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Fanfic / The Truth Decays

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Edward Elric of Fullmetal Alchemist is somehow dropped into the world of Naruto like a rock into a pond and tries to cope with it, with hysterical results. The fic starts in the "Search For Tsunade" story arc, and almost immediately during the encounter with Naruto and two Akatsuki members, Itachi and Kisame. After that, Edward is promptly arrested and sent to the Interrogation Department, where Hilarity Ensues.


Read it here.

Tropes Associated with The Truth Decays:

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Contains examples both in and out of universe.
  • Androcles' Lion: Edward helps an injured bird that was being tormented by some children. The Bird in question is soon revealed to be a messenger bird from Suna who was attacked while delivering an important message. In return for saving his life and his mission, the bird tips-off Edward on the location of his stolen automail.
  • Artistic License: The effects of laughing gas are heavily exaggerated in the name of Rule of Funny. Ending with an author's note appealing to the reader's Willing Suspensionof Disbelief.
  • Bathroom Break-Out: While on the run, Ed runs into team 10 and Gai. Unaware that Ed has just escaped from prison they try to talk with him. Ed excuses himself to the bathroom and never returns, much to Gai's confusion.
    • Edward's second attempt invoking this trope is less successful. Thanks to Shino's bugs.
    • Edward's third attempt at pulling this is similarly unsuccessful. Ed pretends to take a shower and while the water is running he tries to escape out the window. He is caught almost immediately but pretends to be offended that they would watch him in the shower. Neji points out that he wasn't in the shower, but continuing in such escape attempts is a great way to end up supervised in the bathroom. Also, he's wasting water.
  • Berserk Button:
  • Big Eater: Ed and Naruto. In Ed's case, this actually poses a problem for the medical team after he is critically injured by Itachi; Ed's unusual metabolism plus his connection to Al's body means that he processes blood pills and other medications too quickly for them to take effect and requires twice the amount of nutrients and sugars to stabilize his blood sugar.
  • Big Brother Mentor: Naruto quickly decides that Ed is one of the coolest people he's ever met, and takes advice from him pretty easily. Lee also has a moment of this with Ed, when he gives him some good advice on dealing with the trauma of having his limbs crushed in the Chunin Exams, as well as his fear of something going wrong in surgery.
  • That's One F*cked Up Family : The Hyuga.
  • Body Horror: During an ambush by a Sound ninja, Ed is forced to use deconstruction alchemy when one of the attackers tries to behead Hinata; the end result is a gory mess of pulped organs and limbs and a horrified Team 8.
    • Hotaka having his arm partially deconstructed.
    • Naruto comes across a dying ANBU woman. She stops breathing and has no pulse and Naruto knows that he doesn't have time to find a med-nin. He attempts to administer CPR and her chest caves in, though at that point she was likely already dead. It's disturbing regardless.
    " He pushed down and her chest collapsed in on itself with a hundred brittle snapping sounds like stepping on a bag of cornflakes"
  • Cavalry Betrayal: The ANBU team that seemingly came to back up Hinata and Ed appear to members of ROOT and they subsequently turn on them once Tayuya is incapacitated.
  • Chekhov's Gun
    • The armored doll that Naruto gets for Edward.
    • The note on Hinata's medical chart. The detail that the charts and papers are kept on a clipboard hooked to the end of a patient's hospital bed is noted as far back as chapter 13. In chapter 18 such a clipboard is used by Hinata and Pride to communicate in writing after she has lost her tongue encountering Truth. Rather than confirm Konoha and Pride's assumption that Ed has been taken to the Village Hidden in the Sound, she sends Pride after Danzo. The message that Hinata writes resurfaces again when the Leaf Village investigates Hinata's disappearance; Tipping off Tsunade about Danzo's involvement and giving her the evidence she needs to begin mobilizing against him more actively.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Ed. He knows it, and it gets him into trouble more often than it pays off, but he can't help it—he's Ed.
    • He tries to ignore it, he really does. But every time this happens he starts hearing Al's voice telling him that he needs to help.
  • Closed Circle: Ed can't just walk away from Konoha and get the hell away from the ninja madness because, to show Tsunade how much Danzo cares about her decision to give Ed Diplomatic Impunity (read: jack shit), ROOT places a Caged Bird Seal on Ed that will give him borderline-fatal levels of pain if he so much as gets close to the town's limits, let alone tries to cross them. When Tsunade confronts Danzo about it, he just (rather smugly) tells her that he was able to convince everybody else that Ed was a Wild Card too dangerous to allow to leave for the good of Konoha.
