Scientific Inquiry in Alchemy

Foreword: Please read all the bold words/sentences in the foreword before you read anything else in this story. You are welcome to read the whole foreword, though.

Not all the scientific reasoning is based on scientific facts. Because it is merely impossible to manipulate matter with a simple drawing of a circle and placing hands upon it, there is no scientific reasoning to support any of these lab experiments. These lab experiments were never performed.

For anyone who does not have much interest in science or interest in alchemy, I do not suggest you read it further. This is for people who would like to see the "science" behind it all – an explanation to how things "work". I would gladly base everything upon real science, but the way Full Metal Alchemist has presented itself in the anime series, there is no real science to support it. If you would like to read real science, I would like to post a whole paragraph as to how certain problems are related to real biological facts such as glial cells, blood-brain barrier, astrocytes, recombination, linkage maps, or whatever other science there is that is real, but this is anime, and this site is a fanfiction site, thus it would not interest many to read about real science, for it would read like a textbook, not to mention that this lab/story seems to read like one already. If you don't like science, don't read it.

Of course, this is in a structure of a story format as well as a lab book format. After watching only the first dvd of Full Metal Alchemist, there were many things scientifically wrong with the series in the biology sense. (I've only seen one dvd so far, so don't expect so much reference to the story.) Though, I will not list them for the sake that Full Metal Alchemist is only an anime series under the category of fiction…and hopefully not nonfiction. To make sense of all this alchemy and biological sense, I will compile a lab book full of lab experiments based on the alchemy laws (these laws are all not real).

In the course of Edward's childhood, he will keep this lab book as a reference to what the Laws of Alchemy (again, not real!) are and occasionally add excerpts of his life. He will start with the fundamentals – labs with predictable solutions – but as he continues experiments and find law after law, theorem by theorem, his lab book will end as the last experiment of trying to revive his mother's dead body, where all the laws and theorems he has compiled is put to the ultimate test.

The story starts from here…

Lab #1: Alchemy's Closed System

Lab #2: Alchemy Circle's Potential Energy

Working with alchemy has sparked an interest in my young mind. Having to read books full of experiments in relation to alchemy and studying alchemy in general and in detail, I have conducted experiments of my own and have used the basic information into use when exploring the depths of alchemy's mystery. Creating hypotheses to only find myself stumbling across an unspoken theorem is like magic. With each theorem acting like the thread of unwoven ideas bombarding me with more questions and ideas, the motive of cracking this unsolved alchemy code strengthens. One sentence holds so much information, and a paragraph holds all those facts into woven ideas and theorems – the laws life obeys. Alchemy is not just a science – it is the science that has drawn me into the clutches of unanswered experiments; an unexplained science.

The experiments I have done thus far will be recorded into these very pages – the composition of my lab book. Materials, hypothesis, and explanations will support each experiment as I try to crack the works of alchemy.

My name is Edward Elrich, and I am an alchemist.

Lab #1: Alchemy's Closed System

Materials: white chalk, two people, diagram of the alchemy circle, marbles (3 or more)

Purpose: Alchemy has a closed system, in which all energies within the alchemy circle will stay within the circle, and no energy can enter or exit the closed system – thus the definition of closed system. A closed system is the environment that a scientist is focusing upon, in which the anything that happens outside the system does not affect it. This, in no way, means that there is no transfer of energy, for what the scientist studies in a closed system depends on what he/she is studying to verify how much external interference will affect the study.

Hypothesis: The marbles will be able to enter the alchemy circle, disrupting the energies within the circle by the gas particles in the air inside the closed system. The disruption is the additional energy from the motion of the marbles rolling across the alchemy circle. Thus, energy and matter can pass through the alchemy circle at any given point in time.

Procedure: Alan and I have drawn the alchemy circle in a dark room. The doors are closed. We placed out hands at the positions of the circle. There is nothing in the center of the circle. After one minute waiting our hands to be placed on the circle, I had used my elbow to hit a bag of marbles beside me (bag of marbles only one inch away from the edge of the circle), letting all the marbles fall out of the bag.

