He never wanted her to know it happened, and for a while, she played along.

It only occured every so often. Maybe once every few months. In the middle of the night, she'd hear a faint huffing sound from his side of the bed. Sometimes he would shake, or pull the blankets around him. She figured he was dreaming about Al, or the little girl they couldn't save, or Ishval, or the Promised Day, or Mr. Hughes, or anything. But Ed was Ed, and if he was aware that she knew about this, he'd be angry and humiliated. So she did nothing.

And so it went on. She counted five. Five times she was woken by his shudders and slight sobs. It was painful, but she wouldn't do it. She wouldn't let him know she saw him hurt.

But one night it was the worst. His body was racking, hair sticking to his neck. She herd him whimpering … when did Ed ever whimper? She could stand it no longer.

"Ed?" she said quietly, reaching out into the darkness. Her hand reached his arm, which was sticky with sweat and tense with anxiety. His head snapped back as he was awakened by her touch.

"Winry?" he said after a moment. He rolled over, his back to her, shutting her out. "Go back to sleep," he said gruffly.

"What's wrong?" she asked gently. "Ed..."

"Hm? Nothing. Go to sleep."

"You know … you don't have to be so brave all the time."


"And … and it's okay to be scared."

"I'm not scared." But his voice wavered.


He turned to her. She could barely make out the tears shining like medallions on his face.

"Oh, Ed …" She wrapped Ed – her Ed, tough Ed, brave Ed – in her arms and pressed his head next to hers.

"I'm not scared," he repeated, as if he had something to prove.

"Ed, you're such an idiot," she said to his neck.

He smiled faintly into her shoulder and let her envelope him.

She felt his hot tears on her shoulder. Edward Elric has finally surrendered his medals.