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Title: What Ed Does in Bed
Characters: Roy/Ed
Word Count: 1032
Rating: PG-13
Summary: The toughest thing about starting sleeping with someone new is working out how to sleep with them.
Notes: Written and drawn for a_big_apple's birthday. Happy birthday, Apple, apologies for the lateness and hope you had a delightful day. ♥




That first morning, Roy woke up to a vague consciousness that something was different. Then he rolled over and nearly winded himself on a metal arm.

The first week of his non-relationship with Ed brought about as much property damage as Roy might have expected, had he actually been thinking about what he was doing. There was a ripped shower curtain, torn sheets, several items of clothing that would never be the same again. There was even, bogglingly, a hollow cast-iron strut from Roy's headboard, bent out of shape by Ed's right hand when he'd grabbed it in a particularly excited moment. The automail got the blame for most of these incidents: automail and mutual enthusiasm.

It was all enough to make Roy nervous about actually spending a night unconscious next to the man; but he needn't have worried. As it turned out, the real problem with sharing a bed with Ed was the exact opposite: he didn't move. He really didn't move. He would pass out on his back, limbs splayed and taking up most of the bed, and then become immovable. Poking him didn't have any effect; two automail limbs made him too heavy to roll. Shaking him awake led Ed to turn onto his stomach, in the exact same pose, taking up the exact same amount of room. Roy would have to arrange himself around the awkwardly-shaped space Ed left. In the end, despite the boundaries they'd set themselves - no strings, no romance, no serious stuff - Roy would find usually himself invading Ed's space and using him as a pillow.

It wasn't so bad. There was something comforting about holding another person like this, skin to skin, as you fell asleep. Even when they were snoring in your ear.

After two weeks, it seemed they hadn't yet killed each other or called a halt to proceeding, and Roy was still finding three-quarters of his bed annexed at night. He decided to bring the matter up for debate.

"You splay yourself out like a starfish," he muttered into Ed's ear at 1am. He knew it was 1am because he'd been checking out the phosphorescent hands of his alarm clock for the past hour as it painfully crept forward, and he got no closer to sleep.

Ed replied with a loud snore. Roy did the mature thing: he pinched Ed's nose shut. A couple of interesting noises later, Ed was awake and scowling. Roy repeated his observation about the starfish.

"I'm asleep," said Ed. "I'm not having this conversation with you now. Because I'm totally asleep."

"That's a paradoxical statement," said Roy, rubbing his face with a hand.

"No, it's just a strategic lie. But I was asleep. I will be asleep. Might as well split the difference and say I'm asleep now."

"Why are we arguing semantics at 1am?"

"Why did you wake me up at 1am?"

"Because you splay yourself out like a starfish when you're asleep, limbs everywhere, and I get to use about a quarter of my own bed."

"Well, you hug on me in your sleep like a limpet."

"Now, that is a lie. I do not."

"You do it when you're asleep. And then you're impossible to move, it's like you're attached with suction or something. Limpet."

"Why are we comparing each other to marine life at 1am?"

Ed snorted. Roy chuckled. Their laughs merged, and faded out, and they shifted towards each other.

It took at least forty minutes of tossing, turning and colliding limbs before they found a position they could both manage to sleep in. When they finally got there, Roy did his best to make a mental note of what it was.

***


Three weeks into the affair, Roy woke in the night to find himself pinned down by the shoulders and snapping barehanded, reflexively.

He breathed hard and blinked. From the streetlights sneaking marginally between the curtains, he made out big, round eyes, and the compact outline of Ed's torso.

"Roy?" Ed's voice was an oddly uncertain little sound.

"Ed." Roy dropped his hand. "What's going on?"

Ed flopped off of Roy and put a hand into his hair. "Shit, I'm sorry. Did I hurt you? Are you okay?"

"Yes," said Roy, slowly, still not quite processing this situation. "Are you?"

"Mm. I think I was asleep back there."

Roy blinked. "So. We - attacked each other in our sleep?"

"Had a bad dream. Sometimes" - Ed huffed out a breath - "I just wake up really sudden, I get confused. It hasn't happened in a long while." Roy reached out, and his fingertips found Ed's right shoulder. He slid them up past metal and scar tissue to where Ed could feel them. There was a fruitful moment of silence. Then Ed said, "You snap in your sleep?"

"Apparently." Roy was himself slowly recalling the unpleasant scraps of a nightmare. He sighed, and drew closer to Ed. Ed met him halfway, and Roy planted his nose into Ed's neck, his cheek on Ed's warm shoulder. "Perhaps we'll kill each other in our sleep one night," he muttered.

