Stories by Branch

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I write fanfic–quite a bit of it over time. I tend to wander. On the one hand, you’ll likely find a bit of most any pairing if I stay long enough; on the other, you probably won’t find as much of any favorite as you like. If not, well, hang tight and maybe I’ll come back around to it again some time.

Branch has 636 stories on Ink Burns

Canonicity and the Nature of Fic

You know, I’m right alongside the critics who bemoan all the fic in which the sole and single resemblance between the fic character and canon character is name and possibly coloring. Or, at least, I’m right alongside the idea that this kind of fic should be clearly labled so I can avoid it. But I also see the same people pushing for total canonicity, which I really think is missing the point of fanfic itself.


Heat Prostration

An alternative encounter between Tatsuya and Novem. Kind Of Sort Of Romance, I-3

In the moment Tatsuya breathed out, shoulders falling, hands opening, Novem closed both palms delicately around Tatsuya’s face.


Air Feeds Fire

After Ed has to kill he has to deal with having killed. Divergent Future, Drama With Porn, I-4, faint spoiler ep 25

Edward Elric was not crying.


Circumstances

Roy and Ed find out about the new contract. Porn With Insights and Occasional Purple, I-4.

As the Colonel’s head bent toward him, Ed shoved him off to arm’s length. “You can’t do that! This is a shounen series!” he hissed.


This Time

And after the first time, what happens next? Porn With Insights, I-4.

This time Roy had to track Edward down to his own rooms. He knocked politely on Edward’s door and heard a growl that might have been an invitation to enter, supposing the occupant were a bear disturbed during hibernation.


Gyre

Ed gets answers and questions about Roy’s motives. Drama, I-3.

Edward Elric spent a good deal of his time in libraries, and when his research was going well he rather liked them. Libraries were quiet places where the information you were looking for held still and waited for you to come get it.

Of course, when research was not going well, that became a source of frustration.


Rough

Something about those gloves… Porn Without Plot, mildly kinky, I-4.

Ed rested his head on Roy’s shoulder, trying to gather his senses. But they were all concentrated elsewhere. That rough texture made the lightest touch terribly present, and roused every nerve like a spark that kept flaring.


Under Cover

For the Put Ed In A Dress challenge. Secret missions, entertaining disguises, pissed off Alchemists. Humor, I-2, no spoilers.

Ed paused, pulling the bodice up, and poked at it suspiciously. “This,” he remarked very flatly, “is padded.”


The Upper Hand

Roy muses about his personnel management techniques. Drama, I-2.

It entertained Roy to no end that he could stop one of Edward’s tempers simply by thanking him.


Enough

Ed in a temper, Roy feeling generous. Porn With Purple Insights, I-3.

Ed had his suspicions about any offer Roy Mustang made that sounded like what he wanted. There had to be a catch.


Relaxed

In the National Library. Porn With Insights, I-4.

Ed was shocked. Roy never got like this in public. And now here they were in the National Library.


Gift

Ed finds things out about Roy’s plans, Roy gets a surprise. Plot With Porn, I-4.

Edward’s voice was low and clear. “We’re off script. You know that. Forget the excuses.” He unfolded himself to kneel upright, took Roy’s face between his hands, kissed him.


Gone the Sun

Roy’s memories of his friend. Drama with Angst, I-4, spoiler ep 25.

“I pay attention to everything, Roy. That’s my gift. Yours is to barbecue things that annoy you. Apparently this makes you command-track material.”


Two to be Steady – Part One

How Roy and Hughes might have met and become friends. The starting thought was How did Roy get to be like that? Hughes seemed a reasonable answer. Drama With Occasional Porn, I-3, spoilers eps 3 and 15.

Roy had no idea just what had caused First Lieutenant Maas Hughes to decide that he, Roy, needed a friend.


Two to be Steady – Part Two

How Roy and Hughes might have met and become friends. The starting thought was How did Roy get to be like that? Hughes seemed a reasonable answer. Drama With Occasional Porn, I-3, spoilers eps 3 and 15.

Figuring out Roy Mustang was providing more fun than any two field assignments put together.


Two to be Steady – Part Three

How Roy and Hughes might have met and become friends. The starting thought was How did Roy get to be like that? Hughes seemed a reasonable answer. Drama With Occasional Porn, I-3, spoilers eps 3 and 15.

After the sixth time Maas was accosted in the hall with a more or less subtle inquiry of whether he could please do something about his friend, he decided it might actually be serious and not just Roy practicing his intimidation techniques.


Two to be Steady – Part Four

How Roy and Hughes might have met and become friends. The starting thought was How did Roy get to be like that? Hughes seemed a reasonable answer. Drama With Occasional Porn, I-3, spoilers eps 3 and 15.

“The ones who are crazy are the ones who throw thousands of lives away like a handful of sand in the desert. The ones who exalt destruction and the means of it. The ones who can think that the destruction of a city full of people only trying to keep their lives and homes can be justified in the name of defense. To stop them? That’s sanity.”


