This a birthday fic I did for my friend of mine, known as hikaru_9 on livejournal. :3 Because I wanted to get it out on time, there may be a mistake or two. ^^;;;
Ed had never liked his father. That didn’t mean however that he didn’t long for one.
While he suppressed such feelings and kept them deep down, Al and Winry knew what Ed secretly longed for. That didn’t mean he wished to start relationships with Hohenheim, as far as Ed was concerned that man wasn’t a real father. What Ed wanted was a real one, one that’d take care of him and pay attention to him, one that would be proud of him, one who would BE THERE.
That was probably why he liked Hughes so much.
Many nights after a visit with the family man, Ed would sit up in bed thinking. If only Hohenheim had been like that. Mom would never have died and this whole mess wouldn’t have started.
Ed superimposed everything he had ever wanted in a father onto Hughes. He knew he wasn’t he only one too. Al was doing the same thing, as was Winry, who was reminded of the parents she had lost by the Hughes family. Except for Ed it was different. Winry’s father was a fantastic man. Al could barely remember Hohenheim and hardly knew what he was like as a father. Ed knew. And because Ed knew what it was like to have a parent who wasn’t quite parent material, he treasured Hughes even more than the other two.
Although he’d never come out and admit it. He was too proud. When Hughes wasn’t around Ed would talk about how the man annoyed him and Al would bug him about it (“Oh, you like him brother.”) Often Al would have to say the things Ed wouldn’t.
That night was a prime example. The brothers had gone to visit the Hughes family while on a trip to Central. It was getting late, Gracia was putting a still very young Elicia to sleep and Ed was starting to nod off himself. Maes had sat down next to him after going to the kitchen to get something, and eventually Ed fell asleep, his head resting on Maes’ shoulder.
“Oh?’ Hughes began looking over after feeling the other’s head. “Heh, well look at him. He must be pretty tired.”
“Yeah.” Al began from across from him. “Our trains left pretty early, so he’s been up since dawn.”
Al looked down and thought for a moment. Now would probably be a good time to let Hughes know how Ed felt about him. Al knew that every new mission for the Philosopher’s Stone might be their last, so it was probably best someone important to them like Hughes know how they felt now.
“You know…He thinks really highly of you, sir.” he began.
Hughes looked away from Ed and back at Al wondering where a comment like that came from.
“Yeah. I do too. You see…our father left us when we were small…”
Hughes got what Al was saying right away. He looked back down to Ed again, this time with sympathy.
“I don’t see why he would do that willingly…”
“I mean sure, Edward can be a bit of a brat, but the two of you are good boys, and I don’t see any reason he would willingly leave a beautiful wife and two great boys like you. It was probably something he couldn’t help. Sometimes…that happens.” He explained, that comforting smile on his face.
Al looked down. “Yeah. That’s what I think happened. Mom loved him so much; he couldn’t really be that bad if she did…”
“Unless he’s a total ....…” Hughes added looking up at the ceiling, his glasses turning opaque.
“That’s what Ed’s theory is…” Al moaned.
“Although, Mr. Hughes…”
“I truly believe Brother wishes you were our father.”
“I mean, he never comes out and says it, but that’s because he’s stubborn. I know he does though.”
Maes looked back down on the sleeping boy who was starting to drool and smiled. Carefully as to not wake him he slid his arm behind Ed’s back, grasped his shoulder with his hand and pulled him closer in a sign of affection.
“Don’t worry. The two of you are like sons to Gracia and I. You’re already family to us. So it’s like…I’m already like your father.” he said, although it wasn’t clear if he was addressing Al or the snoozing Ed.
Nevertheless, hearing that made Al very happy and somewhere in his subconscious, it made Ed happy too.