Author: mirrorskippy (Skippy)
Pairing/Genre: Roy/Ed, Future-fic, 1st of 2 parts.
Warnings/Spoilers: The tiniest dialogue spoiler for Ep. 10
Summary: It's all about the point of view.
It had taken Ed years to notice things. He'd been on one track for so long, and was so naturally driven anyway, that the best he'd ever noticed was the passing scenery. He'd had to learn how to slow down, how to look, look and really see. When did finally notice the things around him, what he saw was enough to jolt him to a halt.
He'd noticed the way people had started looking at him, from amusement and wary suspicion to something more seductive and hopeful. It didn't make him happy, not like seeing those same looks directed at Al, not like seeing his brother blush and his own resultant pride, as though he had something to do with it. Well, he did, but not really. People looked at Al and were attracted, and when they saw more of him they were more impressed. When people saw Ed he knew some felt the same way, but then they saw the metal and some part of them said oh. Some part of them labeled him as damaged.
And there it was, the reason he was in such a mood, and God who was he kidding, thinking he was unselfish enough to be happy because Al was whole again.
He scratched at his nose with his metal arm, feeling almost entirely inhuman. Three-fourths of his original limbs were unusable. Half of them weren't even on his body anymore. What kind of life was that? What kind of person did that make him? He sighed and flopped back against the pillow with almost palpable disdain. This was why he didn't do that introspection shit. This was also why he didn't lay around the damn house with nothing to do or even a damn book to read.
He should have known, should have picked something up, but he was always looking away to something ahead. The way he could ramble on for inexcusable amounts of time should have been a clue. The way he felt - so intense, so passionate. Ed did everything in extremes, and as usual, he'd headed off into the extremely wrong direction. It had taken him this long just to find his way back.
He said what he meant and always meant exactly what he said, and yet, even way back, that hadn't always been true. At least not where Mustang was concerned. 'Just thinking about it makes me nauseous' said while taking a big bite of his food. He'd once called some woman Al had been attracted to a bad gift in good wrapping. What he was considering was like a gift-wrapped explosive.
Ed seriously considered sneaking out of the house, actually sat up and swung his legs off the bed to do it, but the thought of worrying Al kept him in the bed. Al was too busy learning to re-feel things again anyway, he didn't need Ed making it harder.
Al had practically had practically suffered a nervous breakdown, coming out of the country to see Ed in Central. The kid was barely used to all those natural, normal sounds and sensations. And here he was, surrounded by a million more, because Ed couldn't pay close enough attention. Even after all these years of seeing the unnatural, abnormal, and downright evil, he still took certain things for granted. Still paused a moment too long, because he wasn't used some things, like fighting gentle-looking women. It was stupid on his part, and he'd been ripped a new one - several, in fact - but he honestly hadn't been expecting it. He just hadn't noticed any of the signs.
He'd done something for Mustang and been returned the favor, and that should have been it. But that wasn't it, and Ed was getting seriously pissed off trying to figure out why. He supposed it wasn't so much in the actions as in the delivery, and that gave him pause because five years ago he wouldn't have even thought about the how, just the what and the why. But he'd learned how things are done says just as much about motivation as anything, and quite often says the most important things.
It wasn't just that he'd saved Mustang's life, it was that he'd almost died doing it. And it wasn't just the Major General defending him, it was the look on his face when he did it. It was the loss of control. Ed imagined that if he had been there when the Rockbells had died he'd have seen the same look. Panic and absolute conviction this was what he had to do. Fear because he'd screwed up, really and truly made a monumental error and now couldn't fix it. That look, on Mustang's face, had been the last thing he'd seen before he passed out.
Ed wondered, if he went searching for him now, what kind of look he'd see.