*snorts* This whole story would be pointless if Edward didn't get home some way
, dead or alive or with an amnesia or turned into a Homunculus or something. (Yes, I'm listing all the possibilities so you won't know what I'm writing
I know, tho.) And they get some light into his disappearance, don't worry^^A/N:
Like you can see, I'll update now before my two week absence. I'm sad though, because I don't get too many reviews
This makes me one sad author. I hope you make me happy and review, this being my first real
fic in English and all... (Yes, you got it. I wrote all of those one-shots after starting this one. Except Father, but the original version sucks so no one really cares.)
And I was right. This is
over 5 000 words! MUAHHAHHAAA! (And if my memory is in order, chapter 6 was... over 7 000. 5th one only slightly over 4 000 (Damn.))4. Painful Memories
"This is the best I could manage with your notes, Mr. Elric, and it's definitely a masterpiece" Manuel informed him while bustling around the living room in excitement at the next day.
He was holding the leg in his hands as Edward was sitting in one of the not-too-comfy armchairs, trying to keep himself from rolling his eyes. 'Sheesh, he is worse than Winry... And
that is saying something.'
Timothy wasn't present because he had some business to take care of. Manuel mentioned something about the Maurers' neightbour was going to give birth to her fifth child (Edward vacuely wondered how on earth someone would go through labour pains five
times if the woman had something to say to the matter. He could still remember very vividly Gracia's actions when she gave birth to Elicia...) Not that Ed had anything against it but Manuel was causing him very uncomfortable migraine. And his head had been throbbing for some time already. Edward still
hadn't figured out the reason to his sudden and now common headaches.
"Mr. Maurer, shouldn't we attach that leg?" Hohenheim interrupted suddenly.
Edward blinked and glanced his father in wonder. Why he was so eager to get it done, even if he hadn't supported this since the beginning. His father was one odd cookie in the jar.
"Ah, of course, Mr. Elric" Manuel said and stumbled hastily to Ed's side.
Ed rolled his eyes as he forced his muscles to relax. He knew from experience that attaching automail limb hurt much more if he was stiff. He had been stiff the first time his automail was attached and boy did it hurt
... He shut his eyes as he felt Manuel to bustle around his thigh. Ed took deep breaths to calm his nerves.
Mr. Maurer shifted his eyes towards him once more before turning the switch that connected his nerves to the prosthetic.
The pain shot through his body from the stump to the tips of his fingers. He glenced his teeth to keep himself from screaming, his only hand balled into a tight fist. 'Oh, f*!@...'
He felt his fingernails to dug into his palm. He was afraid that they would draw blood.
The next thing he noticed was that he was laying on the couch, panting painfully. He opened his eyes slowly only to see Hohenheim's worried face to loom above him. The pain was dulling into a faint throbbing.
"Are you okay?" he asked softly.
Edward shut his eyes and inhaled deeply. The pain shot through his body in another spasm. His eyes snapped open and his left hand rose to his mouth as a coughing fit consumed him. Ed felt something wet on his hand, he knew already what it was. 'Blood...'
He barely noticed that Hohenheim was helping him to sit up.
As the fit ended he kept his eyes closed, breathing as deeply as he dared.
"Here" his father said quietly. "Drink this."
Edward felt that a glass was lifted to his lips. He drank thirstily and the faint taste of water filled his mouth and flowed down his sore throat. When the glass was empty, Ed opened his eyes again and looked straight into his father's worried golden eyes.
"I'm fine" he said weakly, wiping his mouth to his sleeve.
Hohenheim just shook his head. Edward could be bleeding from the head and various other body parts and he would have a concussion and still would insist that he was fine. Hohenheim couldn't help but wonder sometimes if his son had a death wish. Or maybe he was just stubborn.
"So, ummm... Can you walk?" Manuel asked douptfully from the doorway. Apparently Edward's coughing fit hadn't scared him but it had made him unsure about the whole ordeal. Not that either of the Elrics blamed him. They were quite unnerving pair. An old professor man and his crippled teenager son... 'We should get the ”Weirdest Family of the Year” award'
, Edward thought, amused.
