This story's name was originally Reconstruction, but I found another fan fiction (which is pretty fantastic, by the way) that involved characters that I play with in this story a lot Riza, Roy, and Scar, so i decided to change it to what it was originally going to be called 'Restoration.'
There are canon pairings in this story like Royai and Edwin, but there also some made up ones too.
Warnings: Anyway, this story has gore in it, and I just wanted to warn everyone beforehand especially if that's something you don't like. There may also be curse words. Anything else that may need a warning will be mentioned in the author's not of the chapter.
Riza's eyelids fluttered open and she immediately rose out of bed. Throughout the night, apprehension swirled in her belly, her skin prickled, and she tossed and turned in her bed, tangling the sheets between her bare legs. Despite being plagued with nightmares, she hadn't always slept this terribly and this particular night she hardly slept at all. She zoned in and out of consciousness before she realized it was time to head to work.
Hot water sprinkled from the shower head, the streams and droplets of water traced her body, flowing like rivers through mountains and canyons. After her much too short shower, she rubbed her tired eyes and shrugged on her itchy, blue uniform, which was adorned with three golden stripes and stars on her epaulets, after the courageous acts on the Promise Day she had been promoted to a Captain.
Chai tea with milk and cinnamon kept her heavy eyelids from closing shut. She savored the sweet liquid in her mouth before swallowing. She sighed. Since moving to Ishval, her sleeping pattern had become erratic, the memories of the awful war continued to torment her, and living in the desert was a constant reminder of the blood that had once stained the sand. Because the Restoration Campaign was in it's infancy, Riza lived in the barracks, only ranks of Colonel or higher had their own house since Ishval was a work in progress and housing for lower ranking soldiers had not been completed yet. Luckily though, because of her rank, she lived in private living quarters, though the walls weren't very thick or well insulated and the other people living in the building were loud, possibly another reason for her terrible sleep.
Lost in thought, she hardly noticed the soft pawing at her legs and the whimpering of her black and white dog at her feet. Her eyes widened when she noticed a chewed and destroyed hair clip in the dog's mouth, she groaned. "Bad dog!" she raised her voice, pointing her finger at Hayate, who whined and dipped his tail between his legs. She ran her hand in her damp, loose hair and sighed before grabbing the hair clip and making a disgusted face when she picked up the slobbered, chewed up plastic. Her only option was to wear her hair loose, though it wasn't favorable. She made the disaster prone dog perform simple commands before feeding him and heading off to work.
Not to her surprise, she was the first to arrive at the office in the newly constructed Ishval Headquarters. No one was expected to arrive for another half hour. The Restoration Campaign had begun months ago, the rest of Mustang's former unit, (excluding Falman who was still stationed in Briggs), Lieutenant Rebecca Catalina, others allies of Mustang, Major Miles, and Scar, as well as hundreds of other soldiers, were now stationed in Ishval.
Just as Riza had finished distributing documents on Roy's desk, the doors of the office opened and Fuery walked in, fixing the crooked glasses on his face.
"Good morning, Warrant Officer Fuery" she greeted the younger soldier, before taking a seat and reading through her own assigned documents.
"Good morning, Captain Hawkeye!" he cheerfully exclaimed, and as much as Hawkeye was fond of him she wasn't exactly as cheerful as he was this morning. He stared at her for a moment, a little concerned by the apparent bags under her eyes and surprised by her loose blond locks. Hawkeye had often been the epitome of a perfect soldier, but it was clear to Fuery and the others, that she became somewhat despondent since their transfer to Ishval, and hers and Mustang's eyes, had taken on a haunted look. "Are you feeling alright this morning, Captain?"
The other men and Lieutenant Rebecca Catalina shuffled in the office, all minutes away from being late. Rebecca and Havoc were bickering about something and Breda rolled his eyes at them. After being cured with the philosopher's stone, Havoc quickly recovered and was able to return work after his temporary paralysis, he and everyone in the unit was promoted for their acts during the Promise Day.
Riza glanced up at Fuery and gave him a small smile, "I'm fine Sergeant," she nodded grateful of his concern.
The five soldiers worked diligently before Mustang walked in the office with his haunted eyes and an expression of irritation. Hawkeye scanned her superior, noticing he must have also not slept, "General?"
