Disclaimer: I don't own FMA or it's characters and all that jazz.
Author's Note: A gift for feriowind. Enjoy your domestic!Ed darling!
It started with the brownies. In fact, if not for the brownies, he probably would have gone years and been none the wiser. They’d been hidden under ice cream, Ed’s version of celebrating moving in, apparently. Roy had brought dinner home with him, so that hadn’t given him cause to wonder, and when he’d mentioned how good the brownies were, Ed mumbled something about a bakery. The kitchen, however, smelled faintly of chocolate.
The next day was Saturday, and Roy figured he probably ought to use the day off to do laundry. Roy made his way to the closet to fish out the hamper, but it was empty. That was a little strange, and Roy wasn’t entirely sure he wanted to know how it had gotten done, but his uniforms were hanging pristinely in the closet, perfectly pressed and even on their hangers, so he decided it was better not to complain.
Monday, Roy came home to spaghetti. It didn’t taste like takeout, but he never did get a straight answer about where it’d come from. After sopping up the last of the sauce with garlic bread, Ed had wandered off to the living room to read, and Roy took the opportunity to have a look around.
The kitchen looked utterly untouched. The sink was devoid of dishes, and nothing cluttered the counters. It struck Roy as a little odd, because even their dinner dishes had been washed with the excuse that otherwise the two plates would be a pain to wash in the morning. He put it from his mind with a shrug, figuring that how dinner had come about probably wasn’t his problem.
Tuesday was chicken and potato salad that Ed claimed to have picked up at the grocery store. That didn’t explain why the leftovers were in unlabeled bowls that one would put leftovers in instead of their original cartons, but there wasn’t much point in arguing with a tight lipped Edward. He just shrugged, washed the few dinner dishes that there were again, and headed for the living room.
“Did you clean in here?” Roy asked, finally, looking around the room where Ed was perched in what looked like a rather uncomfortable position on the couch. Golden eyes met his from an upside down face that leaned over the arm of the couch, ponytail whisking particularly shiny wooden floor boards.
“I straightened up a little,” Ed responded noncommittally.
“Thanks. It looks nice.”
“I didn’t really do much of anything,” Ed insisted before burying his nose back in his book. Roy wondered vaguely how Ed was reading upside down, or why he’d even want to, but to each their own.
Roy woke up Wednesday to open curtains. That in itself was weird because he was always too lazy to open them. The only thing that happened in this room besides sleep was sex, and neither activity required light to engage in.
What was stranger than the curtains being tugged open, was the fact that Ed, and it had to have been Ed, had taken the time to tie back the curtains with ties that he’d never actually seen before. They were the same color as the curtains, and the pattern on the strips of fabric actually looked very nice with the simple blue curtains. Closer inspection revealed what looked like very careful hand stitching, and Roy wrote it off as ridiculous. Surely, Ed wasn’t spending his time not at the lab sewing. Roy shook his head, writing off the idea as a figment of his still sleep addled imagination.
By the time he got out of the shower, the whole house smelled of coffee. Roy followed the scent to the kitchen and did his best not to quirk a smile. Ed still looked very tired, but the curtains here, too, were thrown open, and there was a plate on the table with french toast, a mug of coffee beside it. Ed leaned against the counter, hair drooping messily in his face and down his shoulders, nursing a cup of his own, clad only in a loose pair of pajama pants that clung to his hipbones and drooped along the front of his waist.
“What?” he asked irritably, catching the smile Roy hadn’t meant to give.
“You made me breakfast?”
“It’s just french toast. What’s the big deal?” Ed muttered, mostly sleepily ignoring Roy after that. He did do the dishes afterwards, though, scooping up the empty coffee pot and mug, and syrup covered plate the moment Roy was through, “because syrup is a pain in the ass if you let it sit.”
Roy came home to some sort of cheesy rice casserole that didn’t seem to have a name, but tasted wonderful. Ed’s only explanation was having thrown some things together, and it really wasn’t anything special, so he could stop making a big deal about it any time now.
The strange goings on about the house spawned a few theories. It was possible, Roy supposed, that Ed had somehow goaded his brother into helping him clean and make meals. If that was the case, Roy wondered if it was his place to give his lover an earful. The other possibility he entertained was that Ed had secretly hired some help, but that didn’t really seem to fit either. In any case, he figured he’d sort it out eventually.
Thursday morning found Ed with a broom in hand. He almost looked guilty, paused midstride in his sweeping to regard Roy with an odd sort of expression.
“I spilled some sugar when I was making myself a cup of coffee,” he said, as if that explained why he was sweeping the living room.
Roy left to shower with a shake of his head, and when had getting up in the morning become such an adventure, anyway?
Roy returned to the kitchen, far too bright for this early in the morning, with those damnable open curtains. Bacon and eggs sat in his seat, and somehow, it wasn’t quite as surprising as the french toast had been.
That day, Roy decided that one way or another, at least one of his theories was going to be laid to rest. Half an hour had Al standing in his office, gray eyes bright and inquisitive.
“You asked to see me?”