Repeat the procedure until the marbles roll towards the alchemy circle.


Observations: The marbles rolled in the direction away from the alchemy circle the first time. After I have tried five times, the marbles headed for the direction of the circle, but rolled back before it reached the edge. After Al and I had let go of the alchemy process five times because of the four failed procedures in trying to push the marbles in the right direction, we always felt wind coming from the cracked window of our house.

Conclusion: For the ground to be flat, it is impossible for the marbles to redirect their direction. The wind must be coming into the house for the reason of wind patterns that have no relation to the experiment. We must perform this experiment again, in an environment where there is no disruption such as wind or other energies that may intrude into our scientific inquiry.

Procedure: Repeat procedure directed in the previous procedure instructions except pushing the bag with your elbow. Pick up the marbles with your mouth and drop it into the circle or kick a marble into the circle with your foot so ensure that the marbles will have a higher probability of making it into the circle.

Observations: A broom had fallen during our experiment. It fell over the circle, but its downward direction had been redirected and fell right outside the alchemy circle. Nevertheless, I had a marble in my mouth from the start of the alchemy process and dropped it in, and it fell into the circle. The second marble I picked up with my mouth, I had tried to drop it into the alchemy circle, but it dropped outside the edge, never going into the circle.

Table 1.1 – Succession of Marbles

First marble in my mouth: it went in

Second marble picked up after the experiment started: it went out

Third marble picked up after experiment started: it went out

Fourth marble picked up after experiment started: it went out

Fifth marble picked up after experiment started: it went out

Sixth marble picked up after experiment started: it went out

(Observations continued): The first marble rolled in the circle after I dropped it from my mouth, but it never escaped the alchemy circle. It merely stopped about an estimated two inches from the alchemy circle's edge.

Conclusion: Any matter in the start of an alchemy process can enter the alchemy system. Any matter that is introduced after the alchemy process begins will not enter the alchemy system. The question of matter taken out of the alchemy process once it is set inside the system is in question.


"Al," I called.


"I want to try to make something out of this dirt I found from the ground," I held up a pot from the shelf.

"Did you record our observations from the last lab, though?" he asked.

"Yes, I did."

"Why don't we try when we know more information, so that we won't fail," he suggested as he looked at me from afar, wondering if I would even heed his advice.

"But I want to do something fun. It can be another experiment we can log into our lab book!"

"Alright. It beats marbles anyways," he sat down next to me. "What shall we make?"

"Something simple," I said contemplatively. "Nothing too difficult. Let's try to make this dirt turn into a dirt sculpture. All it needs is energy for it to form into some sort of shape. We're not changing it from an atomic level or anything."

"Let's try then. I don't think I see any harm in it."

We redrew the circle again with our white chalk, slowly and carefully this time, placing all the words in the right place. I poured all the dirt from the pot onto the middle of the circle.


Lab #2: Alchemy Circle's Potential Energy

Materials: white chalk, two people, dirt

Purpose: Most of the energy in the alchemy process is directly related to the area of the alchemy circle. Energy used in the alchemy process comes from the movement of gas particles within the Alchemy Circle. This is why the room temperature is to be kept at a reasonable temperature. Keeping the room at a high temperature will result in an abundant amount of energy within the alchemy circle, giving too much energy to the main alchemy material (the material at the center of the circle). If the main alchemy material receives too much energy, radioactive waves may emit as a result of the alchemy process and the release of energy.


Draw the alchemy circle at a six-foot radius. Be careful in drawing the circle. Write the instructions of what the purpose of this particular alchemy. In this case, write down the words: "Disassociate the dirt mound. From dirt mound to spread out dirt."

Place the dirt in the center of the circle in a mound. This will decrease the amount of energy needed to shape the dirt.

Close all doors and windows. Keep the room at room temperature for safety of the alchemist.

Continue the process of alchemy.

