Wow. This took a while. I think you guys are in for a loong story, just so you know. Hope you're okay with that.
Hope you enjoy this chapter!
Winry and Alphonse sat on the hard wooden bench in the waiting area of Central's main station. Missing their train, by merely minutes, had given Winry time to think about their spontaneous trip as she fiddled with the hem of her white sundress, eyebrows tensed in worry and thought. What if Ed came to while they were away? Knowing Ed, it was probable. Leave it to him to let his best friend and brother sit by his side for days trying to wake him up, only to do it the minute they left.
She thought about voicing her opinions to Al and asking him to stay, but she knew he would be disappointed if they didn't go. He had been chatting to her excitedly about the trip ever since confirming the plans with her grandmother, even taking an extra day off of work to pack and otherwise prepare. After thinking it over for a while, she decided it would be best to keep her thoughts to herself, unless Al brought something similar up, of course.
But if he didn't, would he blame her for not doing it herself?
"You know, it's your fault we missed it."
Winry's eyes widened; it was as if he had read her mind. "Missed what?"
Al shot her a look, the corners of his mouth dragging down to form a frown.
"...The train... what were you thinking of?"
Winry looked down at her hands. As much as she didn't want it to be, she knew it was a selfish request in its own way. She could always make up a little white lie, but Al was pretty perceptive and would probably see through it.
"Uh... I don't know. Stuff." Another look.
"Really, Winry? C'mon."
Sighing, she decided it was best to tell him what was on her mind.
"We should stay here."
Woops. That didn't exactly come out right.
Al looked disappointed. "But I've already paid for the tickets..."
"I know. I'm sorry. I'll pay you back for those, but-" She stopped at the look on Al's face. "What's wrong?"
"Huh? Oh... nothing." Al's vision had refocused onto Winry's face. "Thought I saw something by the bushes, is all. But anyways, why? I thought you wanted to go."
"I do, or, at least, I did. I was just thinking, how Ed-like would it be for him to come back while were there? I want to be there for him. I did a little research, and I found out that sometimes if people come out of a coma surrounded by strangers they have a higher chance of memory loss, and-"
"Winry, we both spent a ton of time talking to him. He'll be fine." Al interjected.
Winry huffed and put her hands on her hips, turning so she could fully face him.
"It's not the same. And besides, you know perfectly well that Ed wouldn't have left your side to eat or sleep or even to shower, for god's sake, if it were you in his situation. I don't understand why you wouldn't want to do the same. It's like you don't even care."
Al flinched, and for a second, Winry felt bad about her words. Then she remembered what she was defending.
"Seriously, though. Why don't you want to be there?"
"Were going, Winry. That's final." He snapped, an angered look on his face, which was rare. Too surprised to argue her point further, she mumbled an apology and looked down the track, trying to see if their train was coming into view.
When she saw it, she thought about pointing it out, but she didn't want to aggravate Al further. It took a lot to piss him off, and when he was, he was scary to talk to. It was something she tried to avoid. Fortunately, he noticed the approaching train himself, told her, and helped her up to the edge of the platform to board.
The train ride was long and boring, with only a spare alchemy text in Al's suitcase and the occasional snack from the passing food cart for entertainment. Winry was glad when they finally rolled into Resembool and reached the old yellow house of her childhood. They greeted Pinako and sat down to the meal she had prepared for them; it was well into the evening by the time they had settled.
"So," Pinako started, "How was Ed doing last you saw him?"
"Alright." Alphonse answered. "The doctor said his brain activity was increasing, so it might mean he's waking up."
Pinako nodded, and continued to eat. "And how about you, Winry?"
Winry tried a smile. "Still getting used to Central. It's so different from Rush Valley."
Pinako stared at her, eyes knowing and soft as the old woman could look. "Well, I'm glad you're settling in. Are you getting much automail business down there?"
"Actually, yeah. I have a few customers now, all old war vets. And every once in a while I go down to HQ and fix some of their machinery as well. It's decent."
They kept up talking until late, discussing how Pinako was doing by herself and if she was lonely without Den, who had died a few months ago, just before Winry had come to live with Ed and Al. Eventually, Al went up to bed and Winry followed shortly after, stopping in the bathroom to brush her teeth. After rinsing and spitting she went to her own room and changed into her comfy, flannel pyjamas.
She fell into her soft warm bed, and listened to the crickets chirping and the river rushing nearby. Sleep claimed her quickly, and she dreamed of happy things rather than Ed lying all alone in his hospital bed.
A part of me almost made this into a big fic filled with intense plotlines and angsty things and drama. But I didn't. I realized I don't have just a fluff fic. So I made one. If anyone wants a big plot-y thing, let me know and if enough people ask I could make an alternate version.
Also, I'm starting a 100 themes thing. Any name suggestions?
Reveiws are love !