“Yes,” Roy began, realizing only then he wasn’t entirely sure how to approach this. Somehow, “have you been cooking and cleaning at my house?” just sounded silly.
“Is something wrong?” Al asked anxiously.
“No…no nothing’s wrong. I was just wondering… well… You know what? Nevermind.”
“Umm, okay sir,” Al scratched his head nervously, and Roy thought distantly that Ed would be proud because Al could do that now, and feel it.
“Can I go? I’m supposed to be meeting Ed at the labs.”
“Oh, before you go,” Roy feigned nonchalance, “Has Ed been acting…strangely lately?”
“You do know that you’re talking about my brother, right?”
Roy couldn’t stop the grin that crossed his lips at that. “More strange than usual, then.”
“No… not really. Why?”
“It’s just that every time I come home… the house is…” Roy debated words, never getting the chance to settle before Al was talking.
“Well, yes, actually.”
Al was laughing. Al was laughing quite a bit, actually.
“What’s so funny?
“You’ve known brother for a long time,” Al said, and Roy wondered what it was with those two and their half explanations.
“And didn’t you ever notice how even when he came straight from a mission, his hair was always braided… like… neatly?”
Now that he thought about it, Ed’s excuse for being late was often that he’d needed to get cleaned up, or at least, that had been Roy’s assumption because he often showed up still shower damp. At the very least, he seemed to always find time to alchemize the dust from his clothes, only ignoring it when he was particularly down or just plain exhausted.
“Why does he do that?” Roy was honestly perplexed, and though it wasn’t usually his method to come out and ask, Al was good for this sort of thing.
“I don’t know. He just does. The only messes he tolerates are ones that involve books or notes.”
“At least you know you don’t have to hire a housekeeper,” Al grinned.
“There is that.”
“He’s a good cook, too. The first thing he did after we’d recuperated from… from him bringing me back, was he made me dinner.” Al was beaming happily, and Roy couldn’t help but smile with him.
“Yeah. Ed’s very protective of the people he cares about, I guess. I think he does things like that because it’s his way of taking care of who he loves.”
Roy was silent for a while, thinking about what Al had said, about all the things he’d noticed that just made far more sense now.
“Does he sew?” Roy asked as Al turned on his heel to leave.
“He used to on the train if he got really bored.” Al grinned mischievously. “Also, he makes the best brownies ever, even if he does eat them wrong.”
“He eats them wrong?”
“Everyone knows that brownies just aren’t right without milk.”
Thursday night and Roy came home to find Edward dozing on the couch. He was wearing a button down shirt a few sizes too big, faded gray and covered with what looked like paint stains. Still in his fingers was one of Roy’s shirts, a threaded needle stuck in the sleeve, probably so as not to be lost amongst the couch cushions.
Roy leaned over, pressing a kiss to Ed’s temple as he plucked the fabric from sleeping fingers. Ed barely stirred, and Roy decided he wouldn’t mention tomorrow how cute Ed looked like this.
Friday, Roy decided that all this pretending he didn’t notice what Ed was up to was absolutely ridiculous. Happily, being Friday, he could leave a little early, and most likely no one would even notice.
It was rather endearing actually, the way that Ed had managed in a week to turn his house into their home. He supposed years of picking up the slack left by their lack of parents had made Ed a little more nurturing than he might have been otherwise, even if only Al ever got to see it. Well, now him and Al apparently. Ed wasn’t good with words, was rarely vocal about his affections, but he did seem very good at least at showing that he cared… even if he didn’t like to admit it.
Two hours before he’d be expected, Roy walked in the door. He swore he could hear the gasp from the living room, and fought the urge to smirk at it.
When he finally reached said room, there was Ed, hair spun up and out of his face in some sort of twist that reminded Roy eerily of Hawkeye. The house smelled of… something good, and Ed was tugging at the apron he was wearing like it had suddenly grown teeth. There was a pile of what looked to be clean laundry sitting on the couch, some of it folded, and it would seem that Ed was good at multitasking.
“I…” Ed started, blushing very nearly crimson that spread across his face and down his neck.
“I can explain…”
“You really don’t need to,” Roy said softly.
“It’s just that, well…” Ed shifted his weight from foot to foot.
“I get it, I think,” Roy soothed.
“You do?” Ed blinked, looking rather unsure himself.
“You know, I’ve never had anyone care that much before,” Roy admitted, “It’s… pleasant.”
“I’m not a girl,” Ed insisted, relaxing enough to pad back into the kitchen and check on whatever was in the oven, apparently turkey.
“I know. You’re just… a little bit domestic.”
“I’m not a girl,” Ed repeated, like he was trying to convince himself that it was okay to cook and clean and not secretly own a different set of equipment.
“I know, Edward. I’m well aware.”
Finally, Ed seemed to accept it.
“If you start bringing me flowers, don’t think I won’t kick your ass.”
“I wouldn’t dream of it,” Roy laughed.
“Good. Dinner will be done in a while,” Ed said tersely.
Once again, even over the smell of turkey, was chocolate. Not for the first time that week, Roy found himself discovering that he was incredibly lucky.