~ IF ONLY… ~
“Chapter 3: Love for Alchemy”
At lunch, Trisha announced that she has invited Roy Mustang for tomorrow dinner.
"Oh honey! Great idea!"
"Weeeeee!" Cheered Alfonse. Edward could tell the little brother is a big fan of the Colo... Brigadier General.
"Oh... joy." said Edward. "Mind if I just don't move out of my room for the rest of the day?"
"Edward!" Hohenheim ordered him. "You will be staying downstairs until Roy is here and you will act like a true gentlemen!"
"Should I lick the dust of his boots too?"
"Edward!" Trisha looked at her shocked. "How can you..."
"...say such thing? Just because his wife is the headmaster of the University you want me to attend after I finish here?"
"Edward that is the Best University in the country!"
"I don't want to go there!"
"Then what do you want to become when you grow up, my son?"
'I want to be a State Alchemist...' -he wanted to say but he didn't. His chances to become one was getting lower and lower. He always thought he can be one because he knows a lot... but when this shrimp showed up and he felt destroyed. This other self showed a way he could have become also. He was strong, know everything about Alchemy and he did the transmutation without a circle. In the whole country it was only his father who could do that. How come this shrimp can do it too?
"I don't know." He finally said. His mother sighed. "Well, forgive me but I'm full. I'll just retreat to my room."
"Don't forget to come down when Roy arrives." Hohenheim told him.
"Don't worry. I won't."
"Personally..." Edward said quietly "I don't think I should meet the General."
"Oh come on Ed!" Hohenheim smiled at him. "I'm sure he will be interested in your story, and he might be able to help us with work too."
"Oh! By the way! How do you know Mustang-san?" Alfonse asked.
"Well, technically he is my boss in my world. But there he is only a colonel. And he is not married either, who is his wife here?"
"A women called Riza Hawkeye..." Hohenheim said and Edward thought he will die in laughing.
"Hawkeye?!?!?! No, way those two?! Hahaha!!"
"You know her?" Trisha blinked.
"Sure! Blond and Super strict! Actually she is a lieutenant colonel where I'm coming from. She usually keeps a gun to Roy's head to make him work properly and not slack off!" the others had to smile on that too "I cannot imagine them having children at all."
"Actually they have 3." Trisha commented.
"No way... then we are talking about different people here!"
"No." Hohenheim stated. "Roy Mustang and Riza Hawkeye have three children. And they are quite happy."
"Okay, then I MUST meet this Roy Mustang of yours... mine usually avoids any kind of responsibility."
Hohenheim turned to his wife. "Did you ask him to bring Risa along too?"
"Yes but he said that his wife is really busy." She answered.
"Aww too bad." Edward stated. "I was curious how she looked like here. Uniform less and all."
"Maybe some other time Edward." smiled Trisha.
...but Edward knew there will be no other time. He has to go home as soon as he can. Still, Hohenheim might be right... this world Roy might be able to help him.
After lunch Hohenheim needed to go but some things, so Edward stayed alone at the big table with the papers.
He had to admit he missed the company of the man. Alfonse was away to the Rockbells and Trisha was busy in the kitchen. The only company he could have get was the Edward of this house, but they didn't talked much. No wonder... when the braided alchemist popped up in this world it was him who he screamed at before he fainted.
Plus add the fact that this world's Edward was... tall. A head taller than the Fullmetal alchemist. And why? Edward could only blame a disgusting white liquid which comes from the cows: Milk.
Edward Elric liked milk and he often drinks it too... sometimes just to annoy the short alchemist.
Still... Fullmetal felt a bit bad about the fact that they hardly ever talk. So he just thought for a second, then stood up from the table and headed upstairs to check on his this world's counterpart.
Meanwhile the mentioned boy was sitting at his table studying alchemy. He was doing some calculations which just didn't wanted to have a logical result.
He just picked up the paper, grumbled a bit and formed it into a ball.
The Fullmetal knocked on the door and opened it.
"Hi, Edward..." he said quietly as he stepped in. "What are you doing?"
"Giving up!" The tall blond said as he turned in his chair to face the alchemist and he threw the paperball at him.
"Ooo... " it hit Edward right on the forehead. It didn't hurt, its just that Edward wasn't expecting it. He looked down at the destroyed paper and picked it up. "What's this?"
"Trash. You can keep it. I don't need it anymore." he said as he took off his classes and rubbed his eyes. Than he turned back to his table and collapsed on it, resting his head on his arms.
The Alchemist unfolded the ball and checked its content. It was a calculation but the reaction missed the catalist. No wonder the boy had trouble with it. He stepped over to the tall blond but didn't see his face because it was buried into his arms.
Sudden he set up and closed the Alchemy book on the table. "I need to learn Economics." he said. So he stood and almost walking through the Alchemist he headed to his bookshelf and took down a blue book.
Edward checked the paper again then asked. "Do you know the laws of the energyfields by Dr. Tim Marcow?"
The tall blond looked at him through his glasses. "I'm sure father does, why don't you go and as him?" he said pointing the way out.