After the process is done, record what you observe and any necessary data or data tables.

Make sure the dirt mound does not hold too much energy. Caution: Dirt may be hot. Always wear gloves when removing and disposing the main alchemy materials. Some materials may contain strong fumes.

Dispose the material away. Never keep the work unless noted that it is safe for keeping.



"Okay, Al. I'm done writing everything. Now we just wait for the results," I placed my lab book beside me, just outside the edge of the circle.

I scanned the alchemy circle and the materials around the room. Everything seemed to be okay.

"Let's start," I said, giving a big grin to my brother, while receiving eyes of wonder and excitement in return.

"Let's go," he said, and placed his hands upon the circle.

The alchemy process went according to plan. Everything was going perfect. We saw the dirt mound spreading itself onto the floor. The mound soon became a flat carpet of dirt. My hands felt as though they were suctioned onto the floor. It must be from the excitement. I had finally achieved the transfer of energy from the air to do the will of the alchemist – me…and Al as well. After the dirt mound had spread itself out, we felt a strong blast of wind. It pushed us back against the walls. We heard a popping sound before we flew backwards, knocking the wind out of both of us. We laid on the floor, dazed, as a cool wind rushed passed our face and against a wall, causing a nearby vase to lose balance and fall onto the floor.

We quickly got up onto our feet, staring at where the wind was heading.

Both of us silent, we looked at the floor, and there was the perfect carpeted dirt in the center of the Alchemy Circle.

"Ed…" Al started. Then we both smiled and laughed at the success we had with the dirt mound. A mere child with his kid brother had performed their first alchemy: to change the shape of a dirt mound. Nothing great, but we will head towards greater feats.

"High five!" I said, but when Al's hand rose up, I saw that his hand was red at the palm. I turned over my hand to see the same redness.

Then it hit me…


Conclusion: Within Alchemy's circle, the circle had used all of the energy from the gas particles, but all the energy was not used. After the words printed on the circle was fulfilled, the alchemy process was complete, thus, releasing the gas particles from the system. Because Al and I, Edward, were still part of the system, the pressure from outside the system – the gas particles from the rest of the room – rushed in to fill in the lower pressure, thus resulting in wind. Because there was lower pressure within the system, both alchemists' hands were suctioned onto the ground.

The words used in the previous experiment: Alchemy's Closed System, were from the famous diagram in our textbook. As to what the words mean, Al and I do not think too much on it now. It means something, but we have cracked the code to how to will alchemy to do something with the energy and how potential energy is determined with the alchemy circle's area.

As we continue to advance in our science experiments with alchemy, I presume the instructions within the circle will lengthen, but yet, how many words you can put in alchemy's circle may vary as well.


I checked if the dirt contained anything harmful because of the energy it had received in the alchemy process. Quickly scanning the dirt and poking it a bit, Al and I concluded it was not harmful, and put the dirt carefully onto an old plate, trying to remake the flatness of the dirt from our experiment and ran to our mom, saying, "Look, Mom! Look! We did this!"

She looked down at the plate of dirt.

"It was alchemy!" I said.

She smiled, patted out heads, and said, "Alchemy, huh?" She remembered Father.


Upcoming labs:

Lab #3: Alchemy's Limited Potential Energy

Lab #4: Alternative Energy Sources

Lab #5: Alchemy's Quick Circle Energy Output (Advanced Alchemist's Only)


I'm guessing no one has read it all the way up to here, and I can see why. Well, this is what happens when you need to have a break from school, and you just want to contemplate about science for a while.

Please review and tell me how this strange way of a story is like. Please tell me if I should delete this story or not. Just write "delete" in a review or something. I don't care who you are, and some people are afraid that I'll flame them back or something…and I won't. As long as you say your honest opinion. Some feedback as simple as "delete" or "bad" is good enough. If I get enough reviews that say to "delete" and not one person say it's good, then I will delete.

Well, I just need some honesty and feedback right now. Thanks. Much thanks for those who actually read through all the labs!