Ed smiled at him as reassuringly as he could at the moment and turned sideways on the couch. His head felt dizzy but he still planted his prosthetic leg carefully on the floor, followed quickly by his flesh leg. The floorboards felt smooth and slightly cold under his toes. He gripped couch's armrest tightly as he rose to his feet slowly. He wobbled slightly and almost fell over before Hohenheim caught him. He breathed slowly as he felt his legs get steadier. He straightened himself and let go of his father's hand. He felt a small amount of happiness rush through him. 'I can stand on my own again!'
Edward's first step in four months was careful and slow. He stumbled and Hohenheim caught him. Ed shut his eyes, inhaling deeply before opening his eys again and starting to walk. His father never left his side, hovering there when he managed to take one or two steps, steadying him as he swayed and taking a hold of him when he fell over. The distance from couch to the nearest bookself was barely three meters and it took almost fifteen minutes from him to reach it. He leaned against it heavily as he stumbled unsteadily to it. He didn't care if his steps were shaky and that he would need help at walking for a next few days. He didn't care that he wasn't in Amestris anymore. He didn't care that his mother had died and that his father had left... He was purely happy for the first time in ages and he felt like a heavy weight had been lifted from his shoulders. As he turned around his smile was so wide that looked like his face was going to split in two.
"I... I can move forward again" the boy said beaming to the two older men. "Thank you."
During the next two months Edward managed to relearn to walk properly for the third time in his short life. Of course this time wasn't as hard as it had been during his first rehabilitation process. He hadn't gone outside their house during that time because he didn't really want to get himself in trouble while having only one arm. Sure, he could defend himself without a problem and hold up in a fight. That is, if he had both of his arms and he was otherwise fine. But now he would be hopelessly outnumbered and his body wasn't in the best possible condition. And his lack of limbs wasn't the only reason.
Now as he could walk again, he noticed that if he got too tired or if he strained himself too much, the pain would flare through his body and if he didn't sit down he would start coughing. And that resulted that he would lose some blood. It wasn't pleasant at all and after couple of times trying to continue as if nothing had happened, he accepted his fate and sat down quickly.
When Hohenheim was at home, he'd rush to Edward's side and demanding to know if he was okay. That was very good reason to Ed not to tell about his dizziness moments during the hours Hohenheim wasn't present. He had decided to keep his mouth shut after first incident of that kind. He didn't want his father to fuss over him for such a reason.
The other thing that made him itchy was that Manuel Maurer hadn't completed his arm even after two months. A life without his other arem was becoming more irritating by a moment and he didn't do anything to hide the fact either. He'd complain and sulk but he still didn't have his right arm. Hohenheim would get tired with him always quite soon and make his leave, usually to do something university related stuff. Like grading papers.
One of the good things for not having his metal arm, was that it didn't weigh him down. Sure, his balance was off and he needed help while dressing, but it didn't stunt his growth. Yes, he was getting taller. He was up to Hohenheim's shoulder already, which meant that he had gained couple of inches. He was proud of this fact, even though he hadn't bragged about it after he first noticed. He smirked. People wouldn't be able to call him shrimp or pipsqueak anymore. If everything went well, he would be able to reach his father's heigh. All the crap with genes and so. The bastard actually was able to be useful.
"We are going to go to... a dinner?" Edward said in a disbelieving tone at December 6th when his father had come home looking entirely too smug for it to be legal.
"Yes, to dinner" Hohenheim answered as he searched his son's wardrope for clean shirt. How Edward managed to live in this chaos his room was in was beyond Hohenheim's understanding.
"And has it occurred to you that I'm not the most... suitable for some dinner?" Ed asked as calmly as he could. "I'm missing an arm here, Old Man."
Hohenheim glanced up at the name. Edward had started calling him 'father' after three months, though the boy still called him 'Old Man' when he was either bored, irritated or angry. Though he would use father at those times too, if he wanted to be sarcastic. Like ”Dear father of mine” or some other remark.
"I'm perferctly aware of that fact, Edward" he said calmly, returning to his quest for suitable clothes.
