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Fic - "ISHBAL! The Musical! (Act II)"

Title: ISHBAL! The Musical! (Act II)
Author: colonel_bastard
Fandom: Fullmetal Alchemist [manga].
Word Count: 5355
Rating: PG-13
Characters: Almost everyone who ever appears in the Ishbal flashback (even the soldier chorus), and one OC.
Summary: A musical about Ishbal.
Warnings: Swearing, slash, violence, death. You know, all the usual Ishbal stuff.
Notes: I hope you enjoyed the intermission, folks, 'cause we're back for more. In case you missed it, Act I can be found HERE. Enjoy!



ACT II

SCENE ONE


As the curtain rises on the Amestrian camp, the soldiers are already in mid-celebration. They laugh and carouse as lively tropical music begins to play.

ISN’T IT GREAT?
(to the tune of Under the Sea from The Little Mermaid)

DAMIANO
The party is just beginning
Too bad we don’t have some beers

RICHARD
I love it when we are winning
It’s nice after seven years

ALBERTO
Our victory’s all but certain
Now we’ve got the wrath of God

DAMIANO
Let alchemy do the hurtin’
And we’ll be the cheering squad

CHARLIE
Isn’t it great?
Isn’t it great?
Ishbal is reeling
Now that they’re feeling
Dogs of the State
They level cities with a clap
We can lie back and take a nap
Alchemy’s breezy
Makes it so easy
Isn’t it great?

Apart from the others, Kimblee gleefully pulls Mustang aside.

KIMBLEE
Before they would sneer and shove us
In almost an angry mob
But now look, they fucking love us
And hot damn, I love this job

I’ve always been causing mayhem
Now that’s what they pay me for
They want me to scorch and slay them
It’s heaven! I love this war!

Isn’t it great?
Isn’t it great?
What a seduction
Total destruction
Served on a plate
No need to care what people say
There are no rules and we can play
In this together
Birds of a feather
Isn’t it great?

The soldiers come over and lift Kimblee and Mustang up on their shoulders.

SOLDIERS
Birds of a feather
Isn’t it great?
Whoa-oh
Isn’t it great?

CHARLIE
Isn’t it great?

SOLDIERS
Isn’t it great?

CHARLIE
Look at our forces
Charging like horses
Out of the gate

SOLDIERS
Isn’t it great?

CHARLIE
We used to struggle in the sun
Now we just watch the rabbits run
Look at them cower
We’ve got the power
Isn’t it great?

They set Mustang and Kimblee down and Charlie indicates them proudly.

CHARLIE
They kill with a will
Destroy with a joy

SOLDIERS
Defile with a smile
The war is their toy
The brass gave a pass
They’re free for a spree
They’re out and without control

DAMIANO
The chap with the snap
Impressed with his zest

CHARLIE
His name is the Flame
He’s one of the best
There’s Strong-Arm the stud

ALBERTO
And old Iron-Blood

RICHARD
And go, Red Lotus, go!

A big dance party breaks out.

A group of soldiers pretend to be Ishbalan rebels. Charlie snaps at them and they all fake big theatrical deaths. Everyone cheers.

Kimblee pulls Mustang into a sassy rumba. Mustang is not amused and quickly pulls away. Undeterred, Kimblee dances solo.

The music comes back around for another chorus.


CHARLIE
Isn’t it great?

SOLDIERS
Isn’t it great?

CHARLIE
Isn’t it great?

SOLDIERS
Isn’t it great?

CHARLIE
It’s open season
We’ve got a reason
To celebrate

SOLDIERS
Let’s celebrate

CHARLIE/SOLDIERS
All those Ishbalans better hide
We’ve got the heroes on our side

CHARLIE
And any minute
We’re gonna win it

SOLDIERS
Isn’t it great?

CHARLIE
Oh, yeah
Nothing can top it
No one can stop it

SOLDIERS
Isn’t it great?

CHARLIE
Ooo, yes
Thanks to our aces
Weapons with faces
They’re more than willing
To do the killing
Nothing’s the same here
So glad they came here

SOLDIERS
Isn’t it great?

CHARLIE
Isn’t it great?

The song ends with big happy poses.

There’s a weird silence that lasts a little too long.

Suddenly, Armstrong breaks from the formation, coming downstage center to fall to his knees in anguish.


ARMSTRONG
Stop! Please, no more!

The others react in confusion.