Two to be Steady – Part Five

How Roy and Hughes might have met and become friends. The starting thought was How did Roy get to be like that? Hughes seemed a reasonable answer. Drama With Occasional Porn, I-3, spoilers eps 3 and 15.

Yet another crisis averted, Maas congratulated himself. Really, Roy was way too high strung to be allowed to run around without a keeper.


Two to be Steady – Part Six

How Roy and Hughes might have met and become friends. The starting thought was How did Roy get to be like that? Hughes seemed a reasonable answer. Drama With Occasional Porn, I-3, spoilers eps 3 and 15.

At last Roy dragged him off, allegedly to have company with his coffee but more probably to prevent Hawkeye from expressing her frustration with Maas’ restlessness too directly.


Whose Smut?

One thing I find curious, though, is that the author doesn’t think there has been a debate in the West yet between straight women writing this stuff and gay men protesting the inaccurate appropriation of their sexuality. Admittedly, the more vocal rounds of it have taken place in slash rather than yaoi, but there’s enough overlap of authors that the effects have spread to both.


The Seconds’ Club

Une and Hawkeye unwind after long days at work. Porn With Insights, I-4, spoilers ep 16 FMA. Timeframe: ep 16 FMA, post ep 23 indeterminate GW.

This, after all, was what the Second’s Club was for—so that the people who actually kept affairs running could vent before they want completely around the bend and left their frequently megalomaniac commanders to their own devices.


Sticky

Porn Without Plot, mildly kinky, I-4.

Maybe it was heat-stroke, or maybe simply a measure of true desperation, but the next thought to occur to him was Roy. Roy will at least have a fan going.


Wet

Porn With Insights, I-4.

“No one would think you were over thirty,” he remarked dryly as Roy drew back.


Ever – Chapter One

After a year staying with Winry and Pinako Rockbell, Ed and Al return to Central with Winry to settle for a while. Roy pays them a visit… Drama, I-3

Roy Mustang stood in the street and looked up at a large, though unpretentious, brick house. He had hoped he might not have to come here. But after a year of listening to rumors and whispers, of fielding more and less subtle inquiries, he had finally decided there was no choice after all.

Edward and Alphonse Elric had returned to Central City.


Ever – Chapter Two

Ed makes the decision to continue protecting his brother. Drama, I-3

Ed leaned in the doorway, smiling, relaxing. Even after a year to get used to it the sight of Al in his proper body was enough to wipe away his darkest thoughts.


Ever – Chapter Three

Everyone starts to see the shape of the future. Drama, I-3

A slow and slightly crooked smile took over Maas’ mouth. He leaned against Roy’s shoulder for a second. “You’re too soft hearted for this business, Roy.”


Ever – Chapter Four

Ed gets a closer look at Roy’s job. Drama, I-3

Ed spent the day observing, as directed. Among other things, he observed that most civilian State Alchemists deserved their bad reputation. He had never met so many money-grubbing, recognition-obsessed, amoral flakes in such a short span of time before.


Ever – Chapter Five

Ed starts to learn to play the game. Drama, I-3

Roy had seen such flickers of poise and self-awareness a couple times in the recent past. He was coming to the conclusion that Fullmetal’s legendary temper was less ungovernable than it was something Fullmetal had just never bothered to govern.


Ever – Chapter Six

Ed learns the price that playing can cost. Drama, I-4

Ed was silent for a moment. “What do alchemists do?” he asked at last.

Winry blinked at this apparent non sequitur, but Al understood. “Alchemists work for the good of all,” he recited, eyes shadowed.


Ever – Chapter Seven

Ed’s lessons turn to manipulation. Drama, Humor, I-3

This was the easy part. Edward knew a challenge when he saw one, no matter the context. Roy watched the first reflex straightening of his spine, saw his eyes widen as he took in the actual wording of Roy’s challenge, saw them narrow and watched Edward’s mouth curve up in a scimitar smile.


Ever – Chapter Eight

Ed’s family want him to pay attention to the rest of his life. Drama, I-2

When she dragged him out the door he had thought they might at least go shop for reasonable things, like a supply of screws in thirty-one sizes or a new lathe. But no.


Ever – Chapter Nine

Roy starts to notice Ed growing up. Drama with Romance, I-3

While he worked, Edward’s fire and flamboyance were channeled, honed to an edge that would shame a razor. When they had occasion to debate interpretations, which happened frequently, Edward did so with a ferocity and speed and focused force that delighted Roy, sometimes even provoked him to open laughter.


Ever – Chapter Ten

Ed has his first real-life exercise. Drama, I-3

Three or four years ago he would rather have died, or at least would rather have eaten Winry’s cooking, than admit that Roy’s approval mattered in any way to him.


Ever – Chapter Eleven

Ed and Roy continue on their way to a partnership. Drama, I-3

Ed’s brother still regarded Roy as a threat that Edward should be guarded against, Roy noted. He smiled at Alphonse with approval. That was just the way it should be.


