He can hear their strained breathing but that's all, and he's never liked the General's silence and he likes Ed's even less.
"Don't go to sleep," he murmurs into Ed's hair, and thinks of their mother, long ago, telling a story about spinning straw into gold.
I'm going to kill Ed when he gets back, Al told the General. I just thought I should tell you in advance in case there's paperwork.
Dear Ed: I miss you more than you can ever know.
Al crouches down on a dune looking down on the camp and draws an array in the sand, thinking of Gunnar with a dull pang of grief.
God, he's gorgeous, even cut up. Especially cut up.
They smuggled Al out of Central and back to Rizembul, where they rented a small house with room for Ed's books and Al's wings.
When you live in a small apartment, it's hard to miss when your brother comes home smelling like sex and absinthe.
Sometimes Al thinks that somewhere back in the Armstrong family tree lurks an alchemical accident in a sequin factory.
Riza looks straight ahead. "Personally, I found during my time in Ishbal that nothing stops a career faster than a bullet between the eyes."
Al sits in a doorway puzzling absently over the problem of what array to draw to bandage his arm before he bleeds to death.
Ed's scowl deepens. "Want us to leave and come back when we aren't virgins anymore?"