Dear Mr. Mustang,

Day 5 of Royai Week: Letters
Rated: T? iunno || Words: 2928

January 10th, 1904
Dear Mr. Mustang,

        The house is quieter with you gone. It’s funny, all that time trying to keep the noise down and it’s the first thing I notice. Father barely speaks, I think he’s still furious with you -  he doesn’t show it, he was never one to vocalize his thoughts. He stays in his study, leaving his comfort zone for dinner time or at night once he’s done brooding, I suppose.

I’m not completely sure why you’ve asked me to write to you, but your face looked genuine when you asked so I won’t take it as a jest. I suppose I’ve run out of things to say. I’d like to know what the academy is like. I wish you the best in your training.

Riza H.

Riza bit on the edge of her inkpen, nervous about the words that she wanted to say without saying too much.  She sat back into her wooden chair, having half a mind to tear it into pieces. Her hand hovered over the sheet, ready to crumple into a ball, but she hesitated.

Leaning forwards, she grabbed the short edge of the letter and folded, creasing it to fit neatly within an envelope. She tucked the letter away to drop off at the postal office during her trip to town.

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from where we stand

Well, this here’s the first chapter of whatever monstrosity that my brain unleashed. There’s not gonna be a lot really happening, it’s largely a buildup/background chapter needed to reorient yourself into this AU. Happy reading!

Also on FFN.

Words: 8,519

Somewhere in the Eastern Mountains, Amestris, 1905

It was the sharp ring of the bell that signaled to the workers that the work-day had ended. Twelve hours they had stood on their feet, performing the same task over and over and over again, baking under the high heat radiating off of the large machines that they worked on. Often standing hunched over their machine, performing tedious work with hardly any feeling in their hands, fighting from breathing in the dust and stray particles in the air.

But it had been a good day. There had been no major accidents. Nothing for them to halt the production line while the machine was being repaired because someone had leaned too far over and their loose items became caught in the machine.

Riza remembered the sight of Mary-Ann Arbor being hauled out, half of her scalp ripped from her body, simply because she had leant too far over and one of her beautiful red braids had gotten caught in the machine. They had taken her home to her family, where they bandaged their wounds as well as they could and prayed desperately for her to make it against odds and survive the night. Their prayers had not been heard and young Mary-Ann was dead by morning.

Riza solemnly buttoned the many buttons on her coat before grabbing her pail that served to carry the lunch she never ate and made to leave the factory. She would be back before the sun broke over the horizon in the morning, and give another full day’s work. Only for the cycle to repeat itself over the next day, and the day after that. Only stopping for the one day of rest required by the government, only for her ten to twelve hour shifts to begin again until the next day of rest.

It was a dull existence, but it provided food for the table and a way to keep the bank off of their property.

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inb4 “BUT HE TATTOOED THE SECRETS OF FLAME ALCHEMY ON HER BACK!!11!!”, okay, I seriously don’t feel like getting in a fight or ranting right now but NOWHERE IN THE MANGA OR ANIME IS IT MENTIONED THAT HE FORCED HER ONTO TATTOOING IT, so if you feel like ranting, go on, others will probably be more than happy to reply and feed the fire.

I BELIEVE BERTHOLD HAWKEYE ONCE WAS A HEALTHY, WEALTHY, PERSON, and then something happened, and I’ll leave the rest to your headcanon.


Day 4: Forgotten

Little Riza Hawkeye quickly closes the door shut with a big gleaming smile on her face. She ran a few more steps before taking a pause and surveys the whole house. She takes a right in the living room and takes a look over while holding onto a piece of paper with anticipation. Riza didn’t usually feel like this but after all the hard work she did, she should be proud. 

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Part 11 of my young Riza comic.

Every year, Berthold builds a fire for his wife.

What if I changed the art style a bit? It’s looser but it’s also easier and faster for me to do, and IMO looks better.

Next week’s update is the last part of the 1900 chapter. I’m going to take a tiny break between 1900 and 1901 to catch up on requests and stuff.

So Feb 16th, update.

