I don't own FMA. Future!Verse.
PARKINSON'S FIFTH LAW:
If there is a good way to delay an important decision, the good bureaucracy, public or private, will find it.
As the Fuhrer, Roy had the final say on all bills that were proposed. As his main adviser, Riza Hawkeye read the fine print of each and every proposal before it even touched his desk.
General Hawkeye gave a sigh of irritation as she read through the proposal in her hands. "I bet Havoc is responsible for this," she muttered to herself as she put the document to her left, her pile of absolutely not's, before she quickly snatched it back. It was perfect timing. The bill had been stamped with the arrival date of the nineteenth, and the holiday was on the twenty-seventh, the Generals would have adjourned their meeting by then, and proposals left unsigned would be dead. She looked over at Mustang, hunched over his mountain of paperwork, and slipped the bill to the bottom of her own pile of work.
At the end of the day she marked one edge of the paper red ink, so she could easily find it in a stack of paperwork, and put it at the bottom of the stack of proposals on Mustang's desk.
"It never stops," Roy moaned.
"I told you it wouldn't, Sir, at least not until you retire," she commented.
"At this rate, I'll die of exhaustion, first," he remarked as he reached for the last of his paperwork for the day.
"I won't let that happen, Sir," she promised.
"You've divided them up into yes, no, and maybe?" he asked hopefully, eying the pile of papers she'd just added to his desk.
She nodded, and he gave a sigh of relief.
"What would I do without you?" he asked.
"Sign everything?" she suggested
"Not funny, General," he admonished, his thoughts on some of the proposals he'd read through on her days off (requests for a holiday named after the Armstrongs, an increase in taxes for the funding of an obscure lab that had turned out to conduct alchemy experiments like Tuckers', and a variety of other strange requests).
"Of course not, Sir," she replied, a smile graced her face as she turned away from him, and went back to her desk to put everything away for the night.
Roy waited at the door, ever the gentleman, holding her coat out to her. She thanked him as she slipped into the coat, and they walked out of the building together. As they walked the two blocks before they went their separate ways small talk flowed between them. Just as they reached the corner at which they parted, Roy stopped.
"Did you forget something?" she asked, as she turned to face him.
"What are you doing for the holiday?" he asked.
"I haven't decided. I might go take flowers to some people I haven't visited in a while," she answered.
"A holiday in the country does sound tempting. You know, I know the owner of an inn in the South. I hear the weather is nice this time of year," he supplied, a smirk creeping over his features.
"We've talked about that before, Sir," she shot him down.
"Well then, have a good night, Riza," he called over his shoulder as he walked across the street, leaving her on the corner until the light changed for her to cross.
Everyday for the next week when she got to the office, at her usual early time, she found the red-marked proposal and moved it to the bottom of his workload, and the document was forgotten, until she got back from lunch the day before the holiday.
"Havoc, what are you doing, making a mess of those proposals!" she inquired.
"No need to yell," he called over his shoulder.
She looked over at Roy, leaning back in his chair as he watched Havoc tear through the proposals he'd moved to the spare desk in the room.
"Apparently he proposed a bill he wants me to sign before it goes null," Roy answered for the blond's behavior.
Riza blanched, and marched over to Havoc.
Havoc froze when he felt her breath on his neck.
"Cease and desist, that's an order," she hissed in his ear, loud enough only for him to hear.
"Y-yes, Sir," he stuttered, repressing a shiver at the murderous intent oozing from his long time comrade.
"I've just remembered something else I have to do, Fuhrer, Sir," he announced as he straightened up, surprised to find Riza was already across the room.
"Well, then, what was this proposal about?" Roy inquired.
Havoc looked back and forth from the amused face of Roy to the glare Riza was aiming at him, which was far worse than the aim of her guns.
"Nothing, Sir," Havoc replied. Riza's wrath was the one he feared the most.
"Does my order not outrank hers?" Roy asked, knowing it was Riza's presence that kept Jean from talking.
Havoc gulped, and then nodded.
"Well?" Roy prodded.
"It was about, well, uh…"
While Havoc stuttered his way through an explanation Riza spotted the document Roy had in front of him, and the edge of it was colored red. She could feel the blood draining from her face, he already knew. He'd known the whole time Havoc was looking for it, too embarrassed to admit what it was about.
"May I request a private audience with you for a moment, Sir?" Riza asked, her eyes locked on Roy's.
"Your dismissed, Havoc," Roy said, righting himself in his chair.
Havoc gave a sigh of relief and nearly ran out of the room.
"Miniskirts would be a nice change of scenery," Roy suggested, letting his eyes linger on her legs as his gaze traveled back down to the document in front of him.
Riza ignored his statement and desperately played the only card she had. "I heard that a certain proprietor of a certain inn in the Southern countryside still has an open room for the holiday," she told him.
"That certainly is interesting," he thought aloud.
"But, the reservation can only be held through the night, or someone else will be able to scoop it up," she explained.
"That complicates things a bit," he remarked, looking up at the clock on the opposite wall.
"You'd have to leave now in order to pack and make the train on time."
"This proprietor, she'll be there?" he asked, holding his pen over the proposal.
"As long as time permits," she answered, her eyes flickering to the clock.
"I think my pen's run out of ink," Roy complained, as he set it down on his desk.
"That's a shame, Sir," Riza commented.
"A damn shame, General," he added. "Well, I'll be calling it a day then."
Riza straightened up her desk, and met him at the door, as usual. They left the building together, as usual.
"Have a good holiday," Roy called as they parted two blocks later, to which Riza didn't answer.
Less than an hour later, at Central Station, Roy Mustang bumped into a woman he recognized. "Fancy meeting you here, General," he greeted, a glint of mischief in his eyes.
"You, too, Sir," she replied.
"Heading South?" he asked, as he put on a smile for those in the crowd that recognized him.
She nodded in response, the brim of her hat flopping with the movement of her head.
"Shall we share a cabin?" he asked.
"If you insist, Sir," she answered as they boarded their train.
"Really, now, what's with this Sir business, aren't we on holiday?" he asked.
"I believe you started it, Sir," she noted, following him into an empty cabin.
"Well, no more titles, Riza."
"Was that an order, I thought we were on holiday, Sir," she challenged as she took off her hat, and placed it on the seat beside her.
"Last one," he promised, as he put the luggage in the overhead rack, and sat across from her.
A.N. If the President does not sign the bill within the required time period, the bill becomes law by default. However, the exception to this rule is if Congress adjourns before the ten days have passed and the President has not yet signed the bill. In such a case, the bill does not become law; it is effectively, if not actually, vetoed. If the President does sign the bill, it becomes law. Ignoring legislation, or "putting a bill in one's pocket" until Congress adjourns is thus called a pocket veto. Since Congress cannot vote while in adjournment, a pocket veto cannot be overridden. Replace President with Fuhrer and Congress with Gathering of Generals XD...so yeah, pretty much crack, but I couldn't help myself. Thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoyed this little collection! So this piece and the last one kind of related back to what I call the "Guardian Arc" of my collection Back to Back. Riza owns the inn, because Gideon and Beulah have passed away and they left it to her, so the people she referred to taking flowers to are her father and them.
Thanks for reviewing: Dailenna, Bizzy, Kitsune Moonstar, Legendary Chimera, MoonStarDutchess, and Little Chemist.