HUGHES
What’s wrong, Major?

ARMSTRONG
Can’t you see that this is madness? Can’t you see that you are praising us for the destruction of human lives? This is murder and you’re celebrating!

DAMIANO
What’s wrong with celebrating our victory?

ARMSTRONG
It’s a victory, yes, but at what cost? At what cost? Alchemy was never meant to be used to this way. It was never meant to be an instrument of war!

KIMBLEE
Oh, really? Then why is it so perfect for the job?

ARMSTRONG
I--- I don’t know. But I’m finished.

HUGHES
What?

ARMSTRONG
Strip me of my rank, if you must. Call me a coward. I will not take another life in this way. I’m done.

He stands, shaking but determined, and starts to exit. Kimblee blocks him.

KIMBLEE
You really think running away with your tail between your legs will make you feel any better?

ARMSTRONG
I have no other choice. I cannot stay.

Armstrong exits.

The soldiers left behind glance around uncertainly, the festive mood ruined. Kimblee commands their attention like a ringmaster.


KIMBLEE
That’s fine, boys, pay no attention to that. Cheer up. We’ve got a big show set for tomorrow and I promise plenty of fireworks.

The men cheer as they gradually exit, until only Hughes and Mustang are left onstage.

MUSTANG
What an ugly scene.

HUGHES
Poor bastard.

MUSTANG
He’s a coward, running away before the job is done.

HUGHES
Sometimes I wish I was brave enough to do the same.

MUSTANG
Do what?

HUGHES
Get the hell out of here. I’ve got a great life waiting for me back home. A normal life. The sooner I can get there, the better.

MUSTANG
Well, desertion is not the answer. Armstrong just couldn’t handle the pressure. Not that you were any help.

HUGHES
Excuse me?

MUSTANG
I’m saying that this is partly your fault.

HUGHES
My fault? What the hell are you talking about?

MUSTANG
If you hadn’t gotten the men fixated on the fact that we’re weapons, maybe the pressure wouldn’t have been so bad.

HUGHES
Hey, I was just doing what you wanted. You wanted the men to love you.

MUSTANG
Not because I’m a killer!

HUGHES
What else could they love you for, Roy? You kill people. That’s all you do.

MUSTANG
Don’t say it like that, like it’s some kind of hobby. You have no idea what it’s like for me---

HUGHES
Oh, boy, here we go again, the angst of the alchemist---

MUSTANG
Don’t you dare mock me!

HUGHES
I can’t help it, you make it so easy.

MUSTANG
Shut your goddamn mouth before I---

HUGHES
Before you what? Snap your fingers? Wow, Roy, you’re right, you’re really suffering over here.

FULL OF SHIT
(to the tune of I Cain’t Say No from Oklahoma!)

HUGHES
I tell you what, I’ve had enough of hearing you complain
Now it’s my turn so you don’t even start
You whine about how no one else can understand your pain
You won’t be happy till you break my heart
I want to help but you won’t let me try
You say you’re under pressure
So am I!

Yo, Roy, I think you’re full of shit
Now I can finally see
Alchemy doesn’t change a bit
You’re nothing better than me

So the whole wide world should pity you
Because you’ve killed so many with a snap
You forget that I’ve killed people, too
And I survived so you can cut the crap

Go on and throw your hissy fit
Then dry your tears with steel wool
That’s not a trick you can pull
I can see straight through your bull
You’re full of shit

Hughes starts to exit, but Mustang grabs his arm and stops him.

MUSTANG
Precious little you
Oh, your heart is so tender
You moral defender
Precious little you
Got yourself a girl and she’s one in a million
You’re still a civilian
Precious little you
Got yourself a dream for a marvelous life
What a marvelous wife she’ll make
Bragging that you’re still such a normal guy
Give me a break

Buddy, I think you’re full of shit
Whine all you want but it’s true
Soldiering is a perfect fit
For all the weasels like you

You’re a freak, so let your flag unfurl
Boy, double-crossing suits you to a T
Write your letters to your darling girl
Then think of darling while you’re fucking me

Nobody likes a hypocrite
Sleeping around on his mate
Promise yourself you’ll go straight
Deep down, you know it’s too late
You’re full of shit

As the song ends, the two men glare at each other, then exit in opposite directions.

SCENE TWO

The open desert. Night. Hawkeye and Yasmin sit side by side, gazing at the sky.

YASMIN
The stars are so lovely tonight.