  • Clothing Damage: Ed has a transmutation circle in the palm of his left hand that allows him to deconstruct matter, like Scar. So far, he's only used it to destroy Morino Ibiki's coat and Tsunade's shirt.
  • Colliding Criminal Conspiracies: Recent chapters have seen Orochimaru, Danzo, and Pride's evil plots all bumping up against each other and derailing in a spectacular 3-way collision. Arguably a 4-way collision, if you include the non-ROOT elements in Konohagakure.
  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: Noticeably averted in the sound four's battle in Konoha. Powerful they might be, but you can only be swarmed by so many ninjas before things start spinning out of control...
    • with exception to Kimimaro who more than pulls his weight. It takes someone equally badass to take him down.
  • Creepy Child: Gaara. Despite him no longer being the Ax-Crazy Serial Killer he was during the Chunnin Exams. With his Heel–Face Turn being as recent as it is, his siblings are still noticeably wary of him. Something like cannibalism is seen as welcome subject change out of awkward conversational territory to him, and he doesn't seem to realize that others might feel otherwise.
  • Culture Clash: A theme throughout the story, (and present in the author's other crossover works as well for that matter). It generates drama and humor, and a lot of thought is given to exploring how two high-fantasy magic systems would function within the same universe, and how the practitioners of said magic systems might react to each other.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Fighting Itachi doesn't go particularly well for Edward or Sasuke.
  • Did We Just Have Tea with Cthulhu? The shinigami pays Edward a visit in the hospital after Ed sets off his seal by getting too close to the village wall.
  • Diplomatic Impunity: Tsunade tries to invoke this by declaring Edward an ambassador of Amestris. In doing so she hoped to grant him amnesty and to protect him from harassment by her political rivals.(i.e. Danzo) It doesn't work. They just go behind her back and brand him with a Caged Bird Seal.
  • Disabled Snarker: Ed is the obvious example. In their discussion of Lee's own injury and potential disability, Ed notes that Lee isn't sassy enough for this position.
  • Evil-Detecting Dog: The dog at the vet clinic is "very good at sniffing out lies," and interrogates Ed when he brings in an injured Nin-bird. Fortunately for Ed, it's less good at sniffing out which true admissions have been misconstrued.
    • Akamaru definitely feels a sort of way about the sent Pride leaves behind in Hinata's hospital room.
  • Eye Scream: Ed's use of flame alchemy not only "charbroiled" Sasuke,note  the explosion also left him temporarily blind.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: Naruto and Edward. After their run-in with Kisame and Itachi they are quick to come to the other's defense, despite not knowing each other very well. Naruto in particular has become very attached.
  • For Want of a Nail. Ed's presence in the Naruto world prevents Sasuke from being Mind Raped by Itachi and from choosing to join Orochimaru. This will drastically change the course of his life and the lives of many others by extension.
  • Fridge Horror: Pride's language fluency in the Elemental Nations, while Roy Mustang (who Pride is possessing), can barely string a sentence together due to the language barrier. This, and Pride's lack of accent, imply that Pride did not learn the language organically; but rather, absorbed that knowledge by eating the locals. Kiba and Akamaru's reaction to Pride's scent and chakra certainly imply that Pride has killed a lot of people. Or at the very least, Pride is working with a full and functional philosopher stone.
  • The Glomp: Happy to see that Ed had survived their encounter with Akatsuki, Naruto manages to take down both Edward and Kiba in an enthusiastic tackle-hug.
  • Good Cop/Bad Cop: During T&I's initial interrogations Ibiki plays Bad Cop and Anko plays Good Cop. Sort of...
  • Handicapped Badass: In addition his abnormal metabolism, Ed spends a good portion of the story one-armed due to the research department confiscating his automail. He not only manages to escape his holding cell and sink multiple buildings in his path (including the interrogation center and the Hokage's tower, but also breaks into said research department and holds his own against a chuunin-class shinobi.
  • Honey Trap: Except not really. Anko is more of a Troll than she is a Femme Fatale Spy but she seems to be thoroughly enjoying herself.
    • Ino (with some "help" from Naruto) also tries to charm Edward for information to pass on to Sasuke. She hasn't improved from when she tried to seduce Neji during the Chunin exams and the whole thing becomes awkward very quickly.
  • The Illegal: Ed's undocumented status is used by the more jingoistic factions in the village as a justification for giving him the T&I treatment.
  • Improvised Weapon: Ed turns a cigarette lighter into an Aerosol Flamethrower/C4 launcher using Mustang's flame alchemy.
