Hello to thee! I have actually uploaded something! Yay!
Anyway, I would like to take the time to say that I feel this story isn't completely mine. I was derping around DeviantART and I stumbled across a comic called 'Simple Moment' by Socij. I suddenly was inspired to write this story, and I would have never done it had I not seen such artwork. So, I give you the link to this awesome art that practically jump-started my brain ( ?q=edward+winry+comic#/d55ryg7). Check it out!
Edward Elric was no stranger to the horrors one's mind could inflict while during sleep. He, himself, had quite a few that left him stuck in confusion from reality and dreams. After all, he had seen many horrible things in his lifetime. Even after the eventful Promised Day, he still awoke in cold sweat, grasping the sheets like they were his only lifeline in a sea of despair. Even when he had returned his beloved brother to his original body, he still was haunted by the unfeeling eyes through the armor. He still dreamed of their mother, young Nina, and even delusional images if Alphonse's blood seal had been tampered with.
Edward supposed he was to be cursed by his mind, but it couldn't really matter. His brother was safe, as was the country. No homunculi, no Father, and closure on the corruption in the military. All was well. And soon, Al and himself would depart this town, traveling away once more to study different branches of alchemy. Alphonse had decided he wanted to visit Xing, studying alkahestry from Mei. Good, Edward didn't want to have to deal with that bean sprout and her deranged cat again.
Plus, the West was rougher, more dangerous. Edward would never let his little brother travel there alone. Alphonse's train left tomorrow at noon, but Edward knew he had another week before his time to leave came around. The wanderlust hadn't left them, that was for sure.
But, as Edward lay awake in his bed, for the first time in along time: Edward wasn't awoken early because of a nightmare. Usually he slept till Winry's cooking or Pinako's calls awoke him. Alphonse had the luxury of undisturbed rest, the spoiled brat. Edward usually felt drained enough to sleep through the nights, since Winry was such a slave driver. Yet, Edward couldn't fall back asleep.
With a sigh, he sat up, leaving his cocoon of a bed. If he couldn't make himself go back to sleep, he just should get some reading in. Running his now flesh fingers along his nightstand, Edward remembered that he had left his most recent read downstairs on the couch. Cracking his back, Edward stumbled through his room to the door, a yawn on his lips and a hand scratching his exposed belly.
Blinking blearily, he slipped through the door silently, avoiding the creak that was sure to wake his brother. Tip-toeing past Pinako's room, Edward braced himself to pass Winry's room. For some reason, he could not make it past her room without her waking and yelling at him for being too noisy. It wasn't his fault she had ears like the old bat. He was ready to commence his vital silent progress down the stairs when a single sound made his entire body tense.
It wasn't a normal sound he was used to hearing, and it's effect on him was like ice down the bare skin of his back. As if he was moving in slow motion, he turned on his heel, his hands already on the door into Winry's room. Holding his breath, hoping her wrath wouldn't descend upon his head, Edward opened the door slowly.
Winry's room was always tidy, unless she was backed up on automail orders. Despite her messy appearance, she was rather picky on how tidy her living quarters were.
Glancing around, allowing his eyes to adjust to the pale moonlight that peeked through the window, Edward surveyed the room. All seemed in place: the bolts in order, her closet closed, her clothing folded. When his golden gaze fell upon the bed on the far side of the room, they instantly homed on Winry's silhouette. Among the dips and waves of the sheets, he caught the tension in her body.
The hands that had given him an arm and a leg, had once saved both a mother and child, and had crafted many more limbs for those who needed them, had fists full of the covers. Her nails were digging into the soft cloth as her arms were locked stiff, as if she had been petrified. She would have seemed frozen in fear, if not for her rapid breathing that made her seem like she was going through hyperventilation.
Despite the rather warm air, she had goosebumps along her skin. Her face was contorted, a mix of a grimace and fear. Her legs writhed, twitching beneath the covers of her bed, her head tossing across her pillow. Her mouth quirked, and the sound that had drawn Edward in was emitted again.
A single, almost too quiet to hear, whimper.
But, one feature caused Edward to instantly move close to her side. Her cheeks were wet with tears: not tears of happiness. She was in a nightmare that was causing her pain. Edward wouldn't allow that.
Lowering himself to sit beside her, he raised his hand, gently touching her cheeks.
"Winry." He whispered softly. "Winry, wake up. Hey."
He tapped her cheek slightly harder, watching her anxiously. Instantly, her eyes flashed open, the black pupils small and unfocused. She opened her mouth wide, taking in a gasp as if she had been drowning and now was finally able to breath. It was all too familiar for Edward, seeing what happened to him reflected in another person. What made it worse was it was Winry now experiencing such horrors to take away her peaceful slumber.