HAWKEYE
In Amestris, we’ve decided that we see certain shapes in the stars. Each shape has a story. They were all decided hundreds of years before I was born, and now when I look into the sky, I’m not allowed to see anything other than what I’ve been told I should see. It used to make me so angry that I couldn’t make up stories of my own.

YASMIN
My people have a story that all of the stars are just friends of the moon. They’re nothing special, in no special order--- they just exist as a chorus. I used to feel that way. Like I was just one of thousands of stars, no different from the others, my only purpose to sit patiently in the sky and watch the moon.

HAWKEYE
It’s funny how traditions can do that. Take away all the magic from something until it’s boring and familiar.

YASMIN
We should start our own tradition.

HAWKEYE
In our own country.

YASMIN
How about this. Every star is actually a footprint, left behind by the moon as she dances across the sky. Even though they look the same every night, they are actually a tiny bit different each time, since the moon is not bound by tradition and history, but makes a new story for herself at every sunset.

HAWKEYE
Beautiful.

They kiss.

YASMIN
Before I met you, I thought I would never be able to change. But now…

SINCE I FOUND YOU
(to the tune of If I Loved You from Carousel)

YASMIN
Since I found you
All of the past has been swept away
And I’m finally free
Since I found you
I can begin with a bright new day
War has no hold on me
Years I spent waiting for the sun to rise
Now I can see tomorrow in your eyes
Now, beside you
Here in your arms is where I will stay
Here I always will be
Now I found you
Since I found you

HAWKEYE
As a soldier at arms
Blinders on my eyes
I knew nothing other than the war
But then I saw you dancing beneath the dusty skies
And the fighting didn’t matter any more
Since I found you

And now I hope you see
Just how much you mean to me

Since I found you
All of the past has been swept away
And I’m finally free
Since I found you
I can begin with a bright new day
War has no hold on me

YASMIN
Years I spent waiting for the sun to rise

HAWKEYE
Now I can see tomorrow in your eyes

YASMIN/HAWKEYE
Now, beside you
Here in your arms is where I will stay
Here I always will be
Now I found you
Since I found you

As the song ends, they embrace.

Eventually, Hawkeye pulls away reluctantly.


HAWKEYE
I should get back to my post.

YASMIN
And I should return to camp before I’m missed.

They stand and almost separate.

YASMIN
Riza---

HAWKEYE
Yes?

YASMIN
I love you.

Hawkeye takes a moment, profoundly moved.

HAWKEYE
And I love you, Yasmin.

They kiss, start to separate, then kiss one more time before Hawkeye exits.

Alone, Yasmin starts to exit in the opposite direction--- just as the Priest enters.


YASMIN
Akhi rama!

PRIEST
Yasmin, what have you done?

Yasmin falls to her knees, terrified, as the Priest looms over her.

PRIEST
How dare you consort with an Amestrian? You profane yourself before Ishbala!

YASMIN
You don’t understand!

PRIEST
I understand that she is an Amestrian and therefore she is our enemy.

YASMIN
No, akhi rama, that’s not true.

PRIEST
Silence! I should have you punished for this betrayal, this unthinkable treachery!

YASMIN
Very well. I have done no wrong and I am not afraid.

PRIEST
You have strayed from the will of God!

YASMIN
I can serve God and still have love. They are the same.

The Priest is enraged by her calm. He hesitates, then removes the rifle slung over his shoulder. He throws it at her feet.

PRIEST
Prove that you are still a servant of Ishbala.

YASMIN
What do you ask of me?

PRIEST
Tomorrow we fight. You will take the life of at least one Amestrian soldier. His blood will prove your loyalty.

YASMIN
Akhi rama---

PRIEST
Do not argue. It is already more mercy than you deserve.

He exits.

Yasmin pulls the rifle into her hands and tests the weight of it. It’s heavier than she imagined.


SCENE THREE

Ominous drums bring us into---

THE FINAL BATTLE
(set to The Siege of the City of Kings from The Lord of the Rings)

Once again, the Ishbalans and the Amestrians clash in full force. The action is huge and sweeping.

Soldiers slam into each other, leaping and rolling, wrestling violently for control.

Amidst the chaos, Yasmin appears, clutching the rifle. She’s panicking.


YASMIN
Riza? Riza, are you here?

She disappears back into the fray.

In one corner of the battle, the Priest has come face to face with Kimblee. They fight, the Priest’s aggressive attacks preventing Kimblee from an alchemic maneuver.