"Captain, we are needed for an unexpected meeting in the conference room" he spun on his heel toward the hall and Riza followed after him. He was quiet on the walk to the room, his shoulders were stiff, fists clenched at his sides, and his movement was irregular.
"Is everything alright, sir?" she questioned in a concerned and smooth voice. She was worried since he had been uneasy since walking into the office. She knew him well enough and much like her he hadn't slept at all the night before.
"Yes, Captain." he responded, his posture and tone obviously betraying his answer. She didn't inquire further; Ishval Headquarters was not a place to talk about their nightmares and concerns, they both needed comforting but this wasn't the place to do it. She reached for his hand, which was two steps in front of her, and squeezed his in her smaller one, a gesture of comfort. She wasn't sure what caused that sudden act, but instincts told her he needed it. He half turned towards her and gave a weak smile, his face was placid but his dark eyes were etched with distress. By the number of wrinkles formed under his eyes, she could count the days he hadn't slept.* His eyes…she swallowed what felt like a lump in her throat, when she remembered his once blind state, and part of her wanted to reach out to him more.
Mustang joined the others at the large conference table, Riza stood behind him, analyzing the room. Seated was Major Miles, two Ishvalan priests, Scar, who now went by Brother, as well as Generals and other soldiers from other regions. Except for General Armstrong couldn't make it due to a quarrel with Drachma and General Lieutenant General Doyle of the East (who usually let Roy take his place in any meeting that involved Ishval).
"Good morning," Mustang greeted all of the visiting military personnel "As you are all aware, there have been conflicts throughout the nation regarding the Restoration Campaign. Unfortunately, radicals who are against reforming Ishval are taking a drastic approach to the situation. Major Miles if you will…" Mustang signaled Major Miles to speak.
"Yes, General," Major Miles walked around the room, he wasn't wearing his sunglasses so his red eyes visible. He tilted his head in the direction of bald and blind old Ishvalan, who had a white beard, and was dressed in a colorful, silk robe, "Priest Aatu, who is a valuable traveling informant in this Campaign has told us about the murders of many Ishvalan refugees around the nation"
Scar, or Brother rather, was sickened by the news albeit he already heard it first hand from the traveling Priest; it didn't help when he observed the visiting military personnel, all of which seemed uninterested in the awful news. Brother's gaze trailed to General Mustang and Captain Hawkeye who although appeared calm, their eyes showed they were disturbed. He knew he would never forgive the two soldiers for all the lives of his people they stole during the war, but he endured and trusted them. At that moment Hawkeye's earthy eyes locked with Scar's red eyes, they both stared at each other, understanding what the other was thinking about the situation. Now being the Grand Cleric, the spiritual leader and prophet of the Ishvalan religion, Scar is the one to oversee everything General Mustang plans for Ishval before anything is finalized and he has become a valuable ally of Mustang's.
Mustang stood up, taking over the meeting again, "We cannot have these radicals instill fear of Ishvalans into the rest of Amestris. I propose we work together to put a stop to their defiance," he scanned the faces around the room, Hawkeye gave him a small smile (which to anyone else may have gone unnoticed) to show her support. Others in the room nodded but the Generals and their right hands were disgruntled.
Major General Dawson spoke first, "General Mustang, I understand you're in charge of liberating the Ishvalans, but I assure you that I do not need your help with capturing the radicals in my region" he vehemently expressed. Miles and Scar cast a repulsed glare at the General, he was speaking about their people as if they were prisoners or slaves. Dawson was a Brigadier General of the West region before being promoted to Major General after the one who originally had the position was incarcerated for his participation in Father's plan for an immortal army. He, like Hakuro, weren't fond of Mustang because of his fast rise in the military; they were even more enraged when he was promoted to a Major General, skipping two ranks from a Colonel.
"I will have to agree with Major General Dawson," the gray-haired General Ivers jibed
"If we work together we have a better chance at capturing these outlaws," Roy stated coolly, remaining firm on his position.
"Actually," Dawson sneered, "anything that involves the Ishvalan people really is your territory, General" Mustang examined the man, in disbelief of his attitude towards the situation.
