Disclaimer: Sakura-Angel doesn't sound like Arakawa Hiromu, does it? Too bad, I'd like it if I was a genius...
Sakura-Angel: Ack, don't hurt me! I'm sorry if they're off horribly, or if a normal-sized bicycle would never fit in a trunk, but don't hurt me. Please. I'm just trying Roy x Hawkeye out, you know... random one-shot ideas and all. I'm just an unsuspecting authouress poking around different fandoms.
This was quite possibly the most humiliating thing he'd ever been subjected to.
And one of the absolute worst things about it was that it was completely avoidable. Ah, if only they hadn't run out of gas, the raven-haired man sighed.
It all started one fateful friday evening. It was the night of Elysia's school play, and a Visit the week earlier meant an invite from the little mischief-maker herself.
Lieutenant Hawkeye came uncharacteristically with him to the doorstep, eyes following the little girl dancing circles around them.
She spun and posed, telling them all about the play and how she was the star. She made comments about the colour of Riza's hair (the best yellow ever) and asked if Mustang liked the lady with pretty hair (because he kept looking at her).
Roy then immediately said he didn't do that, did he, while watching Riza's breath snag and her back become ram-rod straight. The truth was he'd rather sound like a bit of a condescending ass than admit he was noticing that his confidante's hair was, in fact, the nicest yellow he'd ever seen.
But enough of that. This was really about the invite anyway.
So, a week later she picked him up to go to the play. Well, in a very un-Hawkeye-like way, the gas tank of the car emptied itself halfway down the road (Roy suspected her dog playing a part in it, but whatever). But in a quite-Hawkeye-like way, she had a backup plan.
Now, Roy would've walked to avoid this. He'd would've pushed the car with her in it to avoid this. But, let's face it, he was up against her, and she was very possibly the most intimidating woman he'd ever known. Not that she herself was intimidating of course, he was just intimidated by the fact that he could like--
Anyways. He sat calmly in his seat, looking out the rearview boredly because he was him, and tensed slightly at what she pulled out of the trunk.
His eyebrows went up.
A single bicycle.
Hawkeye bent down to look through the open window. "Would you mind it? Two people on one bicycle?" She'd let her hair down tonight, and the occasional blonde strand would find its way to his cheek, blown in by the breeze.
He put his fingers on the handle to pop open the door, and she moved out of the way.
Once he was out, he adjusted his collar, turning away from her so she hopefully couldn't tell he was lying through his teeth. "Yes, I would mind it very much. It goes against my beliefs as an avid cyclist."
He felt her looking at him funny and turned around to fix her with his own look. "What is it?"
"Nothing," she said a little amusedly. Was she laughing at him?
"What?" He tried not to gape stupidly at the bicycle she was wheeling over. "You take it! My principles and all... I'll run beside you or something like that."
Her eyes were half-lidded with a blend of disbelief and skepticism. Wait a second. Were her eyes that colour all the time? He couldn't possibly have missed that amber all these years...
"Colonel..." her tone said 'Are you stupid?' but he was sure she'd say it more delicately. "You're not serious."
Normally, he would've grinned suavely and said 'Absolutely!', but something about her threw that version of him completely off. Instead, he managed to shrug and stammer a "Why not?", hands buried in pockets, almost sheepish.
She gave him a comical look, directing her line of vision at the bike at her side after. "Well... I think that'd be a bit exhausting for you, sir. Pardon my opinion." An image of him jogging alongside her, puffing while taking ridiculously long strides, popped into her head. She held back laughter, but the lightness of it crept into her tone. "Now, should you pedal, or should I?" And she lifted her head to smile kindly at him, not something she usually did, but was met with the seat of his trousers.
She blinked. "Sir..." Was he... stretching?
"Oh!" he jumped up, doing an unintentional about-face. "Just... limbering up for the run...!"
Another wave of laughter was held back. "Roy..." An alarm went off in her head, but only faintly as caught up in this as she was (how long had it been since she'd called him that?) "Do you know how to ride a bicycle?"
"Of course," he feigned an offended look. "Of course I know how to ride a bicycle. I got my first helmet when I was six and the training wheels were off by s--"
"Roy." A stern look, layered lightly with laughter.
His head drooped immediately. "No. I don't know how to ride a goddamn bicycle," he mumbled, embarassed and ashamed. He braced himself for laughter. As understanding as she could be, there was no way she wouldn't start at least giggling at him...
But nothing came. Only the feel of a warm hand on his back.
There it was again. Why did she keep calling him that? He wanted to pull away and ask her, but he couldn't. Something kept him there, told him that maybe it wasn't so scary or strange. Maybe it was just right.
"Do you want to learn?"
He looked over from her bent form to her face, a small smile on her lips.
A part of him wanted to refuse. He didn't know if he could take her seeing him as someone other than Colonel Roy Mustang, smooth, confident. But then he realized she already had.
Was he bothered?
His eyes refocused, taking in her neck, stretched out a little more to look at him, her mouth, upturned at the corners in a gesture not many people recieved from her.
No, no he wasn't.
"I would like that," he accepted, sounding weary but glad.
Her smile widened, newly-noticed amber eyes warming as well. "Come." And finding a courage she didn't know she had, took his hand.
He followed dumbly, stunned at the gentle hold she had on him. Suddenly, she let go and pressed his hand to a handlebar.
"I'll be with you," she said softly, looking into his eyes, raw. They seemed almost like they belonged to a child, looking up at her with a trust unspoken.
He pedalled with her next to him for support, as always. Only this support was more... personal. Or appreciated. Or... something. Whatever it was, he felt that it was needed, and only she could provide it.
His legs were extremely aware of each other, making sure they weren't in the way of the other. His pedalling was jerky and he was so focused on his feet, he was too busy to worry about the state of his pride. He moved slowly down the sidewalk with Riza at his side, watching so tenderly he almost wished she wasn't.
So many times he'd wondered what made her stay beside him. He'd questioned, scrutinized, examined. But now, he felt he didn't need to know.
All he needed was this. Her, with him, through whatever. Her weight balancing his so he could move right. Her soft hand against his own calloused one. The smell of her, the amber of her eyes.
The best yellow ever trailing fluidly behind them in the breeze.