Rachel (inugrlrayn) wrote,


Title: Pretend
Author: inugrlrayn
Series: first anime
Word Count:284
Rating: G
Characters: Ed
Summary: Ed on a train. Won 2nd place for Promp 51 "pretend".
Warnings: spoiler for the end of the anime, angst

People always looked the same on trains. Across the aisle from him, a mother rocked her baby to the steady rumble of wheels over metal tracks. The man in front of her caught his attention for just a moment, his dark hair and pale skin a shadow of something once familiar.

The low drone of conversation hovered all around him, but he could not bring himself to truly listen. If he focused on the sound of people speaking, maybe he could still pretend. If he didn’t listen too hard, he would never have to acknowledge they were speaking a language he didn’t recognize, that for all their familiarity, any commonality ended with basic humanity. He didn’t belong here, was no more than a sullen shadow.

It was a beautiful day. The sun shone in the windows on his side of the train and the scenery flew by in a blur of lush greens and blues. It was the kind of day where he would have happily challenged Al to a game of cards, but the seat across from his was conspicuously empty. Ed swallowed and tried not to think too hard, forcing himself to believe he’d sacrificed enough to reach their goals.

The train seemed to rumble on endlessly, and the tracks stretched out into a familiar sort of forever. If Ed closed his eyes, he could pretend Al was just quiet, whole and healthy and asleep in the seat across from him. If he didn’t listen too hard, he could pretend the words that buzzed in his ears were something familiar. If he just relaxed, hovering inches away from slumber, he could pretend that the train he was on was taking him home.

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