Few words if you don't mind. This is my first Fullmetal Alchemist fic and it is post-anime. I adore FMA manga, but I wouldn't dare to make a fic base on it before the story is finished. As said, this takes place three years after the events of anime but ignores the movie Conqueror of Shamballa. The first chapters of this fic has some of the characters from the movie and even some of the events (because the opportunity of having Fritz Lang in a fic is too tempting to use) but other than that the events of the movie did not occur in this fic. You may be asking why I'm making this and the answer is simple: I love Fullmetal Alchemist and I want to play with the characters.
As said keep in mind that I change some of the things, like Roy living in north, Noah being only able to see future and memories by touching and Izumi's death.
Pairings: mostly this is Ed-centric fic, but I'll admit now that I pair Ed/Winry. If you're looking for Ed paired with Noah, Rosé, Alfons, Roy or someone else, you won't find it in here.
And lastly, English is not my native language. Therefore the grammar and spelling mistakes are possible.
Disclaimers: I don't owe any of the characters, neither fictional or historical.
Finally, let us begin with crappy title.
THE WAY BACK
Chapter 1 Three Years Later
His mouth opened to let out a scream, but it died on his lips and nothing came. Cold sweat ran down his forehead and he was breathing heavily. It took a moment of him to get his brain activity back on working and understand where the hell he was. He was in bed, in his room, in the flat he owned with Alfons.
He sighed. Sometimes Edward Elric truly hated dreams.
He took deep breaths to calm himself. Going to sleep had nearly become something of a thread to him. It had already been three years since he had come to this world, the parallel of his own, yet the dreams never allowed him to be. No matter how many times Edward was sure he had gotten used to this world, which didn't differ much of his own, the dreams reminded him of the horrors of the past, the lost chances and things that could never be.
In those dreams he would still be in his own world, with his brother Al. Sometimes Al was trapped in his armour, sometimes he was the little boy Edward remembered him to be. Sometimes he saw dreams of his past, while he and Alphonse were kids, playing in their mother's yard with Winry. Or how he and Al were on one of their endless journeys, trying to find the Philosophers Stone. Although these memories filled him with warmth and made his happy, that happiness was always short lived.
After three years living in this other world Edward was sure there wasn't a way to get back. The most obvious difference between the worlds was that in this world he couldn't perform alchemy. In desperation Edward had turned his attention to science, trying to find a way back through that. But after just few years he had to admit the truth: it would take years before science of this world was anywhere close enough to help him open the Gate.
Edward felt a shiver when he remembered the Gate. The Gate was something that should not be seen by mortal eyes, yet he had seen it more than once during his 19 years of living. First time on that faithful night he and Al had tried to bring their mother back to life. Instead the Gate had taken Edward's arm and leg, and Al's entire body, leaving only his soul behind. And what had the Gate given them back? Not their mother, but homunculi resembling her, named Sloth.
The second time Edward had seen the Gate had been when that devil of a woman named Dante had send him through it. Instead of dying however, Edward had ended in a place called London and met his father who had explained about parallel worlds to him.
And then the third time. Even thinking about it confused him. Apparently Envy had killed him but Al had brought him back with the Philosophers Stone. Edward had gain his leg and arm back but the Gate had taken Al.
Of course I couldn't let that happen, Edward thought. There's no choice when it comes between us, I'd do anything for him. So I offered myself to the Gate in exchange for Al and the next thing I know is that I'm in this world. Where is no alchemy, but is wars and misery like everywhere else.
When Edward had come to this world he had lost his arm and a leg again. His father Hohenheim had taken care of him, until Edward travelled to Transylvania to find Hermman Oberth, a man who claimed that people could travel to space with rockets. Edward was fascinated by the idea, thinking that he could find a way to his own world in space. However rocket engineering could hardly take a man off this planet yet for few decades. Edward hadn't met his father after that, and didn't even know what has become to him. The only things he had from his father were the artificial arm and leg Hohenheim had made for him. He looked at the hand in front of him and the fingers that moved by his will. The hand and leg were both useful but not nearly as well done as the ones Winry made for him.
Edward smacked his head with artificial arm. I just had to go and think about her then, didn't I? Blasted! Can't a day go by I wouldn't think of her?
