Just a thought I had, we all know General Gruman propositions his granddaughter's hand in marriage to Roy, and I believe it has been cited that that granddaughter is Riza. However, when did Roy make that connection? I can't see him realizing that blood relation until later on in the game. Here's my take on his realization and reaction.

I think this happens in both the manga and the anime, so it could go either way, no real spoilers I don't think.

I don't own Fullmetal Alchemist. Anyone who thinks I do is stupid, I'd be too busy making sure the anime continued so Roy and Riza could finally get together to write fan fiction if I did. Yet here I am writing fan fiction, so I couldn't possibly own it.


The day had started out like any other day. Come to work late, pretend to push around the piles of paper on his desk enough that Hawkeye would think he was doing work (not that he ever actually fooled her, but it never hurt to try) then slip away sometime after lunch for a game or three of chess with the Lt. General Gruman in his private office if the elder gentleman was free for the afternoon. That was at least two or three times a week, and barricading himself in the General's office soon became his best escape from his own subordinates and work. Staring at the chess set laid out neatly between them, the Lt. Colonel mused back to the first time he'd spoken with the old war hero, leaning on his cane as he calmly but warmly welcomed them to their assignment at Eastern. Dismissing his subordinates, the old man had invited the Lt. Colonel to play his first game of chess since he was a child and thus embarked on the pattern of conversation that would come every time they spoke after that point.

The General would stroke his mustache, moving the same pawn, the one in front of his king, two forward, as he did at the start of every game while asking how the Lt. Colonel found time to amuse an old man like him. Mustang would then reply that there was nothing that his subordinates couldn't handle for him in those stacks of paper and the General would laugh knowingly. (Hawkeye was too good at what she did to let them fall behind, even if he did slack off horribly, and always covered for him regardless of the cost.)

Two or three moves would pass, then Gruman would lean back in his chair and comment on the reputation the Flame Alchemist had among the military women. The trail of ladies he'd been with seemed to grow by the day, according to the local gossip, and the alchemist would shrug and smile smugly when the old man asked jokingly just how much of that rumor was true. (He did take several women out on a weekly basis, but he didn't discourage the tales of his sexual prowess even if most of the ladies couldn't possibly know that. He made a point not to sleep with those pretty faces if he wasn't too intoxicated to remember the next day and that happened only once in a very long while.)

And then, of course, would come the part Mustang had come to call the 'Gruman's Granddaughter Proposition'. The General would joke with him about women, and some of his supposed exploits as a young man, then move on to how thankful he was for his wife, though. How war changed a man, and there was nothing like a strong woman to remind him that there was good in this world. Roy would nod, absently, refraining from voicing his own thoughts (he would never marry, force another to put up with his scars and stains and sin that was piled far higher than the general would ever know, his subordinates, especially his sharp-shooter, bore enough of that for him) until the General mentioned once again that he had a granddaughter the Lt. Colonel's age. Beautiful, he would claim, with lovely golden hair and the prettiest eyes, not to mention she was an incredible cook. Would the famous Flame Alchemist be interested in settling down with this fine specimen of womanhood? Roy would laugh, and shake his head. Shouldn't he meet her first, perhaps get her opinion on the matter? The General would laugh as well with a shake of his head, the girl would never settle of her own accord, of that he was sure, she only needed a push in the right direction with a good man to see what she was missing being single. Besides, he was sure the Lt. Colonel had seen her around the Eastern Headquarters; he just didn't know it yet.

Internally, Roy would doubt that he was a good man, but of course he just smiled and they would move on. As always, he would ask if she had a name, and the General would say yes, she did, one that suited her very well, but then smile and remain silent after that.

Generally, a period of quiet contemplation would follow before the Lt. Colonel would remark to himself that the General was a crafty old fox and be forced into a checkmate a few moves later. He had improved some; the first time they had played he had lost within seconds of the General's proposition. But it was only to prolong the inevitable defeat that came with the first game. Of course, Gruman would ask if he needed to get back to the office, and Roy would usually laugh and reply he had time for at least one more game.