  • The Inspector Is Coming: The Daimyo's envoy had been invited to the village to assure the Daimyo that Konoha is secure and can still fulfill Fire nation's military duties after Orochimaru's invasion. During the envoy's stay, Edward breaks out of the interrogation department and sinks the building. Instead of admitting that they have a prisoner with unknown destructive potential on the lose, they say that the T&I department was intentionally moved underground for "security reasons" and quietly issue a notice for "a short, one-armed shoplifter who [is] wanted for questioning." The envoy doesn't entirely buy it.
  • Inspector Javert: Ibiki, because Ed simply refuses to break and humiliates him constantly by breaking out and causing chaos all over Konoha because he refuses to be captured again. Played with by Danzo because him playing this card is so he can have easy access to Ed's secrets (most importantly to him the knowledge of how to use Alchemy) if and when Ed tells them all.
  • It's Personal: Ibiki has had a little bit of a grudge against Edward since the latter broke out of his holding cell and sank the entire interrogation department.
  • I Shall Taunt You: Anko's strategy to bait Kimimaro out of his bone forest so that Might Gai can land a hit. She questions Kimimaro's reasons for following Orochimaru and participating in what is clearly a suicide mission. She viciously mocks him for his continued loyalty to a master who's lost interest in him. Perhaps she is drawing on her own experience as Orochimaru's former student because her words certainly hit close to home. Kimimaro is driven into a suicidal bout of rage and Might Gai delivers the killing blow.
  • Living Lie Detector: The dog at the vet's office. Ed gets away largely thanks to a series of misunderstandings from which everyone assumes (much to Ed's indignation) that Ed is a Crazy Homeless Person who's escaped from a mental hospital.
  • Mundane Utility: Alchemy isn't just for making things go boom. It's also quite handy in repairing thing and Ed puts his talents to good use fixing up stuff that was destroyed during the invasion of Konoha, which quickly endears him to the populace.
  • Never My Fault: Played for maximum horror. It's not ROOT's fault that multiple innocent citizens are being kidnapped, dragged to the group's secret base and executed en masse in front of Ed in a matter not unlike a medieval version of Schindler's List, it's Ed's fault, for being so damn stubborn to tell Danzo how alchemy works... sure, they are citizens of Konoha, what's it to Ed? It still his fault this is happening, why is he letting it happen?
    • Played with in regards to the Sound Four. Once the mission starts falling apart every member given a POV begins rehearsing what they will tell Orochimaru when they report back to the Sound Village. Later on when Tayuya is captured by ROOT she cycles through multiple scapegoats to project her anger onto—Edward, Hinata, her teammates—Before finally admitting to herself that she'd forgotten to take ROOT into consideration. Orochimaru had actually provided them dossier on ROOT but she and her teammates had ignored it. Her rationale being that Danzo's hostility toward's the Uchiha Clan would cause him to turn a blind eye from their abduction of Sasuke. It did not occur to her that capturing an additional target, (Edward Elric), might draw Danzo's attention and interference.
    • To hear Ino tell it, her inability to seduce Neji during the Chunin Exams came of no fault of her own—Clearly, he just isn't interested in women.
  • No-Sell: With the exception of Itachi's Tsukuyomi, Ed is completely immune to genjutsu. And even that can only hold him for a little bit before he figures out how to escape it. The cause of Ed's genjutsu resistance is one of the long-running questions throughout the story.
  • No Social Skills: Gaara is still unsure of how to interact with others post Heel–Face Turn. Now that he isn't just sand-coffin-ing everyone and everything that he dislikes he's having to learn the ins and outs of social niceties.
    • Might Gai got rid of his TV and radio after getting noise complaints. "Strangely" the neighbors still complain. Must be that they have mistaken him with another, less responsible, tenant in their apartment complex!
    • Edward Elric is not only rude but seemingly is also entirely unaware of how he comes off to other people. As far as he is concerned, it's everyone else who has the problem. note 
  • Organ Theft: A female sound ninja tells her comrades not to damage Hinata's eyes, they're worth quite a lot of money. Later a ROOT operative hesitates to kill Hinata when presented with an opportunity to take her byakugan.
    • While not really an original body part, Konoha researchers borrowed Ed's automail arm without permission, and aren't particularly keen on returning it. Not entirely surprising given the prevalence of, and the attitudes toward this trope regarding actual organs in Naruto canon.
    • Truth's general M.O.
  • Playing with Fire/Stuff Blowing Up: Ed carves Mustang's oxidation array into a cigarette lighter, allowing him to flash-fry and temporarily blind unsuspecting adversaries.
