The battle is finally over. The enemies have already been defeated and victory is in their hands. Everything looks so disheveled and the soldiers who survived and those who are not are all over the place. Some of the soldiers are gathering the fallen bodies into a corner while uttering a small prayer for those soldiers. Yes, a lot of soldiers sacrificed themselves for this battle.
Sad, but an important person for the Colonel sacrificed herself too. A while ago, that soldier shielded the colonel from a bullet that came from the enemy’s gun. He was shocked and anger ruled his heart for a moment. That fueled his desire to kill the enemy and he came out victorious.
Just right after the battle, Colonel Roy Mustang ran to Lieutenant Riza Hawkeye’s side and he gathered her in his arms. She was breathing as if it’s going to be her last. Roy looked at where the bullet hit her and he felt his heart skipped a beat when he saw where she was hit. Riza’s chest was soaked with blood, in the middle just like where her heart is, is a small hole and from there as if in every beat of her heart, blood comes out soaking her uniform more. He looked at his lieutenant’s face expecting to see her full in pain but he was wrong. Riza is smiling and it seems like she was gazing lovingly at him. He knew from that time that he wanted to cry. She was showing strength even though she’s in the verge of death. No… she won’t die. She won’t! He called Havoc and Falman and he commanded them to get someone who could treat her.
“Riza, hang on there. They already get some help.” Roy said, his voice is kinda shaking from the tension he was feeling.
Riza didn’t say anything. She was still looking at him with that smile of hers.
“Promise me sir, that whatever will happen, you won’t blame yourself.” She said weakly after a long silence.
Roy took it as if it’s a kind of premonition but he doesn’t want to believe it.
“You have to be strong Riza. You can do this, keep on fighting.” Roy said again trying to give her some hope.
“Don’t worry sir, everything will be okay…You will be okay.” Riza said, oblivious to what he was saying. She moved her hand and she reached for his face. Roy took it into his hand and he gently squeezed it. Riza smiled at the gesture but it didn’t last long. Her smile fades slowly and her eyes look a little solemn. Roy noticed the bullet hole in her chest, the blood in there is starting to subside, an indication that her heart’s beating is slowing down. He looks at her almost lifeless eyes. Riza looked back at him and she parted her lips, like she was going to say something but her eyes gradually closed and Roy felt her body gave way.
Everyone who was there and was watching the two didn’t move. They seemed to be frozen in their places. Roy didn’t make any sound. She was gone. There’s nothing he could to about it but hold her lifeless body and wait for the pain to reach his heart. But it seemed that he became numb. He didn’t feel anything except the slight coldness of the lifeless body in his arms. After a few moments, he gently hugs her and the rain started pouring, soaking them all.
The military soldiers and the higher-ups are gathered today for a special ceremony. Today is the day where the fallen soldiers will be awarded for the bravery they showed in fighting for their country and for what is right. Roy knew that it sounds ridiculous. They are awarding people who are now dead and could never celebrate nor hold their awards. If Riza was here, he knew she will also feel the same. Yeah, if only she was here…
The ceremony was finally over. Roy found himself standing before Riza’s grave. He read the inscription on the stone slab and just like the others, her rank went up. She is honored by many for what she did. Just like what the inscription said, she’s a brave soldier who would never think twice just to save someone.
Yeah, Riza promised to watch his back and to protect him. He never doubted her ever since she made that promise but he never knew that she will really sacrifice her life for him one of these days. He knew he has to be grateful…but deep inside he still can’t forget the fact that she’s forever gone and it’s because of protecting him.
As he continued gazing on the tomb, some flashbacks started to play in his mind. Those times when Riza was always with him, always watching his back, always protecting him, always there to provide strength. But now, that pillar of strength of his is gone. She’s not going to be there with him anymore.
Riza’s devotion and loyalty were proven until the very end, when she took the bullet that was really for him, shielding him from death itself.
Roy gritted his teeth as he felt his eyes were becoming hot and watery but after a while, his knees gave way and he slumped on the ground.
“Riza… Why Riza? Why do you have to leave me? Why do you have to close your eyes right away? And tell me Riza, how could I not blame myself for what happened? How could I move on with my life knowing that the reason you’re not here anymore is because of me? How can I say I’ll be okay? Tell me Riza…”
Roy’s voice finally cracked as his eyes continue to shimmer. He closed his eyes for a little while but he could see Riza’s face when she was dying in his arms. As he thinks back about Riza’s bravery, he is reminded of some quotes about the queen in the game of chess. They say that the queen always has the deadliest move…but…she would even sacrifice herself just to let the king live… just like what Riza did. What a coincidence, he calls Riza his ‘queen’ secretly and he used to think of himself as his king… Someday, he told himself, he will make that come true. But sadly…he knew that it will never happen.
Roy felt his heart sank more in the depths of his own misery. He felt so weak. How could he hold on if the person which gives him strength is now gone and will never come back?