He felt Ed's chest shake in a silent chuckle, then, momentarily, lips brushing his forehead. Roy mentally chalked up yet another incident where they'd crossed the lines they had drawn for themselves, and started acting like two people who loved one other.

It was too late at night. The sick feeling the bad dream had left rolling in his gut was fading, pushed away by the warmth of Ed's skin, the rise and fall of his chest and his soft huffs of breath.

They rearranged themselves, to the position they'd found a few nights ago. Ed splayed out on his back, Roy rested his cheek on Ed's chest just below the collarbone and hooked a leg between Ed's. Ed's automail toes twitched and curled against his calf.

The fit was perfect: both comforting and delicious. Roy felt as if he'd solved a puzzle, or assembled something without the instruction booklet. Slotted together like this, their bodies made sense; he couldn't help but fall towards sleep. As for the feeling in his chest - expansive and tender, as if the two of them were somehow breathing from the same lungs - it could wait until morning.

Comments

( 45 comments — Leave a comment )
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sky_dark
May. 20th, 2011 05:11 pm (UTC)
;_; Aw, it's so sweet, acting like two people who love each other <33333 and the drawing is wonderful <3 I love Ed's little smile <33333
bob_fish
May. 20th, 2011 10:17 pm (UTC)
Denial is a wonderful thing ♥

Thank you! The drawing put itself together quite quickly this morning, days off are fun. Ed's little smile likely comes of having had all three of his favourite ingredients for a good evening (you know what they are) in one night.
(no subject) - hikaru_9 - May. 22nd, 2011 09:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
enemytosleep
May. 20th, 2011 06:17 pm (UTC)
SAP.

Also, I had no idea what limpet is. I know what slipper snails are, which I guess they are a type of limpet? Too much nerding at 1am, boys.
bob_fish
May. 20th, 2011 10:08 pm (UTC)
Pfft. I have your secretly-sappy number.

Limpet. Don't tell me it's a Britishism?
(no subject) - enemytosleep - May. 20th, 2011 10:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bob_fish - May. 20th, 2011 10:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - enemytosleep - May. 20th, 2011 11:19 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bob_fish - May. 21st, 2011 08:41 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - enemytosleep - May. 21st, 2011 02:22 pm (UTC) - Expand
azure15
May. 20th, 2011 10:37 pm (UTC)
Oh that's so fricking sweet! Who knew these two could do that? Awesome work and adorable picture!

bob_fish
May. 20th, 2011 10:41 pm (UTC)
I find them sweet quite a lot of the time ... they're both saps at heart! Thanks very much!
evilchuckles
May. 20th, 2011 10:57 pm (UTC)
*happy sigh* How utterly wonderful. And the picture! Love Ed's smug expression!
bob_fish
May. 21st, 2011 08:42 am (UTC)
I love Ed's smug expression too, it was fun to draw. Thanks!
sonjajade
May. 20th, 2011 11:15 pm (UTC)
Both of these were wonderful. Your art is truly noteworthy, I'm envious of your skills.
bob_fish
May. 21st, 2011 08:44 am (UTC)
Thanks! Glad you enjoyed. It's all down to the magic drawing tablet of joy, enemytosleep introduced me to it and it's been amazingly helpful in improving my work.

(no subject) - sonjajade - May. 21st, 2011 01:16 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bob_fish - May. 21st, 2011 03:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
vwl
May. 20th, 2011 11:16 pm (UTC)
You know, I was initially a Roy/Ed fan, way back a long, long time ago.....

And recently, that love has been coming back. :D I completely forgot about 5/20 day, though. Which is disappointing. But, oh well. I would feel guilty working on anything other than the fma gift exchange fic I signed up for but can't get bunnied for. (Any interest in pelting me with bunnies? :D)

Anyway, my favorite part of this entire thing is the self-satisfied grin on Ed's face in the picture. XD (Me and everyone else, right?)
bob_fish
May. 21st, 2011 08:46 am (UTC)
Teh love is coming back? *sparkly eyes*

You should write some (more) Roy/Ed, though! In order to facilitate this, I'm happy to pelt you with bunnies for whatever you signed up for. Drop me an email/PM with the prompt and where you need bunnying up for it?

I love a smug Ed. XD
(no subject) - vwl - May. 21st, 2011 02:28 pm (UTC) - Expand
pandoraculpa
May. 21st, 2011 02:17 am (UTC)
This is beautiful! <3 The story, the picture... every bit of it.

I love how you wrote Roy and Ed settling in to one another, learning how to share space. Because my god, that's one of the hard things to do, isn't it? And with these two... well, they never make things easy in the first place, do they? The mutual bad dreams was a nice touch as well; both these boys have their demons, of course they're going to rise to the surface sometimes.