He heard Edward snort from his spot on the bed, surrounded by mountains of papers. His son spent most of the hours he was awake researching and squinting down to the papers filled by boy's small and neat handwriting. He would destroy his eyesight permanently if he continued this way.
Hohenheim shook his head disapprovingly. "Quit squinting, just admit that you've inherited my eyeproblems along with my looks."
Edward glanced murderously at him. "I. Don't. Need. Some. Frickking. GLASSES!"
"Of course Edward."
He huffed angrily and returned to his reading, refusing to admit that he couldn't see his texts clearly. He was stubborn (or just plain stupid) and he knew it. But he looked enough like his father without adding glasses to the mix.
"But we're still going to go to that dinner" Hohenheim said calmly, fishing out dark dress pants, a white button up shirt, a dark brown vest and a black tie from the wardrope for Edward to wear.
"FINE! Then we go!" Ed said angrily.
Hohenheim let a small victorius smirk grace his lips before he turned towards his disgruntled looking son and handed him his clothes.
"Put those on. Let's make you as suitable as possible."
Around 5 p.m. the two Elric's emerged from their current home both dressed into long trench coats and wearing their hair in a high pony-tail, the younger (and albeitly shorter) one of the two looking rather annoyed to the situation at hand. His right sleeve hung empty by his side as he walked quietly beside his father. The winter wind was cold and Edward shivered in his coat and pulled it tighter around himself, trying to prevent wind from blowing through his clothes.
"Care to tell me where exactly we're going?" Edward asked.
"To the Trumbauers. They live next to us and Gratia is an excellent cook" Hohenheim said, motioning towards the two story house next to theirs.
Ed glanced it thoughtfully. "And how do you know she is?" he asked.
His father smiled down at him. "They asked me over to eat from time to time and I became good friends with them. Simon is an intelligent person to talk to and they've two nice daughters."
"Okay..." Edward didn't sound too convinced.
As they walked to the front stairs, Hohenheim turned to look at Edward. He blinked up to his father. His expression was serious.
"Edward, I may not know everything about your life or anything."
Edward snorted, that was the understatement of the century. But he nodded anyway, encouraging his father to continue.
"You know about the alternate-people theory that I explained to you when you first entered this world and we've seen some of them already. I don't know anything about people you've met during your travels, but if you come across an alternate, don't show it. They'll just be scared."
Ed bit his lip. Was Hohenheim making him even more nervous on purpose? It sure as hell felt like it. "So... you think these Trumbauers might be alternates?"
"Of course they are. I don't myself know who their versions on our side are but they definetely have them" Hohenheim's face was stern and somewhat worried.
Edward shut his eyes and took a deep breath. He didn't know if he was ready to face more familiar faces so soon after the Maurer brothers but looked like he didn't really have a choice. But if he got lucky, he might not have known these Trumbauers's alternates back at Amestris. If he got lucky that is. He had never been the Golden Boy when it came to things like this. But crying over spilled milk didn't help. (And why milk? Why not... apple juice or something less disgusting?)"I'm ready."
Hohenheim nodded to him and rang the doorbell. All the while Edward stood there nervous, waiting for someone to open the door. Soon he heard two pairs of pounding footsteps and two voices giggling. Girl voices and judging by how high pitched they were, the before mentioned girls couldn't be older than eight at the most.
The door swung open, revealing two girls standing in the doorway, out of breath, their chests rising and falling. He had an sudden urge to drop his jaw on the stairs as he looked those two. They both appeared to be around six-years-old. The slightly taller wore her long light brown hair in two braids. The other's hair was about same shade of brown, hers in two high pigtails. Their big green eyes peered up at him as the taller turned to shout inside the house.
"Vati! Onkel Hohenheim ist hier! Und jemand ist mit ihm!" ( Dad! Uncle Hohenheim is here! And someone is with him! )
Ed shivered. The girls looked identical to Nina Tucker and Elicia Hughes. Was this even normal? 'Thank heavens that I was warned before hand.'
But he still couldn't help the familiar tinge of guilt rising in his chest as his golden eyed gaze rested on the older girl.
