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The wind carried the cold weather out of the northern mountains, bringing fat flakes of snow down over Rezembool. The kids were shocked – fascinated – delighted the snow fell so thick, so fast. Pinako was glad she’d insisted the Elric boys stay at her house. She didn’t think they could’ve made their way to the Rockbell homestead with the amount of snow that had fallen during the night but didn’t bother saying it out loud; Ed would think he’d be fine and drag Al home with him, no matter how unsafe traveling in a blizzard might be.
Of course, Ed would be.
“When it stops snowing, you kids can play outside.” Pinako hooked a thumb at the window, where Al was still staring at the falling flakes. “I’m not letting you go out now.”
“Awww.” Ed scuffed his foot over the floor, his lower lip pooching out.
The static made Winry’s wispy hair stand on end. “We could play a game!” She ran out of the room and returned a few minutes later, carrying a deck of cards.
Scowling at the offer, Ed dragged himself over to the table. “Al. Al, come on,” he whined. “We’re going to play cards.”
“But I wanna play in the snow!” His nose and hands smudging the glass, his breath left a cloud of fog, too.
“No one’s playing in the snow until it stops.”
Pinako hoped she had enough tobacco to carry her through the blizzard. She had a feeling she was going to need it.
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Chapter 2: Snow Day
They've been playing in the snow all day.
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
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The kids stomped back into the house, bringing the cold with them. They had bright red noses and pink cheeks; their clothes sodden from their fun in the snow. Hair stuck to damp skin and fingers, chilled from the snow, moved slow. Pinako watched as they helped each other drag off jackets, unwind scarves, and kick away boots.
“Strip down and get in front of the fire.” She pointed toward the living area. Naked kids ran, giggling as they landed in the nest of towels and a blanket. They rolled up together to get warm, squabbling over the cover, throwing towels at each other. Pinako sighed, letting them work it out themselves, heading back to the kitchen.
If the snow didn’t melt, it’d be hard to get any deliveries, including milk. Pinako thought they’d be all right, though. The chickens would provide eggs, and there was still cheese in the pantry. There was tea and coffee, and her stock of apple cider and juice. There was a cord and a half of wood on the porch. And, there had been enough milk left over for a cup of hot chocolate and Pinako carried it in to the kids. “Here you are. You’ll have to share.”
Ed’s nose twitched. “You two drink it! It has milk!”
“Are you sure, Brother?” Al asked as Winry accepted the cup, ignoring the face Ed made.
Winry said, “More for us, then!” She sipped and offered the cup to Al.
Pinako pointed her pipe stem. “You should drink milk, Ed. You’re never going to grow if you don’t.” She pressed her hand on top of his head before he could squawk. “But I’ll make you some hot tea. This time.”
When she came back with the cup of tea, Pinako had to smile. The kids had fallen asleep, reminding her of a knot of puppies. Al’s thumb was in his mouth, his back pressed against Ed’s side. Ed’s arms and legs were outflung, even under the blanket. Winry’s head rested on Ed’s shoulder and Den had joined them, her body curled around the kids.
“Guess the tea can wait, huh?” Pinako take a sip of it, smacking her lips. The kids could sleep for now. Later on, the boys could transmute the damp out of their clothes, and Winry could hang them up. But for now, it was nice to have the quiet soak into the room.
…at least until Ed started snoring.
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Written for YuukiHikari, for her request of "itty bitty Resembool trio and one cup of hot chocolate."