KIMBLEE
This one’s got a lot of spirit! I like that!

PRIEST
Amestrian devil!

They clash. Kimblee manages to throw the Priest off him long enough to bring his hands together.

KIMBLEE
Whoops! Too bad!

There’s a burst of light and the sound of an explosion. When the smoke clears, the Priest is staggering back, clutching his arm.

He vanishes, along with Kimblee, consumed by the battle.

Finally, the terrible moment of truth. While the battle rages upstage in the background, downstage center, Hughes and Yasmin collide. They immediately point their rifles at each other.

The moment drags on. Neither one of them can pull the trigger. They stand, each looking down the barrel of a gun, paralyzed with indecision.


HUGHES
Goddamn it. You look just like her.

He smiles sadly, lowering his gun.

HUGHES
Gracia.

He throws away his rifle and holds up his hands.

HUGHES
I can’t do it.

Yasmin, breathing hard, doesn’t know what to do. She trembles.

Mustang emerges from the fray in time to see this tableau. He freezes.


YASMIN
God, forgive me!

Yasmin pulls the trigger. The bullet rips into Hughes’s shoulder and he falls backwards, hitting the ground hard.

MUSTANG
No!

Mustang races forward, pulls Hughes into his arms.

MUSTANG
Maes? Maes, please! Come on, stay with me!

Heartbroken, Yasmin throws down her own rifle.

MUSTANG
Maes! Come on! Maes!

YASMIN
I’m sorry.

He looks up at her, blind with rage.

YASMIN
Please. Forgive me.

Mustang slowly rises to his feet. He raises a hand, fingers poised to snap.

Hawkeye arrives and stops dead in her tracks when she sees what has happened.


HAWKEYE
Mustang, wait! Don’t!

It’s a standoff. Yasmin, unarmed, waits. Mustang, shaking with anger, can’t quite do it. Hawkeye, helpless, holds up her hands in a calming gesture.

HAWKEYE
Mustang, please. Don’t do it. Please. You can’t.

A moment of terrible stillness.

Suddenly, Hughes surges to life, clutching at his wound and gasping for air.

Mustang glances down, his trance broken. Savagely, vengefully, he snaps, lashing out.


HAWKEYE
No!

A blaze of light. Yasmin falls. Hawkeye rushes to her side.

The music has ended. Only the distant sounds of battle can be heard.

Mustang drops to his knees, fumbling to take Hughes’s grasping hands in his own.


MUSTANG
Maes? Maes, I’m here.

HUGHES
Roy--- I can’t--- I’m sorry---

MUSTANG
Hang on, I’m gonna get you out of here.

Mustang slings Hughes’s good arm over his shoulder and hauls him up to his feet, dragging him along. They exit together.

The battle fades away, all the combatants exiting, until there is silence.

The only thing left onstage is Hawkeye cradling Yasmin in her arms.


GOODBYE, TOMORROW
(to the tune of So Anyway from Next to Normal)

HAWKEYE
But what about tomorrow?
The promises we made?
Remember what we planned
You said you’d take my hand
I just don’t understand
And I’m afraid

YASMIN
I promised you tomorrow
I’m sorry it can’t be
I thought that we could go
I wish it could be so
But I want you to know
You set me free

You taught me to be stronger
And hope for something more
You taught me how to see beyond
The shadows of the war

You taught me to be happy
In ways I’d never known
And though I’m facing death, I know
I’m not alone

HAWKEYE
My heart’s so close to breaking
I feel like I could die
I don’t know if I even have the strength
To say goodbye
But even if my strength is gone
I’ve got to try

I’ll do it for tomorrow
Because I love you still
I’ll always hold you near

YASMIN
And now I have no fear
Although I feel the chill

HAWKEYE/YASMIN
I’ll always hold you near
There’s nothing left to fear

YASMIN
I promise I’ll be here
Be strong

HAWKEYE
I will

Yasmin dies. Hawkeye holds her and weeps.

The lights fade to black.


SCENE FOUR

An Amestrian medical tent. Several wounded soldiers lay about on cots in various stages of consciousness.

One soldier, still fully conscious, is being stitched up by Dr. Knox. There’s no anesthetic and he howls in agony. Knox ignores him, smoking a cigarette as he works.

On the cot nearest him, Hughes wakes up, his wound bandaged.


