping underneath her body, pulling her closer to him, something he has never done before. It feels like she is wanted and needed and not just a tool and it makes her happy. Wrapping her arms around his broader frame she tries to show him that it's good, hoping he might remember and treat her like this more often.

Mustang stops and looks at her, surprised but with something akin to hope somewhere deep in those dark eyes. When he kisses her this time she doesn't flinch, she kisses back. He is even more shy than she is, wary that she might pull back again if he goes too fast. Though Ed only hesitates because she has never kissed someone like this, has never done more than a peck on the cheek. But when Mustang slowly increases the movement of his hips and Ed gasps he takes a chance and slips in his tongue.

They don't have much time for Ed to learn about french kisses though, they need too much air, both of them panting as they near climax. Ed has her head thrown back and can barely keep herself from getting loud, her hands clutching at Mustang who is still holding her close, his hot breath on her shoulder making her automail scar tingle pleasantly.

She grabs him tightly when she finally can't hold back anymore. "Mustang, I-" and then the pleasure explodes inside of her and she knows she has taken him over the edge with her when he utters the most delicious sound she's ever heard and slowly ceases to move.

They lie in a panting heap for a while, then he pulls back and just looks at her for a moment. His eyes have that unreadable expression again that she knows from previous encounters and she is sad that the caring Mustang is gone again. But suddenly something flickers in his gaze and a second later he presses a chaste but lingering kiss to her lips. Then he retreats completely, pulls his boxers back on and sits at the far end of the couch, legs drawn to his chest.

Ed is confused. That last kiss had felt so important, was filled with so much emotions she can't name but knows are precious. She slowly sits up, still looking at him, not sure what to do. The colonel is staring into the air, thoughtful.

"You are free to go," he then says absent mindedly. "You've paid the price."

Ed watches him the whole time while putting her clothes back on, even pulls her top over her head faster than usual. Something about Mustang is creepy. She decides that it's maybe just him being drunk that makes him so weird. In his head his behaviour today probably makes perfectly sense.

And Ed still can't stop wanting to know what's up with him. Only remembering that she hates him holds her back.

But then, is hating someone a reason to deny them help? Help that maybe would even help them to realise their mistakes and to redeem themselves? And is he even still the Mustang that deserves her hatred or has something changed now and only needs a little push in the right direction? Ed doesn't realise that she has already put her clothes completely back on until he looks at her. "Still here?"

"Obviously," she says, though without real bite.

He cocks is head to the side. "You're weird today."

Ed snorts. "You're one to talk!"

Mustang huffs a laugh, then looks away and starts to stare into the air again. "Go home, Fullmetal." He sounds tired.

Ed looks at him. Today he has not only taken from her, no, today he seems to have given her as much as he could, and she doesn't mean the folder full of information. It's like he has tried to show her how sex is supposed to be, tried to show her the difference between making love and what he usually does to her. She doesn't know why but he has done it, has awkwardly tried to be good to her. He has never been sadistic towards her or otherwise bad but he had never really cared either. Yet today he had poured that soul hidden away in the back of his eyes into every move.

And she can't just leave him sitting curled up on the couch after that.

But how is she supposed to find out how to help him?

She stands before him, hands on her hips. "Look at me."

He turns his head away, focuses on the weapon still placed on the coffee table. "Go home."

She blinks. Then her temper gets the better of her and she just grabs his chin and pushes it up so she can look him in the eyes. He pulls away immediately. "Don't touch me!"

"Just a minute ago you didn't seem to mind the contact!" she yells at him, frustrated by her confusion.

"I always mind!" he suddenly yells back before hunching over, hands pressed to the sides of his head like he's trying to simultaneously block out an annoying sound and massage a headache away. A violent shiver runs through his body. "I always mind, but I can't stop it!"

Ed stares at the shivering mess sitting there on the couch. This is so much not the overconfident Roy Mustang she knows that she feels like she's caught up in a bizarre dream. Maybe a nightmare.

"I'm trying!" he continues, voice weak, fingers digging into his skull "But all I can do is damage control..." Suddenly he slumps, all energy leaving him, and even the shaking subsides. "I'm not strong enough to get it out of me. All I can do is compromise. I'm sorry."

He's still now. Apart from breathing he doesn't move. Ed tries to make sense of him but she feels like she can't unless she knows everything. "Get what out of you?" she asks. He doesn't react so she grabs him by the shoulders and shakes. For a moment he remains limp, body swaying lifelessly in her grip. Then he snarls and harshly pushes her away.

Edeline stumbles backwards yet before she can crash into the glass surface of the coffee table the fall is stopped with a jerk at her automail arm. A slow tearing sound directs her gaze to where the cloth of Mustang's singlet has snagged in the joints of her automail fingers when she instinctively grasped at the shoulders she'd been shaking when getting pushed. But the shoulder strap of that thin undershirt wasn't made to hold Ed's weight like this and with the edge of the metal joints sawing into the cloth it now starts to rip apart completely. Riiitsh and then it's gone.

And Ed doesn't bother with getting into a more comfortable position than lying halfway on the coffee table because now she can finally see what the problem with Mustang is.

He hasn't realised it yet, he is shaking again, staring down at his hands like you do when you did something you didn't want to do. Only when he looks at her and sees that she's staring at his chest does he glance down as well and sees what she sees.

There's an Oroboros Tattoo on his chest.