Fandom: Fullmetal Alchemist
Characters: Ed, Al, and a cat
Setting: No idea.
Summary: The Elric brothers are faced with a formidable opponent.
Word Count: 613
Written For: jordannamorgan’s prompt ‘Fullmetal Alchemist, Alphonse (in armor or human form): misadventures in giving a pill/medicine to a cat,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Fullmetal Alchemist, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Hiromu Arakawa.
“It’s simple, big brother,” Al had insisted, faced with the task of medicating the cat. “I don’t know why you’re making such a meal of it.”
Ed had come off rather the worst in the battle so far, scratched by sharp claws and bitten more than once. Being a State Alchemist obviously didn’t prepare one for the schizophrenic behaviour of the average cat. One moment it was all friendly, purring and rubbing its head against his arm, the next it would be a whirling dervish, all teeth and claws and banshee wailing.
“Well.” Ed folded his arms across his chest defensively. “If you think it’s so easy, why don’t you do it?”
“Alright,” Al had agreed amiably. “I’ll show you how it’s done. First you need a cloth, like this.” He snatched the cloth off a nearby small table, his armoured hands astonishingly dexterous considering their size. Shaking the cloth out, he spread it on the floor in front of him. “There. Now for the cat.”
Curious, the small tabby had wandered over to see what was going on, and she put up no resistance at all when Al picked her up. He scratched her head gently with one finger.
“Now, all I have to do is put the cat on the cloth and wrap her in it,” he explained patiently, matching his actions to his words. Placing the cat in the middle of the cloth, he let go of her to pick up the edges. The cat clearly had other ideas about what should happen next and promptly fled, vanishing under the bed.
“Simple, huh?” asked Ed, chortling gleefully.
“She’s fast,” was Al’s only response before he went to retrieve the cat.
For his second try, he held the cat in place on the cloth and managed to wrap both her and his own arm up in it, then found it was impossible to hold the cat, open its mouth and insert the pill with one hand. Back to the drawing board. The cat vanished under the bed again as soon as she was unwrapped, hissing and spitting her displeasure. Ed was no help; he was too busy rolling on the floor laughing.
Cat retrieved again and held firmly on the cloth, this time Al managed to bundle her up without including his arm in the squirming parcel. Tucking her under one arm, he prised her jaws open carefully, and with a wriggle, she pulled her head inside the cloth wrapping. If anything, Ed seemed to find that even more hilarious. Al refused to let his mounting frustration show. This should be easy; he wasn’t going to let a small cat beat him!
Ten minutes later, with the cat freshly wrapped and the cloth tight around her neck so she couldn’t hide her head again, Al coaxed her mouth open and dropped the pill in, making sure it went as far back as possible. He was slightly hampered by the size of his fingers, but that hardly mattered. Finally, the job was done.
“See? Told you it was simple!”
“Okay, I’m impressed,” Ed admitted.
Setting the bundled cat on the floor, Al let her loose; she shook herself with an air of injured dignity, and promptly spat the pill out.
The brothers looked from the pill to the cat, and then to each other.
“Right,” said Ed, “this means war! I’ll get the cat, you get the cloth; we’re not letting a cat get the better of us!” And with that, he launched himself after the tabby, diving head first under the bed.
Al shook his head. He just hoped no one else ever heard about this. They’d never live it down!