"Rufen Sie sie, Nina herbei! Seien Sie den Gästen nicht grob!" ( Call them in, Nina! Don't be rude to the guests! )
Edward's hand balled into a fist in his pocket. He knew that voice too. Why him
, of all people he could have met? He didn't know if he would be able to keep himself from pounding that man's face in if he bore that face. He had almost done it a few times before and they were not in his 'Most Pleasant Memories'-list. The memories of Shou Tucker never were.
"Are you okay, Edward?" he heard a voice ask.
He looked up from his shining shoes and smiled weakly to his father.
"Yeah. I'm fine."
Hohenheim frowned. He knew his son was lying but he couldn't really do anything to it. Edward would tell him what was bothering him when he was ready. If he told him, that is.
"Eingegangen" ( Come in. )
Nina said then and stepped out of their way. Elicia's alter was hiding behind her and she peeked at Edward shyly.
Ed smiled the best he could to the two girls. The whole situation was a bit unnerving but it really couldn't be helped. This Nina wasn't his Nina. This was someone else entirely. This Nina hadn't been turned into a chimera by her nutcase of a father. This Elicia wasn't his Elicia. This Elicia wouldn't call him 'big brother' whenever he stopped by. Nor would this Nina. It hurt more than he dared to admit.
"Hallo ist mein Name Edward. Was ist Ihrig?" ( Hello, my name is Edward. What's yours? )
Both girls turned suddenly scarlet, Nina stared the floor and stuffed it with her toe and Elicia's alter hid herself so well he had to wonder had she even been there.
"I-I'm Nina" the girl whose name he had already guessed answered stammering. "Th-this is my little sister Aloisia" she motioned behind her back to her pigtailed companion.
Edward smiled to them slightly. "No need to be scared, I'm not going to eat you." Not many knew it, but he actually liked kids when they weren't trying to get him play dress up and other embarrassing games and those he would avoid like a plague. Who wouldn't?
His father took his coat from his shoulders and put it on the rack to keep company to his own coat. Ed noticed that Aloisia's gaze lingered on his right shirt sleeve though she turned her gaze quickly away when she noticed his eyes on her. She probably had been taught not to stare. 'Or not to get caught staring'
, he added mentally before smirking.
Nina apparently ignored his condition. "Come on, Uncle, Mister, Dad wants to talk to you."
Hohenheim smiled down to the girls. "Thank you Nina, Aloisia, you're good girls, helping your parents out."
Nina beamed up at him and Aloisia peeked from behind her sister and smiled hesitantly.
"Follow me" Nina said with a military woman like air around her, motioning them to follow her.
Edward strode down the hall, following Trumbauer sisters and his father who was talking with Nina about her newest drawings. Ed glanced around the hall, noticing the simple carpet, the walls that were lighter shade than the walls at their house. And there were photographs on the walls. He stopped to stand in front of one of them. He recognized both Nina and Aloisia. Along with them in the picture were a man and a woman, both easily recognized by his golden gaze. The girls's father was indeed an alter of Shou Tucker. He had glasses and the same hair style and from his smile he suspected that he wasn't same kind of madman as on the other side. The woman beside him had short hair and kind eyes. Ed had seen that pose before and what kind of woman carried it. Gracia Hughes' alter. He sighed softly. Then he felt something tuck his empty sleeve - or someone.
He looked down and became aware that he was looking straight into Aloisia Trumbauer's green eyes. He blinked. Last time he checked she was supposed to be shy and hide behind her older sister. Well, he had never really managed to figure out any member of the opposite sex so this shouldn't be so surprising.
"You should come, Mister" she said. "Dad said he wanted to talk to both
Ed smiled faintly. "No worries, I just stopped to look at the pictures."
He turned back to the family portrait. "Are they your mother and father?"
Aloisia looked as he motioned the alters of Tucker and Gracia.
"Uh huh. Those are Mom and Dad. And there are Sister and me too."
He smirked as he glanced down to the girl. "I can see that."
Aloisia smiled to him and then grabbed his empty shirt sleeve, pulling him after her. "Come on, Mister!"
Ed shook his head still smiling.
As they reached a open door on the left side of the hallway, she guided him in. Nina and his father were already there but there was also a man he had seen in that photograph, the alter of Shou Tucker. When the man heard his mismatched steps, he turned around with a smile on his face, eyes twinkling like he knew a joke no one else did.