But the way they finally learned to adjust, found that good position together... that's just adorable. And the pic- oh lord, the picture! You know, one day I'm gonna have to get you to explain how you do such nice shading and coloring. I'm never satisfied with mine.

Lovely work, as always. Apple is a lucky gal! :)
bob_fish
May. 21st, 2011 08:53 am (UTC)
Learning to share space is difficult for sure! I've wanted for a while to deal with them both getting the occasional rotten nightmare without it turning into an angst-fest. I'm glad to hear this struck the right note for you.

I do all my shading and colouring on Photoshop, and tend to use a particular brush. Do you colour in Photoshop ever? If so, I can spam you with my method and send you the brush in question. Basically, I use a textured brush that (sort of) mimics watercolour work because my stuff never seems to look as good with smooth colour. I do each colour in a separate layer under the lineart, and when I've added in the colour I erase all the scribbly bits that have fallen outside the lineart.
a_big_apple
May. 21st, 2011 04:12 am (UTC)
Awwwwwwww! So funny and sweet and lovely!! And the art! I want to snuggle right in there with them, though that would mean having to find a new good position... XD Thank you, what a fantastic present! You always rock my socks!
bob_fish
May. 21st, 2011 08:54 am (UTC)
Thanks, I'm really glad you like it! I know all about your snuggling kink, that was what inspired this (that, and the need to cut the sap with comedy bickering). XD
(no subject) - a_big_apple - May. 21st, 2011 12:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
picca
May. 21st, 2011 07:02 am (UTC)
Aww, so sweet. This made my morning, maybe I can start cleaning my apartment now. It's adorable to see them acting like this. <3
bob_fish
May. 21st, 2011 08:42 am (UTC)
Don't remind me, I need to clean my own apartment, parents are visiting!

Thanks, glad you enjoyed!
stultiloquentia
May. 21st, 2011 04:28 pm (UTC)
D'awwww. They're so damn real.
bob_fish
Jun. 12th, 2011 09:26 am (UTC)
Thanks! (late reply is late) They're crabby but they're sappy.
too_beauty
May. 21st, 2011 07:30 pm (UTC)
lovely! both the fic and the drawing!
bob_fish
May. 22nd, 2011 07:34 pm (UTC)
Thank you! This was fun to write and draw.
seatbeltdrivein
May. 22nd, 2011 01:49 pm (UTC)
...I read this and somehow never commented on it? 0_o I blame the brainfunk I've been going through the last few days!

I love the idea of Roy and Ed having to adjust to one another on a 24/7 basis. You just *know* there would problems, little stupid ones that no one normally thinks about until they're happening. Like imagine, if you will, if neither of them considered that they both drain coffee like they're being fed it intravenously. Either of them waking up to an empty can could spell destruction. This was adorable. <3
bob_fish
May. 22nd, 2011 02:06 pm (UTC)
I love the stupid little problems, and the opportunities for domestic bickering fic they present. I've been thinking about this recently - although I know some people see Roy/Ed as a super-romantic, idealised pair, flames of passion, etc. I actually find them very identifiable, at least the way I picture them. Adoring one's spouse doesn't mean you don't want to brain them for their irritating habits, or get crabby over the compromises of sharing space/your life with someone.

I want to write the fic where they both run out of coffee now. I think we both project our coffee addictions onto the characters, if I run out of coffee first thing it's an emergency. XD I'm trying to imagine them into a situation where new coffee couldn't be obtained straight away (my headcanon Roy lives in town, in an apartment right off a major boulevard). Either they both have early meetings where there will be only crappy, weak, ineffective coffee so this is the ONLY CHANCE to fuel up in time - or they're vacationing somewhere more remote and did not factor in the scale of their coffee consumption.
(no subject) - seatbeltdrivein - May. 22nd, 2011 02:12 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - bob_fish - May. 22nd, 2011 02:40 pm (UTC) - Expand
brinylon
May. 22nd, 2011 06:32 pm (UTC)
Cute stuff! I think any relationship these guys would have would be about a lot of wrestling who gets to be the boss of this and that.
bob_fish
May. 22nd, 2011 07:27 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I quite agree - apart from stuff like the washing up, which they both think they know how to do best yet strive to avoid at all costs. XD
hikaru_9
May. 22nd, 2011 09:32 pm (UTC)
Aw, I love the little illustration with it <3
bob_fish
May. 22nd, 2011 10:03 pm (UTC)
Thanks! :D
eve_n_furter
May. 24th, 2011 04:52 pm (UTC)
Ooh! I love their nightly negotiations here and Roy's thoughts about them. Much said in few words. <3
bob_fish
May. 24th, 2011 04:58 pm (UTC)
Thanks! Glad you enjoyed.
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