The rounds that followed would pass with discussions of work or military tactics or almost anything under the sun. Safe subjects that wouldn't touch on the darkness of Ishabal or the war that forced Gruman to use a cane or the many disturbing underlying currents that were becoming apparent in the machine of the military they were both chained to for life. Sometimes Roy would spin tales of his men and their silly antics in the office, and sometimes the General would tell stories of his early days in the army and the trouble he had gotten into in his time in the academy.

Occasionally, in very rare instances, the discussion would turn personal, and Roy might learn something about the General's family, or he might even find himself sharing something in return. It was odd, at those times, he held a great respect for the older man, and hoped in some respects to be like him when he reached that age. If he reached that age.

Apparently, today was to be one of those days. The General had helped him set their fourth game, both settling in as Roy flippantly asked if the General only had one granddaughter as it was the only family member he seemed to bring up besides his wife. The General had paused, stroking his mustache, before he went with his usual opening move and replied in a low voice.

"She is the only grandchild I have. I was only blessed with two sons, one died of the military and the other alchemy. She is the last of my line, and I am very proud of her."

About to apologize for stumbling upon such a difficult truth, the old man waved him off and smiled, picking up a tin from one of the end tables and passing it over to him. Popping the lid revealed freshly baked ginger cookies, his favorite the old General explained before adding his granddaughter had delivered them that very morning. Roy accepted one, commenting that they were very good before they went back to the game and more light banter on the topic of women's shoes. The General confessed his wife had many pairs that looked very much alike to him, and he wasn't sure why they were all necessary, but it made her happy when he noticed a particular pair and he took pleasure in keeping his wife happy.

The Lt. Colonel had laughed and replied he only knew one woman that wore the same pair of shoes almost every day, and he heavily suspected it was only because the military-issue boots were easy to run in and thus were more pragmatic than heels when saddled with the task of keeping tack of the notoriously lazy Flame Alchemist. He paused a moment, then added he had only seen the said women in heels a few times outside of the office and honestly couldn't remember if they had been the same pair each time but doubted she was the collector of footwear most women seemed to be. Musing aloud that it was likely she collected guns rather than shoes at all, the General had laughed for a long time upon hearing that before beating him three moves later in a sneak-attack he never saw coming.

A glance up showed the sun barely peaking over the horizon, the clock suddenly tolling the sixth hour. The Lt. Colonel winced; he usually made sure to be back before the sixth bell just in case there was work left he needed to do, as the General sighed and began to put away the old set, a soft knock at the door startling them from their quiet.

"Sir? Second Lieutenant Hawkeye here to see you."

"Send her in," the General replied, the door opening to admit a rather worried looking Riza who relaxed the moment she spotted her immediate superior, going into the automatic salute in the presence of the Lt. General Gruman. "Sir! My apologies for interrupting, but I require the Lt. Colonel Mustang's signature on some of the file work, and it must be completed by tonight."

"I'm coming, I knew you had a few things you needed me to do and I didn't mean to stay this long," Mustang replied quickly, shaking hands with the General before saluting him respectfully and reaching for the coat he'd shed halfway through the first game.

"A word, Riza," the General said as he drew the Lt. Colonel's subordinate over to the side, Roy smirking as he prepared to hear the General tease him about his lousy chess skills while he was busy getting the many buttons and snaps redone or a compliment for keeping him in line as she did most of the time. What the General did say, however, was the last thing he expected to hear come out of the man's mouth. "You're coming tonight, right? Mother's been quite excited about seeing her little Riza out of uniform this week, and has cooked your favorite meal in honor of the occasion."

"Yes, I'm coming," she replied with a smile, glancing up to give Roy a puzzled look when she realized he was standing there staring at them with an odd expression on his face and half of his buttons still undone. "Is everything alright, sir?"

"Yeah, just a moment." He quickly finished buttoning himself up, ignoring the way the General chuckled in quiet amusement as he forced himself not to blush. He opened the door for them, letting Hawkeye lead the way before exchanging looks with the old man.

"The offer still stands, Mustang," Gruman said with a smile as Roy chuckled nervously, his voice coming out a few octaves higher than normal.

"Ah…thanks. Maybe later."

The General just laughed again knowingly, closing the door though his last words still made it back to the Lt. Colonel. "I'm sure of that."