HUGHES
Ugh… where am I? Am I dead?

KNOX
I’ve got good news and bad news.

HUGHES
What?

KNOX
The bad news is you’re still in Ishbal. The good news is you’re still alive.
(pause)
Wait, those are both bad news.

HUGHES
What happened?

KNOX
Your Flame Alchemist buddy dragged you in here after burning a path through the skirmish. Thought he was gonna roast me too if I didn’t get you fixed up. I complied, obviously.

He makes a deadpan gesture around the medical tent.

KNOX
Ta-da.

He returns to working on the whimpering soldier.

KNOX
Soon you’ll be right as rain and you can get back to fighting.

HUGHES
I wish you hadn’t said that.

KNOX
Oh, really?

HUGHES
I’ve already done so much fighting. So much--- killing. I just want it to be over.

The thought of going back to war finally catches up with him, and Hughes starts to weep.

Knox rolls his eyes hugely.


KNOX
You guys are all the same. Blubbering like babies over the lives you’ve taken in combat. Waste of energy, if you ask me.

He shrugs and continues stitching. Occasionally, he addresses his squirming patient, ordering him to shut up.

THE BEST CURE FOR ISHBAL
(to the tune of The Worst Pies in London from Sweeney Todd)

KNOX
God
What a joke, ain’t it funny
It really makes me
Sick
I mean it makes me laugh
I mean isn’t that the point of a war
Right?
Did you think that you’d be holding hands and strolling through the park?

Did it come as a surprise, sir?
Were you not prepared to handle all the stress?
(to the patient)
Oh, settle down
(to Hughes)
It’s no wonder you’re a mess
Wanna hear my secret?
Pay attention
(to the patient)
Shut your trap!

(to Hughes)
You should close your eyes, sir
You should plug your ears and throw away your heart
If you ask me, that’s the only thing that’s smart

Some say apathy is wrong, sir
But I think that it’s the best cure for Ishbal
If you’re gonna have to go and blow up
A city
Then throw up
Your pity
The best cure for Ishbal
Simple as can be
The best cure for Ishbal
If you doubt it, look at me

Hughes looks downright appalled. Knox shrugs.

KNOX
It does sound disgusting
I’ll gladly concede it
It takes some adjusting
But out here you’ll need it
The best cure for Ishbal

All this crying is a waste of time
Waste of air
Waste of water
Come on
And you call yourself a man
Soldiers act like it’s a crime
Get a grip
It’s a job
Would you rather die instead?

You may think that you’re too nice, sir
But you better nip the niceness in the bud
You’ll be saying sorry while you’re spitting blood
Let me tell you something
Being nice ain’t renowned
When you’re six feet underground

Follow my advice, sir
Ditch the niceties and turn yourself to steel
It’s much easier when you forget to feel

Put it simply: I don’t care, sir
I don’t care and that’s the best cure for Ishbal
And I sleep just fine at night

It adds up so neatly
The high cost of livin’
Just shut down completely
And take what you’re given

You won’t feel a thing
And take it from me
It’s the best cure for Ishbal
Ah, sir
I don’t care
I don’t care

As the song ends, Knox finishes his stitches. He slaps the wound in a congratulatory fashion and the patient yowls.

SCENE FIVE

The Amestrian military camp. Mustang rips off his gloves, almost throws them to the ground, then reconsiders and puts them in his pocket.

Hawkeye enters.

They regard each other for a long, chilly moment.

She continues through and exits again without saying a word.

Kimblee enters.


KIMBLEE
There are you are, old sport! Care to join me for a glass of whiskey? Officers’ privilege. Actually, alchemists’ privilege.

MUSTANG
I don’t want anything to do with it.

KIMBLEE
Why not?

MUSTANG
I don’t deserve it.

KIMBLEE
But you went above and beyond the call of duty. That deserves a drink.

MUSTANG
Forget it.

KIMBLEE
It’s really a shame. They say we’ve only got one more region left to clear and then it’s over.

MUSTANG
Good! The sooner, the better.

KIMBLEE
Don’t tell me you won’t miss it.

MUSTANG
Miss what? Being a killer? Destroying cities?

KIMBLEE
Exactly!

MUSTANG
I highly doubt it.

KIMBLEE
You don’t have to lie for my benefit, Mustang. We’re two of a kind, we are.