"Your father went down to the village."
"Too bad." Edward said as he headed back to his table and settled. "Now you have nobody to chit-chat with, Mr. Alchemist."
A minute passed silently as the braided short one read deeper into the paper and the taller one with the ponytail was reading his big blue book.
"Can I have a question?" spoke up the smaller one but he didn't look up from the paper.
"If you disappear after it."
"When was the last time you actually did alchemy?"
"Er..." The taller one thought for a bit as he pushed his glasses back to their place on his nose. "I think I was twelve."
"What?" asked the alchemist shocked. "You...you haven't touched an array for five years now?"
"No... why? Father always does alchemy. I'm not needed to." the tall one shrugged.
"Economics!" he cut his other world counterpart. "Is what I have to learn now!"
The Fullmetal took the book away from the other blond. "Forget the Economics!" he shouted. "Alchemy is not about books it's about actually doing it!"
Edward stood up and looked down at the other blond. "Why don't you just go away and let me be?"
The shorter one sighed and gave the Economy book back. He headed to the door.
He opened it but stopped in his tracks and looked back. "Why do you want to become an Alchemist?"
"If we are so similar then you should know." he commented from above his book. Then he added: "You can come back when you figured it out."
The Alchemist left and closed the door behind himself.
But in less then two second the door burst open: "Because you love it. Because your brain is spinning around. Because when you see the leaves of a tree you keep thinking how could the photosynthesis make sugar out of water, coal dioxide and the energy of the sun while you know the light is actually just made of millions of tiny things called photons and still... the tree lives, and it doesn't even know about Alchemy."
And the tall blond set back in his chair and nodded. Then he turned: "Congrats. Still I can give up this dream. So don't tell Dad about it."
"Oh, don't say that! Come on! Lets go out and do some alchemy!"
Edward sighed and turned back to the blue book. "Sure go on. Have fun."
The braided one stood there for a while then turned and left. "I'll be waiting for you." And he closed the door after he stepped out of the room.
He sighed as he took the steps downstairs. He called into the kitchen to tell Trisha he will be outside.
Then he walked out and headed behind the house where he knew there's always some firewood or other things which can be used as transmuting material.
Then he heard steps and he turned to see himself standing there.
"I knew you would come." He grinned.
"I hate you" blushed the taller one.
"Here!" he gave a bucket to Edward, who blinked at him.
"It's a bucket." he stated.
"Yes, yes take it." so the tall one took it.
"And what do I do with it?" he asked.
"Oh well... you transmute it." smiled the braided one.
"Anything! Use your imagination!"
The tall one looked down at the bucket in his hands.
"I cannot transmute it." The short one looked at him oddly, so he explained: "I don't know what a bucket is made of."
"Oh." The alchemist said. "Yeah, you miss the routine."
"Excuse me!" He rolled his eyes.
"You don't have to know what a bucket is made of before you transmute it."
"But..." He couldn't finish because the short one clapped his hands and touched the two sides of the bucket lightly.
Nothing happed to the bucked but the alchemist said "Its made out of iron and zinc... and a tiny bit of other metals."
"How... do you know that?"
"Routine. Every atom reacts differently if you gave them Alchemical energy. After a time you know which atoms does the material contains, by the way the atoms react."
"Okay lets draw and array!" smiled the shorter one as he got himself a rod thing from the junk behind the house. "Which array should we use?" He asked from the tall one.
"I would use the one with the three triangles."
And soon the two blond were on the four drawing the transmutation circle. They put the bucked in the middle of it.
The Alchemist stood there, while the other one was kneeling at the side of the of the array.
"What are you gonna transmute it into?"
"Not sure. I'm thinking." he said then he had an idea so he put his hand down at the circle. The whole thing lit up with a yellow light and the bucked started to deform... and form into a small statue of a woman. The light turned off and the boy said: "Oh well... I'm not a big artist."
"Mom. Awwww <3 " The alchemist said. "That's sweet."
"It doesn't even look like Mom." The tall one said as he got up and picked up the statue to look at it closely.
"What are guys doing?" Asked Alfonse as he run up to them. "I saw some bright lights..." than he saw the array. "Oh! I wanna do alchemy too!!!"
"No, Alfonse. Go into the house." his brother told him.
"Don't be mean to him, Edward." smiled the shorter Ed. "Trust me, he is just like you when it comes to alchemy."
Alfonse was nodding and made the irresistible puppy eyes. So the one with the glasses said: "Okay get yourself something you can transform."
So his brother helped Alfonse to draw an array. And Al transmuted the piece of wood.
"Alfonse, what is this?"
"Umm...actually I don't know." He said innocently.
And the brothers kept transforming things, mostly chopped up wood, while the Alchemist looked at them with a smile.
Then he turned and walked back to the house.
"Oh Edward. Did Alfonse come back yet?"
"He did, don't worry, your sons are playing behind the house."
"Oh what are they doing?" Trisha asked.
"Alchemy." Smiled Edward.
End of chapter 3