"While you have a few thousand Ishvalans to handle, the Major Generals and I have to deal with hundreds of thousands of people in our regions. I'm not sure if this is our area specifically, but we will do what we can to assist in the arrest of the radicals" Hakuro interjected
Scar gaped, was indifference over Ishvalan deaths still this prevalent? He didn't say anything, politics wasn't his strong suit, and instead he let the officers' duke out their dilemma.
Roy was vexed with the Generals for not being cooperative. It was no secret that the men didn't respect him, and it was clear that they disliked him also. Just as Mustang was about to speak, Miles, who was displeased with the exchange cut him off, "With all due respect, Generals, this is not just about prejudices against the Ishvalan people, this is about the unnecessary murders that have occurred in the nation" Miles folded his arms behind his back "Surely, there is more you can do than just assist," his voice was firm and his red eyes bore into the men.
The Generals and their right hands had much more respect for Major Miles, and decided to cooperate, but after hours of trying to scheme the arrest of the unknown radicals, the group decided to take a break for lunch, the meeting would continue after their meals.
Hawkeye and Mustang returned to office, it was apparent to their subordinates they were both irritated. They went to Roy's separate office in the room and shut the door. Roy sunk in his black chair and studied her while she brought coffee and food to his desk, "Have you been sleeping at all?" he was concerned, finally looking at her long enough to notice the dark circles around her eyes.
"Have you?" she countered, trying to avert the subject from her to him, she was more concerned with his lack of sleep.
He chuckled, "I can't say that I've been sleeping much," he leaned back in the chair, then slapped his hand over his face and groaned.
Her attention was removed from her lunch, "Sir?"
"Captain, tell me why again I'm doing this?" he gazed at her with his anguish carved face. It's been a reoccurring question since they moved to Ishval months ago, where he is constantly doubting his ability to repair the culture he had helped almost destroy.
She gave him a sad smile, and stared at his fists, which were squeezed together on the desk, slightly trembling, "Because it's the right thing to do. We took the lives away from all those people against their will. What we do here may not be enough, but it's the least we can do," he stopped trembling and he released his fists, he looked up her, a ghost of smile on his face.
His un-gloved hand fingered the tips of her loose golden tresses, Riza quirked and eyebrow, "You're not wearing you hair clip…" he smirked
The image of her destroyed, slobbered hair clip appeared in her mind and she chucked, "Yes, it seems I have to teach Hayate the difference between my things and his toys again"
"I can't blame him for wanting your hair down, Captain, not that I don't like the hair clip, but this is a nice change" he grinned, now running his hand through her blonde hair. She closed her eyes as his hand combed through her hair. Surely they got closer after the events of the Promise day, but seldom did they ever let themselves engage in situations like this.
Riza pulled away, "Sir, we should probably eat, the meeting will start shortly," she stammered, though she wasn't sure why, it wasn't the first time they've had moments like this.
"Ah, you're right. I'm sorry, Captain…"
The meeting resumed an hour and a half later. Everyone met back in the conference room. Roy hoped they could come to an agreement, so he could go home or get back to work that didn't involve them, at least.
Plans to devise a strategy to lure the radicals from hiding only ended up in disagreement. Dawson was being much more argumentative towards Roy about the situation than anyone else. It was evident that the man really hated Mustang. He was much older than Hakuro, and thought Roy was too young and naive for his position.
After hours of squabbling the group came to a silence, everyone pondering a way to assess the situation. Roy turned to Riza who was still standing in her place behind him. Knowing her for as long as he did, he had never seen her this fatigued, maybe during the war, but he didn't think he'd see her in this state again, he frowned; she definitely needed rest. "Captain, have Havoc relieve you from your position and go home for the night."
Riza was a little angry; she didn't want to go home, especially after seeing the way the generals spoke to Roy condescendingly, but, She didn't argue, it would have looked bad in front of her superiors if she objected to anything her direct superior ordered. She nodded and saluted him and the other men before leaving.
Ivers smirked, inappropriately eying her as she walked passed him. Once she was out of sight old General spoke, "Now, I see why you keep her around, General Mustang. I wouldn't mind having her as my Captain."
The urge to punch a man never felt stronger than it did at that moment, of course she was pretty, but did he really stop her short of her other remarkable abilities. "Captain Hawkeye is a very capable soldier, sir"
The older man grunted, "I never said she wasn't, General."
