Riza slowly walked down the stairs from the clinic, wondering what came next. She hadn’t exactly needed the rabbit test to confirm what she already knew. She had felt different in so many little ways. At least she wasn’t sick yet. Being the Fuhrer’s adjutant meant she worked in the office so she wouldn’t have to take a leave of absence immediately. Of course, she spent a lot coordinating things between Fuhrer Grumman and General Mustang while they rebuilt Ishval.
That in mind, she headed to Roy’s office first. She could hear Roy talking loudly. Hearing Edward’s voice, Riza sighed. The young man might not be a State Alchemist any longer but he was still traveling, researching, and he and Roy often collaborated on projects. However, they didn’t know how to do it quietly.
Riza listened for a moment, realizing they weren’t talking alchemy, rebuilding or even who was better at doing what. Today’s nonsense was about who had been sexier in the movie Murder Stalks Midnight, Miss Cinnamon Seely or Miss Beverly Burton. Roy and she had seen the movie over the weekend and apparently Edward had taken Winry. Riza paused in the doorway, trying to decide whether or not to interrupt or just leave them to their heated debate of which bodily attribute was more alluring. All she did know was this was definitely not the time to tell Roy about the baby.
“Oh, Riza, didn’t see you there,” Roy smiled, totally unashamed to have been caught salivating over the thighs of some twenty-year old actress. “That’s a pensive expression.”
“She’s probably coming to tell you she came to her senses and she’s running away to Creata.” Edward snorted.
Riza shook her head. Some things never changed. “I was just wondering if you could tear yourself away from your riveting discussion of body parts to finish up the paperwork the Fuhrer is waiting on.”
Roy pulled a fat folder off his desk and handed it to her. “Already done.”
“Then I’ll leave you to debate about your fantasy women,” she said and this time he did blush, though only just a hint.
“I will but just know, my reality is better than the fantasy,” Roy said and Edward rolled his eyes.
Riza fought to keep her face neutral even though she thought it was very sweet. “I’ll keep that in mind,” she said before heading back out the door. There would be better times to tell him, like tonight, after all.
“Thanks for meeting me,” Riza said to her lunch companion, looking away as she put a hand on Hayate’s head. He sat next to the outdoor café’s table leg.
“You sounded so mysterious over the phone. You’ve got me curious! How could I not come?” Rebecca sipped her tea. “What’s up?”
“I have big news that I have to tell Roy and I have no idea how to do it.” Riza sighed. “Why this is so hard is a complete mystery.”
Rebecca’s eyes lit up like lightning. “You’re pregnant!”
Riza blushed even though she wasn’t sure why. Rebecca didn’t wait for confirmation. She jumped up, nearly knocking over the wrought iron table as she forgot Riza wasn’t really a hugger. Rebecca embraced Riza so hard, her breath whooshed out. “Rebecca!”
“Sorry, sorry.” Rebecca patted Riza’s back then sat back down. Hayate huffed and resituated himself. “That’s great. Roy doesn’t know?”
“I just found out for sure yesterday but I can’t seem to tell him. I have no idea why. I tried at the office but he was busy being inane with Edward.” Both women rolled their eyes. “Last night, I tried several times but just couldn’t.”
“Well, you have to eventually. He’s going to notice sooner or later.” Rebecca grinned. “How are you feeling, though?”
“Good, a little tired. I’m having trouble concentrating,” Riza admitted. She was glad to have avoided morning sickness so far but she didn’t want to push her luck by bragging about it.
“From the way you run his office, he might notice that first.”
“I am mostly in Grumman’s office, now. It unfortunately leaves Roy to his own devices a little too often. I just don’t know how he’ll take this,” Riza said, voicing one of her secret fears.
Rebecca’s lips thinned as the waitress came over. The conversation derailed while they put in their orders then she said, “Why would there be a problem? He’s your husband now. No one is going to say anything.”
“It’s not that.” Riza shook her head. “Roy lost his parents to violence when he was very young. His childhood was…colorful to say the least. However, he doesn’t have a great amount of confidence in his abilities when it comes to kids. I keep telling him, he won’t be like my father but he does bear the same secret and it weighs on him.”
“And I’m sure the things that happened in the war didn’t help.” Rebecca scowled. “Still, it’s different now and it’s his kid. He’ll adjust.”
“I know.” Riza just wished she did know for sure. “I know he’ll be a good father. I just have to make him see that.”
“I don’t think it’ll be that big of a problem. Just tell him and if he cries, take pictures.” Rebecca smirked.
Riza sighed. “I will not. He’s not going to cry.”
“Bet he does.”
Ignoring her, Riza reached down to scratch Hayate’s ears. She really hoped Roy would be happy about all of this.
“It’s a nasty night,” Roy said, stretched out on the couch. Looking out the window, he was concentrating half on his cup of tea and half on the storm outside. His foot tapped out the beat his phonograph’s record spewed forth, seemingly unaware that Hayate was watching that stockinged foot with too much interest.
Riza shooed the dog away and turned the sound down a little. She nudged Roy’s hip and sat down next to him, rubbing his belly. Riza had taken a lot of time to consider all the fears she had confessed to Rebecca and realized she was being silly. Or maybe, she was the one afraid of parenthood but there was no time for that worry now. “I think I might be able to make it better.”
Roy put his cup on the table, arching his belly against her hand. It was obvious what he thought she meant, not that she was going to rule it out. “Oh?”
“I have something I have to tell you.”
Roy flopped back against the couch. “Oh.”
Her lips thinned. Did he have to look so disappointed? “Yes, I know we haven’t really talked about it much, doing a little more planning for this country than our lives but…”
He sat upright so fast he nearly careened into her. “You’re pregnant!”
Riza’s eyes widened. “How did you…I thought this would be so hard to tell you and you practically read my mind.” She touched his cheek. “Roy, are you crying?”
He sniffled, rubbing a hand over his cheek. “No,” he lied.
“I lost a bet with Rebecca,” Riza mumbled.
Roy wrapped his arms around her, pulling her back down on the couch with him. His lips sealed over hers in a breathless kiss. “I love you so much,” he whispered in her ear. “This is the best news ever.”
Tears trickled down his face and she wiped them away. “They wanted me to take pictures if you cried.” She grinned.
“No! Edward will laugh,” Roy protested weakly.
“He won’t be alone.” Riza leaned in, kissing him again. “I’m so glad you’re happy about this.”
“How could I not be?”
Riza could still envision a dozen scenarios where this all could go wrong but it didn’t matter. She had Roy and together, they could withstand anything.