Trust
By Henrika

Henrika- My first time using the Japanese titles! Always wanted to, though I think I will stick with the English for the majority of stories. For those of you who don't know:

Taisa-Colonel
Hagane no- Full Metal one

And I think I'll take Saya Aenslan's explanation for the contraction of Royai. I hope you don't mind, but I'm going to post that right here: "The word "Royai" comes from Japanese fandom. The katakana for Hawkeye is Hokuai. The Japanese reckoned Roihoku would look silly because of the vowel lenghtener in "hoku", so they chose Roiai instead. Then came the Western fans. They surfed Japanese sites, and saw the pairing name. Roiai looks silly to a Westerner, as does Royeye. So, Royai."

Thanks to anyone else who chipped in their opinion. Mystery solved!

On another note, boy, do I do a lot of Ed/Roy interaction. And torture. And angst. And confessions. And angst, can't forget that. And blood. And some more angst. Ah well. It seems to work in this fandom. Enjoy and Review!


"Taisa?"

"Yes, Hagane no?"

"Can I talk to you?"

"Of course. Have a seat." Edward did so, his small frame huddling in his cloak. "What is it?"

Edward looked to be working up his nerve to say something. Mustang stopped signing his paperwork; interested. Ed was usually so brash that hesitation was unheard of and unusual. "Well, um. There was something I wanted to tell you."

"Yes?"

The blonde cleared his throat, seemingly unsure of how to start. "I…"

"Spit it out Hagane no. I don't have all day." Edward turned scarlet at that and sputtered angrily for a moment before his eyes caught a framed photograph on Mustang's desk. He sobered immediately.

Roy followed his sightline and realized Ed was staring at the picture of him and Maes. It took him a moment to realize that Ed was speaking softly. "…I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm so sorry."

"Edward?"

"I'm sorry I didn't tell you about lab five. I'm sorry I caused Hughes' death. I'm sorry I didn't trust you enough. I'm sorry I didn't trust you."

The thought vaguely crossed Roy's mind that Edward was his own judge, jury, and executioner. The boy was shaking violently in his seat, continuing his apologetic mantra until Mustang finally thought to stop him. "Hagane no. Hagane no!" But Edward didn't seem to hear him and he finally had to stand up and go shake the boy's shoulders before he quieted.

The golden eyes, dim and thick with emotion looked up at him slowly. "I'm sorry I didn't trust you."

"Why?" The question slipped before Roy could stop it and Edward looked up at him in confusion, forcing clarification. "Why didn't you trust me? Why do you think you caused Brigadier General Hughes' death?" Roy rested his palms against the armrest and the couch back, making Ed couldn't leave without explaining his sudden breakdown.

"He helped us. He got too close to the stone because of us and he was murdered and it's my fault!" Unshed tears glassed over his eye and his fingers dug into the black leather of the couch. "And no one had the decency to even tell us that he was dead."

Roy paused and collected his words carefully. "Hughes…" He fought off the catch in his own throat and continued, "helped people no matter what, regardless of the danger to himself. He truly believed in you two and that's why he did everything he could to help. His death was not your fault. It was not your fault." He repeated at the look of protest. "It was the fault of his murderer and we will hunt him down. Now answer the other question."

"I…I wanted to. I wanted to believe that you didn't blame me, that'd you'd understand everything that happened, but…"

"But…" Roy prompted.

"But I've been on my own for so long now. I've been the only one to know all of the sins I've committed, the only one to know all of what's happened to me, the only one who can fix things. And yeah, I have Al with me, but he's my responsibility. I don't want to burden him with anymore than I already have. It's been up to me to fix my mistake and I, I, I trusted Hughes and look what happened! I don't want to have the people I care about die because of me! I couldn't trust you because I couldn't let you get involved! I can't let any of you get hurt!"

There was a long pause, filled only with Edward's harsh breathing, before Mustang spoke. "It's not up to you Edward. It's not up to you whether we care about you, whether we help you, whether we sacrifice for you, whether we do dangerous things in your stead." The look of protest was back, but Roy carried on. "It is up to you whether you accept that help. It's up to you to decide how much you want to let us in and care about us."

"But…"

"I'm flattered that you wanted to protect me Edward, but part of caring is trust. You have to be able to believe that sometimes people will keep their promises, that they'll help you, that they'll take care of you and your brother. You have to know that sometimes we can protect ourselves and you too. You don't have to take everything on your own. Do you understand?"

Ed nodded slowly, blinking away the teary haze in his eyes. "Yeah. I…yeah."

"Good. I think you trust me. I think that's why you came to me in the first place. Now, do you trust me? Not as part of the military, but me in myself?"

Another slow nod.

"Then I trust you to tell me everything. Let's start at the beginning."

And unbelievably, Edward smiled.


Henrika- It never seemed like Ed got the chance to apologize to anyone for Hughes' death. Yeah, he talked to Gracia in the manga, but she wouldn't really let him. I'm somewhat surprised that I made Roy let him, but it seemed to work out alright. It would be just like Ed to get on one track and not be able to stop.What do you think?