Disclaimer: I don't own FMA.

A/N: This is my attempt at the 100 Royai themes. Contains minor spoilers for chapter 102.

Theme #55: Infectious Crying

The unsteady clicking of boots against the concrete floor came closer and closer. He didn't need to see to know who this person was. He also didn't need to see to know exactly the expression that was etched on her face, which was a mixture of sorrow and fear. She sank down heavily onto her knees before him, her legs no longer possessing the strength to carry her weakened body. Their hands unconsciously sought each other and when they met their fingers curled together. The crimson liquid from her blood- stained hands soaked through his gloves and he could feel the ice-cold tinge of her skin.

"Colonel," she murmured, her voice wavering, "I'm so sorry."

"It's not your fault," he assured her as calmly as he possibly could.

"I failed. I…I couldn't protect you."

"You haven't failed."

"But…you can't see."

"That doesn't matter as long as I know that you're all right," he replied soothingly. "You're far more important."

"I don't believe that."

"But I do," he said as he pulled her against him and wrapped his arms around her. She rested her head against his chest and allowed herself to cry, her tears stinging as they trailed over the scratches on her cheek. She was shaking as her lungs desperately tried to take in oxygen between gut-wrenching sobs.

He knew there was nothing more he could do or say to comfort her, so he just held onto her as though she would disappear if he were to let go. He lowered his head next to hers as his gloved fingers ran through her golden hair which was now stained with her own blood; blood that never should've been spilled, blood that he knew she would all too willingly sacrifice for him without any regard for her own safety.

He couldn't understand why she would do such a thing for him. He was the reason for her emotional and physical suffering, yet her loyalty to him never wavered. He felt so undeserving of her, but he couldn't bear to let her go. It was selfish, but he didn't care. He loved her, and he knew without a doubt that she felt the same way about him even though those three little words remained unspoken.

She continued to cry as her hand weakly clutched the fabric of this uniform. This was the second time he made her cry. He just couldn't bear it any longer, so he gave into temptation and allowed the tears that had been building up in his unseeing eyes to flow freely down his face. If she was crying for his sake then he would cry for hers.