  • Please Wake Up: This is inverted by Naruto, whose fear of this trope makes him dislike watching unconscious people. He mentions that he drives his teammates and friends crazy "accidentally" waking them up on overnight missions just to make sure they can wake up.
  • Power Tattoo: Ed has a variety of arrays tattooed onto his body in the case his automail is destroyed or stolen. It is alluded to that these tattoos were originally a part of the human sacrifice ritual on the Promised Day. Edward has since learned to use them in ways unrelated to their original function, though using them like this is implied to carry some inherent risk.
    • Roy Mustang is shown to have the very same tattoos as Edward. Hinata also ends up having tattoos forcibly applied to her by Pride when they are down in the tunnel system together.
  • Prison Escape Artist: Ninja prison cells are designed to detain ninja, not alchemists. Chakra suppression seals that prevent prisoners from preforming ninjusu have no effect on alchemy, as it doesn't require chakra.
  • Produce Pelting: Tayuya’s auditory genjutsu gets her into an angry shouting match and covered in tomato. Yes, really.
    • With the bulk of his chakra drained by Samehada, Naruto finds himself unable to fight against Kisame by traditional means. In a plan formulated in pure 12-year-old logic: Naruto succeeds in dropping a pot of scalding cooking oil over Kisame's head. Followed up by a barrage of various food condiments.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Jiraiya and Tsunade seem willing to exploit Edward for political gain, but they don't really want to hurt Ed. Tsunade would prefer to convince Edward to work with the village willingly, and she and Jiraiya know to keep Ed out of the hands of more paranoid and hawkish villagers.
    • Might Gai takes a personal interest in Edward, without any sort of selfish motive. However, (due in part both to circumstances, clashing personalities, and lack of trust on the part of Edward), they seem to struggle in figuring out how to interact with one another in a productive manner. They also butt heads over Ed's attempts to remove the caged bird seal—Because even though Gai also wants the seal gone, he perceives Edward's (repeatedly failed) attempts to remove it as dangerous and self-harming behavior.
  • Restraining Bolt: A variant of the Caged Bird Seal keeps Ed from leaving Konoha and also hurts him if he tries to tamper with it.
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Edward and Tayuya. Then they meet
  • Slave Brand: Ed certainly interprets the Cage Bird Seal as such. He's right of course, but it's uncouth to be saying so when your only allies are leaning on the Hyūga Clan for their own political survival.
  • Soap Punishment: Happened to Kaemon when he repeated a few of Edward's choice words about the interrogation department to his mother, in spite of (and likely because of) Edward's warning that "her head would explode."
  • The Spook: Edward himself, from Konoha's perspective anyway. No one knows what he is, where he is from, or what he is capable of. It doesn't help that Konoha is feeling very vulnerable and is still unorganized and undermanned after Orochimaru's invasion.
  • Stealth Pun: Ibiki broods over the identity of the mysterious person who tipped Edward off about his automail. As it so happens, a little birdie told him.
  • Survivor Guilt: Apparently the Promised Day didn't go quite as smoothly as it did in canon and Ed is strongly implied to be suffering survivor's guilt as a result. This is probably the cause of Ed's increased Chronic Hero Syndrome tendencies. Several people have remarked on Ed's behavior and speculated that he wants to die.
  • Symbolic Mutilation: True to form, Truth still inflicts its ironic punishments on those who stumble into its domain. Between Hinata's family situation and her inferiority complex, Hinata is often too shy and wracked by social anxiety to make herself heard in the way that she would like. When Pride forces her through the gate Hinata loses her ability to vocalize almost entirely with the removal of her tongue. This implies that what Hinata wanted most in the world was to speak up and to finally be heard by those around her. Of course, Pride finds this whole business very inconvenient. The purpose of waking Hinata from her coma was to question her as to Edward's whereabouts. Pride remarks that he had expected Truth to take Hinata's eyes—in line with the Hyuga clan's pride in their kekkei genkai.
  • Symbol Swearing: Used to avoid bumping the rating up from T to M over language. Ed's got quite the potty mouth, and he ain't alone.
  • Sympathetic Inspector Antagonist: Konoha T&I, and the other Ninja. Some are Just Following Orders, the others believe that whatever they can learn from Ed would be of usefulness in the future (Mr. Elric having pretty much showcased himself to be a pretty powerful Wild Card), and a few are just annoyed that Ed has humiliated them repeatedly with his acts of defiance-slash-mass destruction. Danzo tosses the "sympathetic" part out the window from his first second on screen and never looks back.
