Fandom: Fullmetal Alchemist
Characters/Pairings: Roy, Edward, Alphonse, Riza, (Ed/Winry)
Rating: Teen for subject matter
Summary: What’s the worst that could’ve happened?
Warnings: Mentions of miscarriage. Angst.
Disclaimer: Arakawa owns all; I just play in her world.
Prompt: From rei382, Fullmetal Alchemist, Ed (+ or /Winry or Roy or Al), Not all experiences are good, but it's the worse ones that you learn most from.
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The Scarlet Cock wasn't too crowded, but it was noisy enough that the trio in the corner near the fireplace would be hard put to be overheard. The two blond men were younger than the one with raven hair, who might be recognized as the Fuhrer Elect of Amestris anywhere else but the Cock. Here, he was Roy, or, if the serving girls or the Madame who ran the Cock were generous, 'Roy-Boy' or 'Darling'. They were keeping a little distance tonight at Roy's request; enough that he had the Elric brothers here, he didn't particularly want to listen to Edward mouth off about how many women he had in his stable.
"So." He eyed the pair, thinking that whatever they'd been doing with their lives, it obviously suited them, "Now that you're both adults, you can actually be treated like adults."
"We've been adults forever," Edward snorted.
Alphonse smiled, just a touch wearily. "Brother."
"In status, but not in stature - and that's not a quip about your height, Fullmetal, before you go off half-cocked." Edward subsided in his chair, but he still showed a bit of fang. "You're now actually men. With other parties in your lives." He glanced at the ring gracing Edward's finger and noticed Alphonse was the one who blushed. "Since I had to put up with all of your terrible shenanigans when you were younger, I want to hear the worst that your partners have had to put up with."
"Why should we tell you?" Edward sneered.
"Because I'll be your Fuhrer in a few weeks, and I'll need something to laugh at when I'm schmoozing rich old women."
"I'll go first," Alphonse said hastily. "Um. Back in Xing."
"Yes?" Roy picked up his glass of whiskey, tasting it and waiting for Alphonse to go on. His blush heightened his coloring.
"I...uh...had to break it to Mei that I really didn't like her except as a friend."
Edward spun in his chair to face his brother, a goggle-eyed expression on his face. "You what?"
"Do go on, Alphonse. I take it she was rather...put out?"
"I didn't think I'd escape with my life, sir." Alphonse grabbed his own glass and swallowed the whiskey in one gulp.
"And just who were you interested in?" Edward asked, leaning closer to Alphonse.
He colored even more, so rosy, he could mirror a tomato. "Ling."
Roy had to pound Edward's back, wondering if the young man was going to choke. "Ling?" he repeated breathlessly. "The stupid prince? That Ling? With Lan Fan the dangerous - dangerous - cut your balls off dangerous?"
"She likes me," Alphonse said, a bit stiffly. "And she, uh...still doesn't like Mei much." That admission made him squirm.
"That's a very interesting predicament, Alphonse," Roy said. One he hadn't really expected, but, still. He turned his attention to Edward. "What about you, Fullmetal? Surely married life has given up a bit of an upheaval."
"Tell him about the time Winry kicked you out of bed."
Edward's jaw jutted at that reminder. "We're all right," he said.
"Not madly in love?" Roy teased.
Fullmetal's eyes narrowed sharply for an instant, then he sighed. Something flooded over his face, and Roy couldn't quite read it as Edward fell back into his chair, toying with his glass. "Not every experience you get is a good one," Edward said finally. "You learn the most from the worst ones." He picked up his glass and drained it. "Can we talk about something else?"
Roy almost opened his mouth to tease it out of the elder Elric, but decided against it at the last minute. "Fine. I expect both of you to come to my swearing in ceremony. It'll look good for me to have two heroes of Amestris there."
They agreed, and the talk moved on to other things, but Roy still wondered at Edward's expression for some time afterward.
It was a few days later that Riza walked into his office, a letter in her hand, a frown on her face. "Sir, when Edward was in town last week, did he mention Winry being pregnant?"
Roy shook his head.
"Winry's written me that she's much better now, and she'll be able to come with Edward to the ceremony." Riza raised her eyes to Roy's. "It seems she miscarried the baby."
The worst things are the ones you learn the most from. Roy hoped whatever lesson Edward took away from that loss, it hurt less than he imagined.
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