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Chapter Eight:
Dream Come True

Ed woke up to a warm sensation on his stomach, where his stab wound was. The pain went through him like electricity, and he leapt straight up, biting back a cry of pain. A hand touched his chest, stopping him from sitting up too far, and he opened his eyes fully to look right into Winry's eyes.

Mascara had been running down her face from the previous night, and she had made no effort to wipe it away. She hiccupped and smiled warmly at him. "Ed, I . . . Thank god you're alright." She leaned in to hug him gently, and he tensed at first, and then wrapped an arm around her waist.

"'Course I'm okay," he said confidently, backing away as she released him. He leaned his head on the backboard. Winry placed a cool cloth on his forehead, and started to wrap his wound in gauze wrap. He winced, a bead of sweat dripping from his chin and onto the top of her hand. She looked up and flipped the cloth over, dabbing his face. He smiled at her. "How're your wounds?"

"Nothing sleep won't fix," she said, smiling at him. "A few puncture wounds from splinters, but I had Al get those out for me. My back's a little sore, but all I need is some rest. Let's worry about you now, okay?" Ed sighed through his nose, trying his hardest not to show how much it hurt that she applied pressure around the wound to wrap his stomach up. When she finished, having wrapped it twice around just in case, she took the cloth off of his head and brushed a few stray hairs from his face. "All done."

Ed opened his eyes and looked at her with a warm, loving smile. He sat up straight and pulled her into an embrace that made her cheeks burn against his bare shoulder. He held her tightly to his chest, and felt her hands on his shoulders, keeping herself pressed to his hard body. She nestled into his shoulder and broke down, Ed consoling her any way he could.

He placed a kiss on the top of her head. "Easy, Winry. You'll exhaust yourself if you cry hard like that." He lifted her up and looked right into her eyes. "Winry, I . . . I'm sorry for everything. For leaving you alone, for not calling, for not writing . . . for almost not coming back to tell you that I . . ." his cheeks caught fire and were the color of a tomato, but he couldn't push himself to say anything else on the subject, and he pulled her to himself again, this time hissing as he made her accidentally poke his wound with her elbow.

Winry's eyes softened and she pulled away to rest her forehead on his. "Ed, please. I wasn't very good with watching your backs disappear before my eyes. You know that; that's the last time I saw my parents, and they were killed. I didn't know if you'd be alive the last time I saw you or if you'd be in a casket." She started crying again, but this time instead of being pulled into an embrace, she felt a pair of lips on hers.

Winry's eyes had immediately closed, and she wrapped her arms around his neck, her fingers playing in his hair that was loose at his shoulders. Ed let out a quiet moan and pulled her further into him. He wrapped both of his arms around her and put his left hand on the back of her head. They broke for air, and Ed lingered on her bottom lip for a second longer. He pulled away and embraced her.

"I love you, Edward," Winry's voice was slick with worry, as if he'd reject her.

All he said was "I know, Win."

He pulled her into a longer, hungrier, kiss, and Winry knew that's all she needed as her answer. And, by the way he kissed her, it was quite obvious what his feelings for her were. She let out a quiet moan, and soon she was in his lap kissing him with fervor.

I never would've realized, Ed thought as he pulled her closer and ignored the sting by his stomach, how much she'd meant to me if I'd stayed in Central.

-x-x-

Al and Roy sat in the living room, Al staring out the window and Roy sipping some tea on the opposite couch. Al couldn't help but notice the triumphant smile on Roy's face as he sipped his tea. "You knew the whole time, didn't you, sir?"

Roy put his cup down and quirked an eyebrow. "Who, me? Al, no one could've been able to see this coming. Unless they were dealing with a forgotten case from two years back, that is."

Al's eyes widened in shock, and he took out his glasses to clean them against his T-shirt. "Calloway is a criminal? What else had he done? I hadn't heard of this case, and I remember every single case I deal with. Surely you can't be thinking of someone else?"

"I never forget, Alphonse," Roy said sternly, crossing one leg over the other. "You might be my best detective, but I have one of the best memories in the Military after being in it since I was sixteen. This was a case we'd had before you had come home. His name back then wasn't Calloway, but instead Cameron. He must've taken his mother's name to cover up his shadowed life. I had a suspicion and was aware that you'd had yours too upon seeing my mood a few days ago."

Al nodded, and realized it was way too quiet upstairs. "I should probably go make sure they haven't killed each other yet. This is the longest they've been together in a while, they're probably at each other's throats by now . . ."

"Let them be, Detective," said Roy with a smile on his face. He took another sip of tea, and Al quirked an eyebrow at him, then sat back down on the opposite couch. "They might very well be chewing each other out, but that doesn't mean there should be a third target. Let them be alone for a while. God knows they need it."

Al sighed and knew he was right, and picked up a newspaper that was sitting on the coffee table.

He's right. They might fight, but that's their way of saying they care enough to say the other was wrong. Sure enough, they'll realize just how much the other matters to them and cares for them.

Al took a second, then a smile broke onto his face as he pulled the paper further up so his smile was hidden from Roy.

Wouldn't that be a dream come true?


And that concludes this really, painfully long story.

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~Cookie