Riza trod along the sandy trail to the barracks, her mind kept trailing back to Roy. She opened the door to a whimpering Hayate, she knelt down to pat his head, "I'm sorry. Work went on longer than I expected." She took the dog out for a walk before returning to her third floor apartment.
She slipped out of her jacket and kicked her boots off before making some hot tea. Another downside of the transfer was, unlike Central, there was really nothing to do in Ishval, except read or occasionally visit the bars. She absent mindlessly traced the lip of her ceramic mug before gulping down the rest of liquid.
Just as she was walking to her bedroom, she heard a thunderous explosion and the ground began to shake, Hayate's bark warned her something was terribly wrong. Riza sprinted towards her window to see what the commotion was, the setting sun was almost hidden by thick black smoke. Wails and shrieks echoed throughout the building from other soldiers who lived in the same facility. She sprinted towards the door, but in and instant the floor beneath her crumpled, the roof coming down with it.
The vibration of the explosion went throughout the large base. Everyone in the meeting grabbed tightly to the large table. Once the rumbling stopped, the soldiers looked at each other with wide questioning eyes. No words seemed to form in anyone's mouth. They were in complete shock and were a bit frightened, when they heard screams throughout the base that were audible in the room.
"What was that?" Major General Ivers cried out
"It sounded like an explosion" one Lieutenant blurted out nervously
Fuery and Breda ran into the large conference room, "Major General Mustang!" the dark haired, bespectacled soldier frantically called out, trying to catch his breath from running across the large building "There was a large blast in the South sector, two buildings collapsed and the other three surrounding buildings sustained major damage!" everyone in the room gasped. The South sector contained living facilities for soldiers, as well as, accommodations for visiting soldiers.
"Our families are there!" some visiting soldiers cried out in unison. Many of the visiting military personnel had brought their families with them on their trip to Ishval.
"Lieutenant Breda, get information from any witnesses and have Lieutenant Catalina send rescue workers to the scene. There may be people in serious need of aid." The pudgy red-head saluted and ran out, Mustang looked at the younger dark-haired soldier, "Fuery, I'll need you to contact Central Headquarters, inform Fuhrer Grumman!"
Hakuro stood up and slammed his fists on the table, and heatedly glared at Fuery "Damn it! What's the situation over there, soldier? My wife and children are at the quarters!"
Fuery panicked under his frustrated superior's gaze, as well as the other soldiers who were also worried about their family, "The soldier accomodatons were heavily damaged, Sir, but it appears that only barrack one and two collapsed"
Roy's eyes widened at the realization, Riza lived in building one, "T-The Captain!" He stuttered and eyed the door; he panicked when he remembered he sent her home an hour ago. "Major Miles, take control of the situation here!" he commanded to his underling. He felt the feeling of his heart dropping to the pit of his stomach. Roy scampered towards the door, Lieutenant Charlie Moreau, a supporter of Mustang who fought under his command in the Ishvalan war, grabbed his arm, "Sir, it's too dangerous for you to go out there right now!"
"Get the fuck off me!" he ripped his arm out of his subordinate's grasp glaring daggers at the man and he raced out of the room.
Dawson huffed, "Tch. And that man is in command here? Ridiculous." He scoffed, "Risking his own life for one damn soldier!" he criticized
Scar finally spoke, after being extremely quiet for the entire meeting, "He'll always go out of his way to protect any of his subordinates, especially that woman" he declared, as much as he didn't agree with their actions in the past, he admired Mustang's loyalty to his subordinates.
Unfortunately, criticism of Roy's flee to the scene began, perhaps out of hatred but also panic and worry over the safety of their own loved ones.
Major Miles took control of the situation, "Enough! A possible act of terrorism just occurred, this is not the situation turn against your comrade!"
A/N: Lieutenant Charlie Moreau is an actual character in FMA, he's the guy with the lightning bolts in his hair, the only thing I made up about him was his rank and lest name, but his name is Charlie!
*By the number of wrinkles formed under his eyes, she could count the days he hadn't slept.* I didn't mean that literally, I hope that was clear!
I'm not sure if I will continue with this. I was more leaning towards letting the reader interpret what happens. Review and let me know if I should or shouldn't.
I do not own FMA.
I made some minor revisions.