Fandom: Fullmetal Alchemist
Summary: "And our bodies are earth. And our thoughts are clay. And we eat and sleep with death."
Rating: PG-13/R -ish
Notes: Extraordinarily late response to yahtzee63's Greatest Movie Lines Challenge. Unbetaed, very short, and in manga canon. Warfic.
i. and our bodies are earth
After the third day in battle, Maes doesn't feel his body anymore. It's not a numbness, really, there's still pain and hunger and thirst and exhaustion, but it's distant, muffled. It's his and yet, it's not.
He thinks he can almost see himself, from outside his body, from somewhere that isn't his own two eyes. His body is well-trained; it doesn't really need him. It can go through the motions of war without him. Load, aim, fire, repeat.
The gun he carries does not really belong to him. To his body maybe, but not to him. It feels strange (yet also familiar) when he runs his (yet also not-his) fingers over the weapon, like a distorted echo of real sensation.
But when the shooting starts, his body knows exactly when and how to pull the trigger.
ii. and our thoughts are clay
You aren't required to think in war. You're not really even allowed to think. Roy has learned this through experience.
He goes where they point him, snaps his fingers when they tell him to, does his job without question like a good little soldier. It's easier that way, no mess, no fuss, no unpleasant feeling at the pit of his stomach that this is wrong.
Roy knows well enough to keep his head down and his mouth shut. To let the higher-ups think for him.
He doesn't need his mind. It would only get in the way.
iii. and we eat and sleep with death
It's never gentle between them, but it's never quite rough either. The only word that comes close to describing it is desperate.
They make no vows, no pronouncements, no promises. There are no declarations, no definitions of what this is, of what this means to them.
They're not quite sure themselves.
It's so tangled up in everything else, the war, the past, the strange emptiness they've become. So much so that it would only hurt them more to try to pull it all apart. It's become a game, almost, how to dodge the question of what it really is. To dance around the questions they both have.
It's not that they're lying to one another (and how can they do that without words?) but it's not as if they're being completely honest, either.
Apart, Maes pretends he doesn't feel and Roy pretends he doesn't think. And when they're together, Roy pretends that he does not taste the blood on Maes' lips, and Maes pretends he does not taste the ash on Roy's.
And as always, the silence remains. The white elephant in the room.
But this is their life now, and to acknowledge that it has changed would be to acknowledge that they have changed.
So they ignore it. And they will continue to ignore it. Until it consumes them both. Until there is nothing left of them besides earth, clay and death.