"What offer, sir?" asked Riza as they made their way back to the office, Roy pointedly not looking at her as he adjusted his collar and sleeves, finding several minute details quick required his immediate and full attention.

"Ah…nothing." He cleared his throat, shoving his hands in his pockets as he tried to organize his thoughts. "So…you have plans tonight?"

"Yes, I usually try and have dinner with my grandparents at least once a month," she replied calmly as though her lineage was common knowledge. Perhaps it was, perhaps he was the only one in Easter who hadn't made that connection yet. They reached the office and she immediately put a stack of papers in his hands. "Please sign these, sir."

"They need to be dropped off at the mail center, right?" he replied as he watched her pack up her things, obviously waiting for him to finish before she could leave. "Go ahead and go, Lieutenant, I would hate to keep the…your grandfather waiting."

"Are you sure, sir? It's no trouble…"

"Go, Hawkeye, I'm perfectly capable of doing some work on my own," he replied teasingly, quickly heading back to familiar ground where he felt comfortable. Tentatively, though, he added, "Those cookies were quite good; you should bring some for us some time."

The sharp-shooter paused, as if confused, then smiled as she realized what he was talking about with a nod. "Thank you, sir. I'm surprised he shared them, he's quite protective of his ginger cookies."

"He must have been in a sharing mood," he replied, a slightly sarcastic undertone to his voice as he remembered the ever present proposition. "Goodnight, Hawkeye, I'll see you in the morning."

"Goodnight, sir."

He set the papers down, running a hand through his hair with a sigh once the door was closed. The old man was crazy! He'd thought it was just some nameless, forever faceless beauty that the General referred to every time they played chess, no his immediate and most reliable subordinate! He hadn't even known Riza still had a grandfather to speak of, let alone one that was now their highest local superior in terms of rank.

"Good gods above…!"

The old man was right about a couple things, though, he mused as he went back to work, his hand lazily scrawling his name across the required lines. Riza was beautiful, with lovely golden hair and the prettiest eyes you'd ever seen. And really, she was a good cook, she'd had plenty of practice cooking for him and her father growing up…and her name suited her very well. Hawkeye, the best shot in probably the entire military, certainly the best at the Eastern Headquarters. She'd been put on the front lines as a cadet because of her phenomenal skills, he was lucky they'd let her out of front-line duty when the war ended. An eye like hers would be quite useful out along the restless boarders; it was only because of his considerable influence as a 'war hero' that his request to have her in his command hadn't been ignored by their superiors.

He smiled, allowing his mind to wander, just for a moment, down the path of what might happen if he did take Gruman up on his offer. Would she give in, as the General seemed so sure of himself, or would she laugh at them before pointing her gun in their faces and saying the joke was in very poor taste? Even if she did give in, what would being married to Riza be like? Honestly, he couldn't imagine much past the reality that she would have to quit the military immediately. And a stay a home mom was not how he envisioned Riza. She was too independent to meekly sit at home and be content with mending his clothes and cooking meals. Especially since he needed her firmly by his side if his dream was to ever be fully realized, and she knew that just as well as he did.

Finishing the pile, he neatly shuffled them in the right order before picking up the entire stack and heading down the corridor, wondering if Riza knew about her grandfather's propositions and if he gave them to anyone else, ever.

"Lt. Colonel?"

Mustang turned to find the said General behind him, teasing smile in place as he limped along to stand alongside his subordinate.

"A word to the wise," he said in a low, conspiratorial type tone. "My granddaughter isn't exactly aware of our…conversations, and would probably be less than pleased if she were to find out. Not that I'm taking back the offer, I really do think she'd make a fine wife for you, but until you decide to say 'yes' lets just keep it between you and me, hm?"

The General was making his way down the hall before Roy could reply and was completely out of sight by the time he'd come with a suitable reply period. Shaking his head, he headed towards the place he needed to drop the papers at while firmly dumping the entire matter out of his head, for it made life entirely too complicated. Almost. Somehow, the image of waking up next to one unclothed Riza was an incredibly pleasant one, and he smiled as he allowed that single part to stay as he sauntered down the hall.


The End. Thoughts? Praise? Complaints? Please review and let me know as always! Its been a pleasure, having you along for the short ride, and until next time.


Everything is ok in the end; if it's not ok it's not the end.