Although Edward thought many times his brother Al, wondering if he was okay and if he had his body back, thinking of Winry was more frustrating for him. The three years he had spent in this world had given him more than enough time to think things through. Every time the thought of Winry Rockbell, his childhood friend and mechanic, crossed his mind Edward couldn't help but feel disappointment and melancholy and his mind was filled with endless questions that all started "What if…"
Edward shook his head. Thinking those questions would make him loose his mind. It was still dark outside so he might as well try to sleep. He just hoped dreams would be good ones. The dream he had woken up had been about Shou Tucker and his daughter Nina. The dream had started as a bitter reminder of the days he and Al had spend in Tucker's house, learning more of alchemy and playing with Nina. The little girl had called them her "big brothers". Very soon however dream had reminded of what had ultimately happen; of Ed finding out that Tucker had used his own wife in his alchemical experiments and how Ed and Al were unable to stop him from fusing Nina and the dog Alexander into a chimera.
Edward closed his eyes, trying to get the image of the creature Nina had become out of his head. It would be a long night.
Edward buttoned his waistcoat as he left his small room. When he entered the small area that was to be called kitchen he saw Noah boiling water. Noah was a young gypsy girl whom Edward and Alfons had met in a fairy where Alfons had shown some of his rocket models. She had been harassed and Edward had given her "a helping hand" (meaning he broke the jaws of those jerks). Noah had been staying with them ever since.
"Good morning, Edward" she said without even turning around.
"How do you always know when someone is behind you?" Edward couldn't help but ask.
Noah turned to look at the blonde man and gave a small smile. "You should know already that I see more that most people" she said.
Edward didn't comment, although he still found Noah's claims to be able to see people's minds and futures unscientific. Yet, he still wondered how Noah had once said she had seen him walking with armour in a dream. Ed had never told anyone in this world about Al's soul being sealed in armour.
"I hope that is coffee you're making, I really need some" Ed said.
"You had another nightmare" Noah said, it wasn't a question.
"Did I scream?"
"No, I just know".
Edward was about to reply when a loud coughing was heard from another room. Edward felt an unpleasant feeling in his stomach every time he heard it. The coughing belonged to Alfons Heiderich, the young rocket engineer whom Edward had met in Transylvania and befriended with. Edward wasn't sure which had quality in Alfons had attracted him; his excitement about rockets that resembled Ed's obsession of alchemy, or that Alfons reminded Ed of his brother Al. Alfons had a blonde hair and green eyes, but there was something very Al-like in his face. Ed supposed that Alfons was Alphonse's alter-ego in this world. After all Ed had met many other people who resembled somehow those of his world. Noah for example reminded him of Rosé Thomas.
Edward and Alfons had moved to Munich last year, when the there had been the infamous Beer Hall Putsch, when the National Socialist German Workers Party, the Nazi party, had tried to take control in Germany. Their upraising however had failed and their leader, a man named Adolf Hitler, was arrested. Hitler was now in trial and might face imprisonment. After hearing some of Hitler's speeches, Edward was sure that would be for the best.
Alfons had been working with a rocket in a small factory founded by Nazi party. After the failed uprising it was put to question if the foundation for the rocket engineering would be continued. But now it started to seem that it wouldn't matter. The long exposure for the rocket fuels had taken their toll on Alfons' body. He had been loosing his health lately and was constantly coughing.
"How is he?" Edward asked.
Noah shook her brown haired head. "Not good. Last time I saw he was coughing blood. I've also been unable to see his future anymore" she said.
Edward was about to argue that it wasn't much of a proof yet, but kept his tongue when seeing the look in Noah's eyes. Edward knew Noah cared about Alfons and there was nothing worse than watching someone you care about dying and being unable to do anything. Edward remembered how he and Al had stayed beside their mother's sickbed till the end.
The ringing of a phone pulled Edward out of his thought.
"It's someone you know" Noah said.
Edward raised an eyebrow but referred from commenting. It couldn't be Hughes, for he lived near and would come to visit if needed. Maybe it was the movie director he had met in Berlin. "Hallo" Edward answered.
"Son, it's been awhile" said the familiar voice of Hohenheim.
"Dad?" Edward asked in disbelief.
"I think I found the way back to our world".
To be continued…
Chapters may seem small to some but this is the usual size I write my chapters. Don't ask me to be anything I'm not.
Reviews would be nice, considering this is my first FMA fic. Constructive criticism is also welcome and honesty. Flames, no thank you. I'm not forcing anyone to read this fic.