Roy was not normally keen on work being brought to the table during mealtimes. However, from the day a particularly grumpy blond alchemist came barging into his personal life, Roy decided he might as well get use to it. Edward tended to be a quiet reader, after all - save for the occasional curse when drops of hot coffee spilled onto his lap when he wasn’t paying attention.
This morning was a little different, though.
For one, Edward was talking to himself. Roy watched with toast half-hanging out of his mouth as the young man before him muttered with varying degrees of frustration, scribbling onto a loose sheet of paper. Ed’s food remained untouched as well, which was alarming at best.
"Edward," Roy said. After a few moments of silence, he added, "What are you doing?"
Ed’s eyes did not leave the page. “Makin’ something,” he said flatly.
"Mind if I ask what?" Roy asked, fighting the urge to smile.
Ed ducked his head down and lazily traced an arc on the page, still refusing to meet Roy’s gaze. He muttered something inaudible.
"Sorry? Didn’t catch that."
"Uh. It’s just a thing I do when I’m bored." Ed began drawing over the same line half-heartedly, warping its neat curves with thickened edges.
Roy straightened in his seat and peered across the table. It looked like an array of some sort; the design was far too complex for him to make out the details, but the elements he recognised seemed like odd choices to put together on a transmutation circle.
"What on earth is that for?"
Edward hunched protectively over his work. “It’s for fun,” he said defensively. “Like I said, I only do this when I’m bored.”
"That’s not what I… Ed, what does it actually do?" Roy fought hard to stop a grin from creeping into his face. For all of his usual bravado, Edward was easily embarrassed.
Ed drew in deep breath. “It’s non-functional, it’s not supposed to work and I make stuff like this to see how far I can go with it,” he babbled, “but in general, it’s… uh. It’s for time travel.”
Roy almost inhaled his toast in a sudden fit of laughter. “Sorry, what?”
"Oh for fucksake, I knew you’d be a bastard about it," Edward snapped. "Like I said, it’s just something I do that’s completely pointless and impossible, but also fun. I like to see how far I can go with it."
"Before you get to the part where it’s impossible?"
Edward sighed. “Essentially, yes.” He waited for Roy’s reaction, possibly in anticipation of a snarky comment. When he received none, he lowered his head somewhat dejectedly and continued to add new and confusing lines to the array.
Roy was just beginning to feel a little guilty when an idea occurred to him. “You know, time travel is a bit silly. I was never really a fan of the concept, so-“
"Roy, I swear to god-"
"-don’t you think teleportation is a little more interesting?"
Edward paused. “Teleportation,” he said slowly, considering the word. Suddenly his eyes widened. “Yeah, teleportation!” He flipped the paper over and began constructing another shape, scrawling a loose circle that reached the edges of the page.
"You know Ed," said Roy, "ordinary alchemists have probably tried to make this already, and I’m fairly certain they all failed."
"Ordinary alchemists," Edward scoffed, and Roy couldn’t help but laugh.