"Ah, I assume that you're Edward? Your father has told me so much about you!"
Ed blinked. He hadn't even considered this kind of behaviour from a man who bore Shou Tucker's face. This place was getting even weirder by a second. "Um..."
"Of course he has mentioned your current condition, I do hope that your arm prosthetic will be ready soon" alter Tucker sounded honest and Ed thought that he'd probably like the man if he wasn't like his alter and would take a break from talking. The familiar throbbing of migraine made itself known in the back of his head.
"Uh... Thanks... I guess..."
"Ah! How rude from me! Sit down, sit down Edward" the man tackled him on to the couch.
After that the man sat down himself onto one of the more-comfy-looking-armchairs-than-the-ones-at-home. "I think I forgot to introduce myself. My name is Simon Trumbauer and I've been friends with your father for some years now."
Ed nodded, not seeing anything suspicious or wrong information in that. Hohenheim had lived in Munich for three years as he had heard during one of their long talks that his father called 'father and son bonding moments'. Honestly, Hohenheim was even harder to figure out than any female he had come across. It probably had something to do with Hohenheim being techinically very well survived fossil.
"My name is Edward Elric but that old man there" his left wrist flicked towards his father in another armchair. "apparently told it to you already, Mr. Trumbauer."
Mr. Trumbauer chuckled. "Yes, indeed."
"You're Uncle's son?"
Edward blinked and glanced down to Aloisia, who was still standing by him. She looked surprised as did her older sister beside Hohenheim.
"Yes, I am" he answered.
"Why didn't you say anything?" Nina asked as she jumped up from her seat and ran to him.
"Umm..." Ed really didn't have a clue what to say next. These two were very weird even by his standards.
Luckily Mr. Trumbauer decided to save him from his two daughters, who were bombarding him with questions that didn't have anything to do with each other. (”Why are your eyes yellow?” ”Do you like me?” ”Ain't I pretty?”) ”Nina, Aloisia, why don't you go to help your mother in the kitchen?"
Both girls turned to look at their father simultaneously with pleading looks in their eyes. Mr. Trumbauer just shook his head to their faces and the girls looked back up at Edward.
"We'll talk later, Mister" Nina said in threatening voice.
The sisters walked then out of the living room, leaving there one very bewildered Edward Elric with two amused adults who apparently thought that a teenager who was threatened by two six-year-old girls was extremely funny.
Edward didn't agree with them, though.
About half an hour later, Aloisia walked down the hallway from kitchen to the living room. Her Mother had send her to call her Dad and Uncle and the new Mister to the dining room to eat. Mom had put Sister to set the table, wich she had agreed to do, even though Sister wanted to see the Mister too. Aloisia understood her Sister's thoughts somewhat.
Neither of them had never seen someone like Mister before. No man, young or old, they had seen had had only one arm. Then he had a pretty long blond hair too and eyes the same colour. Mister looked like Uncle but that was understandable because they were closely related. But Mister was prettier. He was young and he was kind as far as she could tell.
She peered around the doorway of the living room. Dad, Uncle and Mister were all sitting on chairs, Dad and Uncle in heated discussion about something called 'äthe Treaty of Versailles'. Mister didn't look interested in whatever they were saying. He was trailing his only hand's fingers over the sofa cushion beside him.
"Dad" her father looked up at her, as did the others in the room. "Dinner is ready, Mom says you should come to eat."
"Ah, thank you, Aloisia, darling" he smiled to her as he rose from his seat.
Mister and Uncle rose too, Mister a little bit unsteady. Uncle helped him to regain his balance and Mister said something to him, though Aloisia couldn't hear what, then he hurried to walk by her father, leaving Mister to walk on his own. She glanced at Uncle in wonder. Why would he leave Mister on his own? Didn't he see that Mister couldn't walk that well?
Because Hohenheim apparently couldn't read her mind and return to his son's aide, she decided to be a good host and waited for Mister to catch up. Mister's gaze sifted as he noticed her presence beside him and she could see him smiling faintly.
"You okay, Mister?" Aloisia asked.
