Title:What You Wish For
Summary: Ed and Al stumble on to a shop which deals in an unusual sort of merchandise.
Spoilers: Nothing serious for either series.
Word count: 540
Notes: So, one of my larger projects right now is (what will be) a decently long Tsubasa/FMA crossover. This isn't part of that, but the similarity between the ideas of equivalent trade from FMA and Tsubasa's sister series intrigued me enough that they seemed worth exploring a short piece of their own.
Ed wasn’t happy about any of this. He didn’t believe in wishes. He was willing, given the evidence, to admit they existed, even that they worked in the right context, but the same was true of the Fuhrer’s foreign policy. It didn’t mean he had to believe in any of it.
“But you do have a wish, don’t you?” Said Yuuko. “Something you want more than anything else?”
Ed gritted his teeth, but this didn’t seem like the time to be less than truthful. “Al’s body,” he said, and with only a little hesitation added, “and my arm and leg. You can do that?”
“I can do that easily.” Yuuko smiled. “But there must be a price, of course - something of equal value. Someone in your profession must appreciate that, mustn’t they? The art you practice is based upon it.”
“The principle of equivalent trade.” Ed said automatically, although not even the discovery of familiar ground was doing much for his uneasiness. “So? What's the price.”
“Your price is everything you gained from that day. Your aptitude for alchemy, the relationships you have formed since then – and one more thing. You must have nothing more to do with the struggle against the homunculi. They will cease to pursue you, with so much of your power gone, but you must take no part in what will become of them.”
Ed’s eyes widened as far as they were capable of widening. “You bitch.” He snarled. “How the hell is any of that of any value to you?”
“Not to me. But it is all of value to you and your brother. Equivalent value."
Ed’s grimace turned halfway into a grin. There was a sort of poetic genius to it he couldn’t help but admire. "It's not about its value at all, is it? It's about what you're willing to give up for it."
"What value has anything, save the worth that humans place upon it? People are wise to think very carefully about what they truly want most before they ask anything from me.”
“So. Just Al’s body then. What’s the price for that?”
Yuuko maintained her composure as though Al's outburst had never happened. “The same as I just told you, the only exception being, your alchemical ability you may keep.”
“And if I’d asked you to destroy the homunculi, the price would have been any chance to restore our bodies again, wouldn’t it?”
“On the contrary, Edward. The price for the means to achieve that wish would be both that and your other arm and leg.”
Ed gripped his real arm with his mechanical one reflexively. “And the wish to restore our mother? What would have been the price for that?”
“That I could not grant you. The price to restore the dead is too high. Nothing you could give me would be worth enough, but that much you’ve already discovered, haven’t you?”
Ed had to admit, there was part of him that was still tempted to make a deal with this woman. But it was a distant part and nothing more – just one of the voices in your head you learn to ignore long before you grow up half as much as Ed had had to.
“Come on, Al.” He said, then glanced back at Yuuko. “Sorry, but I can’t do any business with you.”
They never went down the road where they found the shop again. It didn’t matter, it wouldn’t have been there for them any longer anyway.