A CERTAIN KIND OF PERSON
(to the tune of You Could Drive a Person Crazy from Company)

KIMBLEE
You can call yourself a martyr
You can say it ain’t your fault
You could try a little harder
‘Cause you never shouted “Halt!”
You can say you followed orders only
That’s very well
Let me ask you, Roy, do you get lonely
Hiding in your shell?

Takes a certain kind of person
One who gets a certain thrill
Takes a certain kind of person
To use alchemy to kill
I use a clap
And you a snap
Both of us loved wiping Ishbal off the map
Embrace it
You’re that kind of person
You’re a truly crazy person yourself

Mustang tries to fight back.

MUSTANG
When a soldier follows orders in the middle of war
The soldier can’t be held up to blame
And that’s what I have sworn to do, no little or more
When I took on the title of Flame

I can’t believe that you could take the slightest of pride
In all the awful things that we’ve done
The crazy ones are those who feel the lightest inside
And as of now my heart weighs a ton

Kimblee’s really in the swing of it now, and he dances nimbly around Mustang.

KIMBLEE
Wake up
And face yourself at last
Wake up
You know you had a blast
Wake up
You went beyond commands
Wake up
The blood is on your hands

MUSTANG
I don’t want to hear it
That’s a lie

KIMBLEE
Where’s your fighting spirit?
Just try and don’t be shy
Buddy baby buddy maybe buddy

You can call yourself a victim
You can call yourself a saint
But you knocked ‘em down and then you kicked ‘em
So a victim, Roy, you ain’t
Just accept that you’re a killer, then you
Will soon agree
That you feel a whole lot better when you
See you’re just like me

Takes a certain kind of person
Who’s a monster to the core
Takes a certain kind of person
That’s what alchemy is for
The war is done
The war is won
And who’d have thought the war would be so goddamn fun?
You loved it
You’re that kind of person
You’re that kind of
Alchemy for hire
Kill ‘em all with fire
Crazy person yourself

Mustang exits in a hurry, horrified. Kimblee addresses the audience.

KIMBLEE
Sorry is for pussies and I’m giving it up!

He strikes a jazzy pose.

SCENE SIX

The Amestrian military camp. Night. Hawkeye watches the stars.

Hughes enters, his arm in a sling.


HUGHES
Hey.

Hawkeye brushes away tears.

HAWKEYE
Hey.

HUGHES
So--- we’re almost there.

HAWKEYE
I know.

They watch the stars together.

HUGHES
Listen. I know you hate him right now---

HAWKEYE
Don’t.

HUGHES
But you have to believe me when I say that Mustang is our best chance to start making changes.

HAWKEYE
What do you mean?

HUGHES
He’s seen a lot. He’s messed up. But I know Roy. Once he gets his feet back under him, he’s gonna want to make sure this never happens again. He hated this war just as much as you and me. He can make things different.

HAWKEYE
What do you want from me, Hughes?

HUGHES
Mustang is headed for the top. He’s gonna need all the support under him he can get. I’m asking for your help.

HAWKEYE
Help him. Help Mustang.

HUGHES
Even if you hate the man, you can’t hate what he believes in. What he stands for. If you won’t do it for him, do it for that. Do it for a better future.

HAWKEYE
I thought I had a future. It slipped right through my fingers.

HUGHES
Consider this Plan B.

He offers his good hand for a handshake. She hesitates, then accepts it.

HUGHES
Welcome aboard, Hawkeye.

SCENE SEVEN

A red sunrise. Mustang, alone.

Hawkeye enters.


HAWKEYE
Major Mustang.

MUSTANG
Cadet.

HAWKEYE
I wanted you to know that I had a conversation with Captain Hughes. About your future. About our future.

MUSTANG
What do you mean?

HAWKEYE
He told me about your plans. How you’re going to change this country for the better.

MUSTANG
I don’t know what you’re---

HAWKEYE
You made me a promise on my father’s grave. You said you would use this alchemy for the good of our country. I’m still waiting for you to fulfill that promise.

MUSTANG
I don’t know what I can do. I’ve already wasted it.

HAWKEYE
You owe me, Mustang.

He pulls out his gloves and studies the array on the back.

MUSTANG
You know--- I’m starting to wish I’d never studied alchemy at all. I’m starting to wish I had just stayed home and let your father takes his secrets to his grave.

HAWKEYE
It’s too late for that, Sir. What’s done is done. You might as well use that knowledge for good.

Pause. He tries to smile.