  • Technical Pacifist: Ed. Since he is in the Naruto universe, it is quickly noticed and remarked on.
    • Reckless Pacifist: While flipping over a forest Ed accidentally breaks the neck of a Sound ninja who's been harrying him. He kills another Sound shinobi not long after to save Hinata's life.
  • To Be Lawful or Good: Poor Hinata. She chose law over good and spends the next five chapters working up the nerve to apologize.
  • There Is Another: The "Al Doll" would indicate such. However, exactly who sent it is a mystery, and while Ed initially takes this as a sign that his brother is alive and searching for him, his conversation with the shinigami has led him to believe otherwise. The question of whether it is intended as a message or as a trap has yet to be answered.
    • Pride eventually shows up in Konoha, with a body-snatched Roy Mustang in tow.
  • Torture Technician: Ibiki Morino is the head of T&I. Staff members like Anko, Masao, and Goro might also qualify.
    • ROOT agents are no slouches either; too bad for them, Ed is a very tough nut to crack.
    • Tayuya's POV insinuates that she has previously experienced torture comparable to what ROOT is dishing out. Corporal punishment, as well as human experimentation and execution, are apparently commonplace in the Village Hidden in the Sound.
  • Treasure Chest Cavity: Ed uses his automail as a sort of improvised storage space for small equipment, including his lighter and a roll of pre-inscribed transmutation circles.
  • Troll: Ed to Sasuke. All the damn time. This in addition to an earlier embarrassment quickly installs the Fullmetal Alchemist as Sasuke's new Berserk Button.
    • Similarly, Anko absolutely loves trolling Ed himself.
  • Tunnel King: Ed does quite a lot of digging when he's running loose around Konoha.
    • There is an entire network of tunnels beneath Konaha that are used by the ANBU, and especially by ROOT. Pride seems to be using this same tunnel system to move around the village. In chapter 19, Tsunade sends Hiashi Hyūga down into the tunnels to do some recon to determine the accuracy of their current maps of the tunnel system; And rescue his daughter, if they can find her.
  • Underestimating Badassery: Hinata is underestimated by nearly everyone she meets, but especially by herself.
    • Nice building you have there Ibiki, would be a shame if something happened to it...
  • Weak, but Skilled: While Ed's agility and strength are impressive for someone of his stature, his inability to use chakra makes him hard-pressed to keep up with his chakra-enhanced shinobi opponents. On the other hand, his alchemy is more versatile and environmentally adaptable than jutsu which, combined with Ed's resourcefulness, allows him to create improvised weapons and equipment from seemingly harmless everyday items (see [1] above) and control his environment to gain the upper hand (such as creating a vacuum to stop sonic-based weapons or transmuting the air into nitric oxide to anesthetize building occupants).
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: T&I don't particularly want to hurt Ed, but they want his information and techniques, for the good of Konoha, at any cost.
    • Danzo would certainly describe himself as this, but his actions are so brutal that any good intentions he might have are greatly overshadowed.
  • World of Snark: The whole story is chock-full of smart and snappy dialogue, most of which are delivered by Ed.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Danzo has absolutely no problem ordering the execution of a boy who befriended Ed in order to get the secrets of alchemy from him. The threat of this is what finally causes Ed to give in.
    • Ed demonstrates a much lighter version of this, specifically threatening to kick the asses of some kids who were tormenting a bird if they don't cut it out.
  • You Can Talk?: Ed's first encounter with talking Nin-Animals ends with a dramatic freakout, which involves him tripping over a dog and passing out on the floor of a vet clinic. Even afterward Edward doesn't seem entirely sure what to make of the talking animals in the Naruto Universe; Especially when the closest point of reference Edward has for talking animals up to this point are human-based chimera, like Nina. Ed does sorta manage to square the talking animals into his worldview, much the same way he does with ninjutsu and everything else he doesn't understand about the shinobi world at this point—which is to say, he mostly avoids thinking about it too hard.
  • Your Brain Won't Be Much of a Meal Alluded to by Sasuke when Naruto takes a sarcastic remark by Jiraiya literally.
Naruto interrupted shrilly. “I taste bad. That toad can tell them I taste really bad!” “They probably aren’t planning to eat you,” Jiraiya said with a sigh.
He was embellishing, you idiot,” Sasuke said.
What does this have to do with salad?
That’s garnishing! ” Sasuke said, putting his hand against his head as he winced in pain. “they wouldn’t eat you. They’d be too afraid to catch stupid!


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