“Why does it have to be this way Riza? You were all I have…”
He reached for the stone slab to touch it. Then the rain started pouring just like that day. He was already soaked but he didn’t move in that spot. He continues staring at her tomb until the rain inside him started pouring too. He pours out the pain he’s been hiding together with the tears. Memories clouded his mind and it made him tear up more. Riza didn’t deserve this… and he doesn’t deserve to be saved either. He remembered the time when she was about to say something before her life was taken away. He wonders what it was because he, just like Riza, was about to say something to her too but it was already too late. Now he regret that moment because he didn’t let her know how much he loved her. No, he regrets all the time he never told him when he still has the chance.
Now, she will never know how much he cherished her and that no one will ever take her place in his heart. She will never hear him say the words he wanted to say to her.
Roy looks up as the tears and the raindrops ran on his face. He knows how useless he could get when it’s raining. He could still hear Riza’s words when she said he was useless. Yes. He is useless. More tears came into his eyes as he sit there, thinking of Riza. He is useless that’s why she has to protect him, killing her in the process.
After a while, the rain finally subsided. The sky is still grey but there’s a tinge of white light in some part of the sky. He wonders if Riza could see him now. With that thought, he quickly wiped the tears that are threatening to fall. No, he shouldn’t show how weak he is, if she really is watching him now. Despite himself, he smiled bitterly. He remembered Riza’s last words again. She made him promise not to blame himself and everything will be okay. He was not sure if he really could do that…but for Riza…maybe he could try. He knew she was watching him…and he doesn’t want to make her sad up there…
He finally stood up and saluted before the tomb and he silently walks away. Everything would be different from now on he will start a new beginning without her. It’s going to be hard but he knew he could do this. There are still a lot of things to do.
Years passed by. Roy found himself again in this place. He was wearing his military uniform and some medals are pinned on it.
“It’s been a while Riza. I’m sorry if I haven’t been dropping by for a long time. A lot of things happened, Fullmetal… I mean, Elric is no longer working for the military. He dropped his title a year after the final battle. His brother is already in his human form so he doesn’t need the military anymore. I heard that he is now engaged to his mechanic. Finally, he had the courage to ask her out. “
Roy smiled as he reminisced about the other things that happened. Then…
“Riza… I made it. I am appointed as the Fuhrer now. Finally, they realized the things I can do for this country. I just gave out my acceptance speech. Every one of our comrades is there, the only person who’s missing is you. As I gave my speech, I look at their faces. Falman, Havoc, Breda and Feury are there, looking back at me. I know they are happy for me…but…I want to see your face there too. I want to see your proud smiling face. If only…If only that tragedy didn’t happen, I would have told you what I really feel for you and maybe…maybe…” Roy smiled bitterly as he continued what he’s going to say in his mind. “But all I can do now is dream.”
He knelt down and placed a lone white rose on the tomb and a medal.
“This is for you Riza. I made it this far because of you. I know it’s too late…but I want to say thank you Riza. Thank you so much and…” Roy took a deep breath before saying that next word. He wonders why he was feeling this way, she was no longer here but he’s still feeling tense whenever he was bringing that subject up.
“And…I…I…” Roy sighed. He became frustrated because of this. Stupid him…anyway, no matter what he says, he knew it’s already too late. Roy sighed again. He watched Riza’s tomb until he felt a droplet of rain fell from the sky. He looked up and surely the sky is slowly being engulfed by grey clouds. Why is it that every time he’s visiting her grave, it will rain? He felt something tugged on his pants and as he looked down, he saw Black Hayate. Roy smiled at the dog then he looked back at Riza’s grave again.
“’’till then Riza.” he said. As he turned his back from the tomb, a cold breeze went passed them, leaving a scent of gunpowder in the place, then he felt someone hugged him from the back and a familiar voice said “I love you too, Roy. ‘till then.”
Roy who was surprised quickly turned towards the tomb. He didn’t see anyone there, the rose and the medal is still where he left it but surely, he could see Riza in his mind, smiling proudly at him. Roy smiled too, despite the tears that are running freely on his cheeks. He suddenly felt warm inside, like his entire burden and regrets vanished. He felt loved…and it’s been a while since he felt that feeling. He finally knew that Riza was so proud of him.
He wiped his tears and uttered a small thank you before making a quick salute and he started walking away, followed by Black Hayate.
He knew that Riza will always watch him from up there and someday, surely, they will meet again. He will put his faith in that and when that day comes he will surely tell her how much he loved her with all his being.
“’till then, Riza.”
A/N: There. So, how was it? Thank you for reading everyone! To Royai fans (just like me)... PLEASE DON'T HATE ME! T_T I came up with this idea when I read some topic in our Royai discussion board, some of the forumers there were talking about what could happen to Roy and Riza in the end of the manga and they say that something like this could happen and I was inspired by a forwarded text message quotes about the queen in the game of chess.