MUSTANG
Very well, Cadet. A promise is a promise.

She salutes.

HAWKEYE
I’ll watch your back, Sir. The rest is up to you.

She exits.

Alone, Mustang sadly pulls on his gloves. He addresses the audience.


GONE TOO FAR
(to the tune of Mr. Cellophane from Chicago)

MUSTANG
If someone had a magic box
And knowledge opened all the locks
And inside all the answers lie
You’d open it

If someone had a magic book
That changed your life with just one look
And all you had to do was try
You’d open it

Before you know it, then you know too much
Men were meant to look but not to touch
The cat was killed by curiosity
So have a care
Or you’ll end up like
Me

He begins to sway.

MUSTANG
Alchemy
It was alchemy
That’s what ruined me
Too much alchemy
It’s simply too much power
For one person
And now I’ve gone too far

He begins a sad little soft-shoe dance complete with sad little jazz hands.

MUSTANG
I tell ya
Alchemy
It was alchemy
That’s what ruined me
Too much alchemy
It’s simply too much power
For one person
And now I’ve gone too far

He tries to compose himself.

MUSTANG
Suppose you found a golden thread
And if you followed where it led
You’d know what no one had before
You’d follow it

Suppose the order came one day
That sent you somewhere far away
A soldier in an ugly war
You’d follow it

A man who plays with fire will get burned
A man cannot forget what he has learned
And by the time you realize your fate
You’ve lost your bearings
You can’t help it
It’s too late

The music mocks him. He returns, helplessly, to his sad little dance.

MUSTANG
That’s what ruined me
Goddamn alchemy
Because it’s too much power
For one person
And now I’ve gone too far

He moves downstage, growing louder, more insistent. The lights around him dim until he’s left in a spotlight on a dark stage.

MUSTANG
I tell ya
Alchemy
All this alchemy
Be the death of me
Too much alchemy
It’s simply too much power
For one person
And now I’ve gone too far

He falls to his knees.

MUSTANG
Sorry but I’ve gone too far

As the song ends, the spotlight fades back to normal lighting.

Mustang remains on his knees, lost.

Upstage, a soldier runs through, rejoicing.


CHARLIE
It’s over! The war is over! We can finally go home!

The soldiers react with joy. While Mustang stays downstage center, they break down the tents and clear away the supplies, laughing and shouting excitedly.

The camp gradually dissolves.

Then Ishbal dissolves.

Mustang is left on a completely bare stage. He clambers to his feet and shrugs at the audience.


USED TO THINK
(to the tune of Everybody’s Got the Right (Finale) from Assassins)

MUSTANG
Used to the think that maybe I was a hero
Now I think there’s really nothing to see

Hughes enters, carrying his service pistol.

HUGHES
Thought I’d go and never grieve
Now I know I’ll never leave

MUSTANG/HUGHES
Used to think that maybe I could be free

Hawkeye enters, carrying her rifle.

HAWKEYE
Used to think if I survive I’ll be happy

MUSTANG/HUGHES
Wish that I could be happy

Armstrong enters, wearing his gauntlets.

ARMSTRONG
Now I know my happiness was the fee

MUSTANG/HUGHES
That was the fee

Knox enters with a scalpel.

KNOX
Wash away the sand and grime

Kimblee enters and displays his alchemic tattoos.

KIMBLEE
You can’t wash away the crime

MUSTANG
Just think once upon a time you were free

ALL
We did it

KNOX
Put an end to the war

KIMBLEE
What a blunder

HAWKEYE
Makes you wonder

ALL
We did it

ARMSTRONG
Don’t know what it was for

HUGHES
Going under

MUSTANG
Drowning in the thunder

ALL
We did it

MUSTANG
We can never forget

HUGHES/HAWKEYE
Oh, shit

MUSTANG
Never pay off the debt

ALL
Can’t get out of the net
We can never forget
Forget
Forget
Forget

They fall into a line at the front of the stage, singing directly to the audience.

ALL
Used to think that maybe I could be normal
Now I know it simply wasn’t to be
Just thank God you didn’t die
Don’t look back and don’t ask why
Don’t deserve to even try
To be free
Used to think that maybe I could be free

On the last note, they all slowly raise their respective weapons into the air.

When the music stops, they fire.

Black out.

The curtain comes down.


THE END.


Comments

Haha, yes, the title does carry its own expectations. I'm glad you liked it, thanks for reading and commenting!