Series: Brotherhood/the manga
Word Count: 499
Characters: Ling/Lan Fan, Ed/Winry, Al/Mei
Summary: Ling isn’t the only one kept on a short leash.
Warnings: cuteness, pitiful attempt at humor, very very mild innuendo.
Notes: So, I had to cut this short by quite a bit. Oh my god, that was a pain. D: But hopefully, the cuteness is still intact. XD Won third place at fma_fic_contest for prompt 84: Leash.
‘The plan’ had been easy enough to carry out, considering that Ed and Al were currently sitting across from him, sipping some of his finest tea. Al seemed to be enjoying it. Ed? Not quite so much.
“Something wrong?” Ling asked.
Ed shook his head. “Just more of a coffee man, myself.”
“This is better for you,” Ling replied.
Ed rolled his eyes. “You sound like my wife.”
Ling chucked. “Where is she, anyway?”
Ed sighed. “She spends forever fixing herself up, you know.”
Ling gave a nod of understanding before his gaze slid to Al. “And Mei?”
Al blushed fiercely. “Uhm. Well. She’s still sleeping. Long trip.”
Ed snickered, elbowing him. “Sure, Al. Blame it on the trip.”
Ling smiled, reminded of why he’d invited the brothers here in the first place (aside from the fact that he’d wanted to give them the opportunity to mooch off of him for a change): he’d missed them.
Al cleared his throat. “Where is Lan Fan?”
As if on cue, she entered the room. She was without her mask, but Ling knew that she was not without weapons hidden somewhere within the folds of the elaborate outfit she wore. She was grace and deadly beauty, all rolled into one: his protector, and undeniably more.
She bowed before addressing him: “My lord, the head of the Zheng clan is here. You promised him an early-morning audience.”
He’d forgotten. Offering her a sweet smile, he tried to bargain: “Can’t it wait until tomorrow?”
She gave him a stern look.
He tried again: “This afternoon?”
It was a no-go. “You promised.”
“Fifteen minutes,” she interrupted in a whisper. The look in her eyes told him that if he did not wish to occupy an empty bed tonight, he would stop arguing.
So, Ling gave in. “Fifteen minutes.”
She smiled his smile before she bowed again and exited the room, nodding to Ed and Al on her way out.
Ed burst into laughter soon after. “Wow, I never would have guessed that the Emperor of Xing would be on such a short leash.”
Behind every good man, Ling thought, and was about to issue a retort when a very pregnant Winry came waddling into the room.
“You didn’t make the bed up this morning,” she hissed, pointing an accusatory finger at Ed. “It’s your turn.”
Ed blinked. “We aren’t at home, you know. They have servants--”
“Ling has servants,” Winry clarified, her glare intensifying. “We owe him just for letting us stay here; we aren’t too good to make the bed that we sleep in.”
Apparently seeing no point in arguing further, Ed nodded and sighed. “I’ll make the bed.”
Winry then kissed him on the cheek. “Good.”
Ling shared a look with Al, and then glanced at Ed again, smirking.
“Don’t start,” Ed told him, eyeing him threateningly.
Ling raised both hands in a placating gesture. “Not a word,” he vowed.
But words weren’t really necessary in this case, were they?