Ever – Chapter Twelve

Ed talks to Hughes about his changing relationship with Roy. Drama with Romance, I-3

When Hughes arrived at their house, mid-morning, with a gleam in his eye, Ed was positive he’d been targeted for something.


Ever – Chapter Thirteen

Roy tries to deal with his changing relationship with Ed. Drama with Romance, I-3

His awareness of Edward’s physical presence was really getting just a bit disconcerting.


Ever – Chapter Fourteen

Roy and Ed finally admit how close they’ve gotten. Drama with Porn, I-3

Roy’s hands came up to settle lightly on his back. “Edward, do you know what you’re offering?”

That induced Ed to look up with a glare. “Oh, tea and cookies, of course, what else could I possibly mean?” he snapped.


Morning – One

How Roy and Ed deal with the way Ever ended. Drama With Romance and Porn, I-3.

Ed woke up wondering why his pillow was such a strange shape.


Morning – Two

How Roy and Ed deal with the way Ever ended. Drama With Romance and Porn, I-3.

On the one hand, the door was merely closed, not locked, and Ed had no intention of sharing this part of his life with anyone else, thank you.

On the other hand… well at the moment the other hand was Roy’s, and it was tracing patterns up his back in a very tempting manner.


Morning – Three

How Roy and Ed deal with the way Ever ended. Drama With Romance and Porn, I-3.

Ed supposed there was some reason for the concern. Ed spent at least half his time at Roy’s house instead of his own. His conversation had become peppered with Roy’s comments even in the man’s absence. And now Al was wondering whether his big brother was about to get his heart broken for him. Al thought that way.


Rare

A pleasant end to a trying day. Porn Without Plot, I-4.

“Next time Hawkeye asks me to go with you for a routine inspection because she’s busy and you know what he’s like, Edward-kun, remind me of this,” he grumbled.


At A Cost

Roy’s choices, soon after the end. Drama, I-4.

Hughes gave him a brisk shake. “Stop that. I’ll always support you, and you know it. And your people will follow you to Hell as many times as you choose to go there. But is there anyone else who can do what he did? Ed the Amazing, Traveling Trouble Magnet, Problems Solved at No Extra Charge?”


Snapshots

A handful of moments: Roy and Hughes at Ishvar. Drama With Occasional Porn and Angst, I-4, spoilers ep 15.

Roy did not normally rise to that kind of bait in public. He had a certain dignity to maintain, and being an Alchemist who had become an officer by default rather than through training didn’t make things any easier. But today he was tired and short on temper, and decided that the shortest distance between two points was to vault the table and tackle Hughes.


Rosin

Roy considers some of the difficulties of his relationship with Ed. Light Purple Drama, I-3.

He knew that it was not a good idea to relax, and still couldn’t seem to stop himself.


The Door

Ed’s choices, two years later. Drama, I-3.

“Nii-san, you’re not our father,” Al murmured.

“But what if I am?” Ed slumped. “I mean, what if this was how it started with him, too? A few trips to the city to pick up something for Mom, and then some trips further away to find some interesting books or talk to scholars, and then he got into something bigger than he could understand, and the next thing you know he’s creating monsters and destroying cities and not giving a damn about his family.”


The Rain

Ed and Roy go for a walk in the rain… at least that was Ed’s intention. Fluffy Drama, I-2.

“I actually like rain, you know,” Roy answered, tone reminiscent. “I used to go out in it all the time when I was little. Especially storms like this. Even when I started specializing, I still liked walking in it. It wasn’t until later that it became,” he paused a moment before finishing, “inadvisable.”


Glow

Ed gets home after a rather rough trip. Fluffy Drama, I-2.

Ed’s fingers were too cold and stiff to fumble around with his keys, so he knocked instead. When Roy opened the door, Ed glared at him.

“I hate being cold, I hate giving reports to stupid Generals, and I hate sleeping on train seats,” he declared, stepping in out of the biting chill.


Muses, Writing and Character Communication

Do my characters really talk to me? Do I hold actual conversations with them?

I mean, when I write it out in muse-babble posts, that’s what it looks like. But in a lot of ways it feels like I’m translating what actually happens, which isn’t verbalization at all.


Sustained

When it comes down to action everyone has to find a way to handle the stress. Plot With Porn, I-4.

“If you die doing this, the way you think you’re going to,” Ed growled, lifting Roy’s chin until they were eye to eye, “I swear I’ll bind your soul to your damn desk, and you’ll spend the rest of eternity buried in paperwork.”


Fiat Roomate

Ed has to deal with a housemate. Drama, I-3.

“All right. I can deal with her fixation on healthy food, Sensei was the same way. It’s probably a female thing.” Ed paused to glance suspiciously at Mustang. He could have sworn the man who terrorized hard-bitten generals every day and twice on Sundays had just squeaked.