"I'm fine, don't worry about me, Aloisia" was Mister's answer.
She just nodded and was quiet for a minute before asking: "How old are you, Mister?"
He looked surprised by the question and it took him a moment to comprehend an answer. "I'm sixteen, going to be seventeen in January."
"Wow, that's old”, she said, eyes wide like saucers. ”I'm only five and Sister is seven" Aloisia informed.
Mister smiled. "Really? You're both big girls."
She beamed up to him. "Thank you, Mister!" she said happily. She knew it! He was nice!
The group reached the dinning room, Mr. Trumbauer and Hohenheim entering first with Edward and Aloisia on their heels. The scent of many delicious foods was flooding around as Ed set his foot on the floor for the first time. He came to a conclusion that Mrs. Trumbauer's cookings smelled as good as anything by his own Mother. Nina was standing there beside a woman from the photo in the entrance hall. Her short hair was light brown, lighter than her daughters'. Her eyes were the same shade of green than the girls. She smiled to him as he entered.
"You must be Edward. It's nice to meet you at last" her voice was even the same as Gracia's. "I'm Gratia Trumbauer."
He smiled politely back. "It's nice to meet you too, Mrs. Trumbauer."
Gratia smiled gently at him, apparently pleased by his response. "My, you look like well-mannered young man. Ladies must be all over you."
Ed's face flushed as red as a tomato. Heck, he hadn't even had a time to think about girls! And she sounded like she implied him to be some kind of womanizer! But he wasn't one! Mustang was and he was back at Amestris wooing over anything with chest that moved. He had once touched woman's breast and that was an accident!
Three adults chuckled and Mr. Trumbauer was laughing outright. Aloisia and Nina didn't apparently understand what was happening, they glanced at each other confused.
"You don't need to feel embarrassed, Edward" Hohenheim said smiling. "I've had many women running after me over the years and you'll get used to the idea."
"'Many women'?!" Ed squeaked. "Where the hell you got that one?!"
"He is your father" said Gratia. "And your resemblance to each other is uncanny and if he has been ladies man before, it's possible that you'll be too" her expression turned more serious. "I hope you'd watch your tongue. I don't want my daughters to start swearing."
"Umm... Of course, Mrs. Trumbauer" he said, uncertain.
"Let's eat!" Mr. Trumbauer announced.
During that dinner Edward learned that Mrs. Trumbauer was an extremely nice person like her counterpart Gracia Hughes back at home. She knew what to say and when to say it, but she'd also chat if it seemed approriate. She would scold her daughters if they didn't act like "fair ladies with somewhat healthy background in a dinner with old friends". Ed's opinion was that Nina and Aloisia acted like two kids would at that age. He had been surprised to learn that there were many ways for a girl act at dinner.
Gratia had actually noticed this and said that if he wanted etiquette lessons he should just say so. This had left Edward with very peculiar expression on his face and Hohenheim had come to his rescue telling that he was working on it. 'Like hell you're, Old Man.'
But he kept his mouth shut because he wasn't going to get any etiquette lessons until someone got an axe, a cleaver and milk to force him take them. Though he still wouldn't go there. He was just stubborn like that.
They didn't only sit on the table talking though. No, they actually ate. And extremely good food for that matter. Gratia was an excellent cook and he promptly said so. This of course sparked yet another discussion about Ed's possible future among ladies.
"Do you have girlfriend, Edward?" Gratia asked without warning in the middle of dessert (strawberries and cream).
Edward dropped his dessert spoon and felt as blush made its way up his neck to his cheeks. "Uh..."
He felt all of their eyes on him. His father and Mr. Trumbauer's mindless chit-chat about taxes ceased as they went all ears. Aloisia's spoon had stopped in the middle air and her mouth was open, ready to welcome spoonful of strawberries. Nina's spoon was going back to the bowl and her big green eyes stared him. Edward shifted, uncomfortable under Gratia's intense gaze.
"Well... uh... No, I don't have" he replied and hoped that he could transmute hole in the floor and disappear.
"Really?" Hohenheim didn't sound too convinced. "What about Winry?"