She seemed to calm down, although stray tears still plowed down her face. But, she focused her eyes on his, blinked, then looked away to the wall; Rolling her body to face away from him. "Sorry. I didn't mean to wake you, Ed." She muttered, her voice still touched with a tremble from her ordeal.
Edward sighed, already irritated that she tried to hide her pain. "I was already awake. Now, what was that about?"
He never really means to sound so harsh, so annoyed with social interactions. He supposed he wasn't really built for comfort as his brother, Alphonse, was. But, he didn't want to leave her alone after seeing her so distraught.
She breathed for a moment, speaking softly. "It was nothing."
The way she said it practically screamed that it wasn't nothing, Edward at least knew that. "Like hell it was nothing. I've never seen you like that. Now tell me."
He expected her to flare her temper, to kick him out, to prove that it could be easily smoothed over with a heated argument: but when she shook her head, curling her back as her legs rose to her chest, Edward knew this had to be investigated.
"Why should I? You never told me about your nightmares." She whispered bitterly. Edward scowled, already fed up with her reluctance to cooperate. He grabbed her shoulder, forcing her to roll on her back as he leaned over, staring into her surprised eyes.
"My nightmares are about what Al and I did. I never wanted to involve you in a mistake I made. Now, when something is causing you this much pain, I make it my business to know! Those didn't look like tears of joy!" His voice rose in volume, still not loud enough to wake anyone else, but enough to make Winry see he was serious. Edward's golden eyes never left her sapphire ones, locking them both in a silent staring match until Winry broke it. She looked to her right, out the window beside her bed, her gaze far off.
"It...was like a vortex of anguish." She whispered, almost like a leaf brush on bare skin.
Edward remained silent, ready to absorb anything she threw at him, already feeling dread in his mind.
"You...Al...you just came home and everything carried on. But, when you told us of your adventures, you never mentioned what exactly happened to the people of Amestris on the Promised Day. You told us about that Father guy, and the battle. But, we never told you what happened to us, did we?"
The brick of shock slowly crawled down Edward's throat, weighing down his stomach with horror.
Winry was right. They had never asked about their time on the Promised Day, Al and he never bothered to ask. They all were so enveloped in Al's returned body and his returned arm. He almost didn't want to ask.
"It started like it always does, Granny and I are with the Briggs soldiers in the workshop. Everything is fine until the feeling comes over us. We all dropped to the floor like flies and it was like all the air was taken from us. We couldn't breathe."
Edward bit his lip, remembering when Father had tried to make himself and Teacher into a Philosophers stone manually. Her remembered it exactly as Winry was describing it.
"I couldn't reach Granny, and then I had no strength for myself. But, then I felt odd: like I was being pulled through pipes into a center place." She shifted, turning her head to look Edward in the eyes. "But, when I got to the center, it was a vortex of anguish and terror. I couldn't see, but I...could hear them. Babies were crying, women were screaming, men were yelling. They were all crammed up against me, pushing me everywhere. But, unlike when it happened, there was no end. I didn't wake up and I didn't get out."
She looked away again. "It's scary to think about that."
Edward took in a steady breath, already feeling guilt for not stopping Father before this happened to Winry.
"How long? How many?"
His voice didn't allow him to say more, choking him as he tried to remain calm.
"I first began having this dream the night after it happened, I couldn't sleep the day it did. I can't count how many though."
Silence weaved around them, coating them in a sense of helplessness.
"I'm sorry. You are probably irritated that you have to deal with my cry-baby self. I'll just go back to sleep." Winry muttered, ready to roll over and shut him out again when she felt arms around her, lifting her to sit up. She met Edward's eyes in shock, mouth open in mid question as Edward spoke.
"You are only human. It's normal to cry sometimes. Granted, I don't like seeing you cry, but you can always come to me if you ever have this dream again. Okay?"
He didn't give her time to answer as he pulled her against him, her head resting against his neck.
"N-Now go back to sleep. I'll be here." Edward ordered, turning his blushing face away from her.
Winry blinked, a smile slowly crawling on her face as she snuggled against him, grabbing his shirt.
"This is uncomfortable." She stated blankly before surprising him by pulling him down beside her. Ignoring his blatant squawk of protest, she snuggled close to his side, her head on his arm and her arms around his torso: already half asleep. Inhaling a full breath of his smell, she found herself too sleepy to snap at him for squirming too much, letting out a happy sigh as she promptly fell asleep.
Edward, overcoming his blushing embarrassment, glanced down his arm at the girl he knew since they were children. Rolling his eyes at her content smile, he readjusted his head on her pillow in defeat. With her monstrous grip, he wouldn't be going anywhere for the rest of the night. Convincing himself he could read tomorrow, hoping that Alphonse didn't find them this way in the morning, Edward let his eyes drift closed, savoring the sweet quiet of the house until dawn.