Feb 23rd, no update.

March 2nd, start of 1901.

Anyway, I just want to say thanks to everyone who follows my dumb comic. I wouldn’t have made it this far without all your support (◡‿◡✿)

momtaku  asked:

Angel, since your reading the manga I'm hoping you now the answer to this. Is it in the manga that Rizas childhood was lonely and her father was abusive or is that just a common headcanon? It's seems like every young royai fanfiction includes this. I just finished rizacupcakes fanfic and it got me wondering. I hope you day is a good one!

I think it is a common headcanon. I have no idea if anything is stated somewhere outside of the manga (like in artbooks or those sidestories like the one explaining why Riza grew out her hair) but the manga itself didn’t say anything about their relationship and Berthold’s appearance it’s quite similar to the Brotherhood version as far as I recall.

The only differences known to me:

  • Brotherhood provides us with Berthold’s first name (it wasn’t stated in the manga)
  • Berthold is lying in bed while in the manga, he’s sitting at his desk, finishing writing something
  • Of course, there’s more detailed dialogue in Brotherhood about why Roy wants to learn flame alchemy because of the political situation.
  • In the manga, while dying, Berthold first tells Roy that Riza knows the secrets, then tells him to take care of Riza, followed by “please…please…”, like he begs Roy to protect Riza (but that’s just my interpretation). Roy screams for help, for a doctor, only finding a scared/startled Riza at the door of Berthold’s study.
    External image

    (using some mangareader scan since I’m too lazy to take a picture myself right now. By the way, great use of comparison between startled/scared Riza and surprised Riza)
    In Brotherhood, Berthold tells Roy to take care of Riza first and then tells him she knows the secrets, dying afterwards.

In my opinion, Berthold seems more concerned for his daughter in the manga, but that’s a matter of interpreting, I guess.
If Arakawa-san didn’t adress it in side works, this characterisation of Berthold most likely was taken from his pretty neglected outward appearance and of course the tattooed array on Riza’s back that seems to restrain her until Roy finally burns off part of it (and proves to her that flame alchemy is used for the good after the war).
Actually, I stumbled upon one fanfiction that depicts Berthold a little differently, only slowly succumbing to this headcanon-characterisation (if he reaches it at all, it’s been a while since I read it).

It’s Espionage by Janieshi, It concentrates mostly on young Royai (and it’s soooo sweet! Even though I was heavily mistaken when I estimated Roy’s and Riza’s age) but there are some interesting scenes with Berthold and I rather liked that Berthold.

I think Berthold shipped Royai! 

I really do. I also disagree with anyone who says he didn’t Love Riza. 

I think he loved her very very much. And even if his tattooing her was not done with her full consent, I don’t think he was happy to do it. I think he only tattooed her because he was at a point in his life were he could only trust one person. And that was Riza. 

I don’t think he ever abused her. I think he shut himself out because of his work. I think he believed that it was the best for both of them. 

After Riza’s mother passed I think he blamed himself. And so felt it as better not to let himself get to attached to her. 

So when he took Roy on as an apprentice I truly believe that he was happy for her. I don’t think he hated Roy.

I think he wanted her to get close to him.  

Pre-series Royai + [incomplete] FMA Timeline

based on Fullmetal Alchemist Perfect Guidebook 2 + 3 and manga

Everything is canon (i.e. manga-based since it’s the original material by Hiromu Arakawa) unless stated otherwise. Events not taken from the guidebook timeline are marked with an asterisk, and were based on the manga (and/or FMA:B, if necessary) instead.

WARNING: manga and FMA:Brotherhood spoilers!

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Berthhold Hawkeye

I’ve been meaning to talk about this for a little while, and now I finally have the time to do so. I think that the relationship between Riza and her father is one often misinterpreted, and often centered on one issue: whether or not Berthold was abusive. Personally, I align with the belief that he wasn’t. At a passing glance, one might assume that he was, but I think it’s more complicated than that. We really need to understand Berthold, not only as a father, but also as a person, before we make assumptions.

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