Ed flinched. He told them the truth, he hadn't dated ever in his short life. Why Hohenheim had to bring Winry up? Living in this side was hard enough without someone reminding him constantly about people he had left behind, thank you very much.
"Winry?" Mr. Trumbauer asked. "Who is she?"
Before his father had a chance to answer, Ed stood up.
"Excuse me. Would someone tell where is the bathroom?" his voice trembled but was overall calm. Only someone who knew him well would catch the trembling.
"Down the hall, second door left" Gratia said frowning.
"Thank you" he said quietly and hurried out of the door.
After Ed managed to shut the bathroom door, he leaned against it, shutting his eyes tightly. His breath was ragged and he knew that if he had ran, he'd be right about now coughing his lungs out. He slid heavily down the door brought his knees to his chest. It hurt. He shivered but didn't straighten his legs.
'Why did he bring it up?'
he asked from himself, eyes still closed. 'Doesn't he understand that it hurts to talk about them?'
'Of course he understands.'
A small voice in his head answered. 'And probably better than anyone. He had to leave you behind to keep you safe.''But we weren't safe.'
He argued. 'Mom died and we wanted her back and got ourselves into this mess.'
The voice didn't answer.
The Trumbauer family didn't bring Winry up again after he emerged from the bathroom, once again calm and collected. Bet Mustang'd be proud. The dinner ended in silence for Edward's part. He wasn't particularly fond of talking right now and others understood it and didn't try to have any discussions with him.
When Edward and Hohenheim were leaving, the whole Trumbauer family was standing in the tiny entrance hall, saying that they'd come again any time they wanted. His father helped him into his coat without a word. Hohenheim opened the door and stepped out and Edward went to follow him when he felt a slight tug on his empty sleeve. His gaze turned down to Nina and Aloisia who were standing there, watching him silently.
"Don't be angry, Mister" Aloisia said with a pleading look in her eyes.
"Uh huh" Nina nodded. "Mom and Dad didn't mean it."
His gaze shifted between the two for a minute before his lips curled into a smile. A real one. He crounched down to one knee and took both girls into a one armed hug in a spur of a moment. He felt them both stiffen and let go of them.
"I'm not angry" he said, still smiling to the girls. "Just a little sad because I remembered some things. I'm not angry with them or you."
Nina and Aloisia looked uncertain of this new turn of events. He noticed Gratia and Simon's relieved expression from the corner of his eye. He rose back to his feet and glanced at the Trumbauer sisters.
He chuckled. "Go to play, you two."
Their eyes lit up as they started to smile.
"Okay!" Aloisia said happily and gave a quick hug to Edward's knees before darting up the corridor with her sister.
Edward shook his head, still smiling.
That evening Edward and Hohenheim were both sitting on the kitchen table in their house. Edward was drinking water and staring of to the space while his father read a newspaper and drank tea from a simple white mug. Their kitchen was just as dull as the rest of the house, completed with grey walls and dark cupboards.
"Edward, I'm sorry."
He blinked and turned his attention to Hohenheim who had folded today's piece of .... and was now looking into his son's eyes with a dark look in his own.
"About earlier. When I brought Winry up."
Ed's gaze turned towards the door. "Don't think about it. It was nothing."
Hohenheim shook his head. "It wasn't 'nothing', Edward. I started talking about her in order to tease you and caused you pain."
Edward had a slight smile on his lips as his eyes rose to meet his father's. "I said already. Don't worry about it."
"I didn't really think that you'd have feelings towards her..." Hohenheim continued as if he hadn't heard his son.
Ed's eyes widened. "What?!"
Hohenheim blinked and turned to look at him. "You don't?"
Edward's cheeks burned. "Of course I have! She is like a sister to me!"
He abandoned his half full glass of water and retreated from the kitchen, face flaming red.
Hohenheim smiled to the empty room and said defiantly and in a calm voice. "He is in denial."
Then he emptied his tea cup, brought it and his son's glass to the sink and went upstairs to sleep.A/N:
Chapters are getting longer, you should be happy. And you got some implied EdWin
I just love it
And you would make me happy by clicking that "Reply" button and writing how much you hate/love/worship/despise/stand this story.