Resembool, Amestris – 1921
Kiersten woke up in the middle of an empty road with a bag of groceries spilled next to her. She rubbed her head, trying to remember why it was that she was here, and why she had an incredibly terrible headache. Slowly but surely, foreign and familiar memories came back to her. After memories of the gate passed, images flashed in her mind of her Amestris-self.
She remembered walking down the street, her hands full of groceries. It was well past midnight in Resembool, but that didn't stop this young alchemist from wandering about doing errands.
Around her neck she wore the sacred alchemist's charm. Even Edward Elric wore this symbol on the back of his red jacket. She was an alchemist, and a skilled one at that. She was known as the "Celestial Alchemist", and she and others like her used their skills to help the people of Amestris. She belonged to a society called "The Alchemists Guild" where the scientists researched new kinds of alchemy. That was ironic, thought Kiersten, because in her world she had been part of a fan club called the Alchemists Guild.
When the memories stopped, she looked all around her. She began picking up the scattered items and putting them back in the large bag that had spilled all of its contents onto the ground. When everything was back in place, she picked up the bag and began heading to where she knew the Rockbells lived. She could tell that she was in Resembool from the vast empty plains of grass. She figured that maybe Winry might know something about her Amestris-self.
As Kiersten turned the corner, she saw a girl with long black hair, standing, and staring at the ground. She was wearing a simply made tiny little black dress that came down to her knees. She was barefoot. Her left fist, which was made out of automail, was clenched tightly, and her right arm was missing. Kiersten looked a little closer at the young girl. Fragments of metal were dropping occasionally from where her missing arm should have been attached to her shoulder. Tears were rolling gently off of her face, and they hit the ground without a sound.
She must only be around six or seven years old! She wonder what had happened to her. She put down her bags of groceries and walked over to the crying child. "What's the matter? Did something happen to you?" Kiersten asked sweetly.
"I'm…looking for…a mechanic. I can't…seem…to find her…" replied the girl.
"Who is she? Maybe I can help?" said Kiersten.
"Rockbell. Winry… Rockbell."
"Winry? I know her, oh; you must need her to repair your arm. Just follow me, I'm heading over to her place right now." Kiersten picked up her groceries and started to walk to her house, the crying child following close behind. "What's your name, kid?"
"I don't…want to tell you my name."
"What was that?" Kiersten was startled by the child's comment.
"My name is unimportant…and…" she started to explain. "I can…tell that you…are…an alchemist…"
"What does alchemy have anything to do with your name?"
"Alright then, I won't pry."
The girl knew that if she told the alchemist her name, she would use that nasty charm of hers to send her back to The Gate. And she was terrified of The Gate.
"That's okay, then, I guess… Let's just get home, I'm a bit jumpy." Kiersten was a little confused on the matter. She felt a strange lack of aura around the girl, and she had no idea why. Unless…she was a Homunculus, and her body was devoid of a soul… but then…Kiersten's thoughts were interrupted by a loud clanging sound.
"EDWARD YOU MORON!" shouted a girl.
It was definitely Winry, bashing poor Ed on the head with her wrench again. Every time that Ed came home, his automail was always trashed up, and Winry didn't exactly take kindly to the fact that Edward always managed to destroy the automail that she put her heart and soul into.
"I swear, one of these days, she is going to give that poor guy brain damage," Kiersten said to herself. She was not looking forward to Winry's and Ed's screaming and clanging all night long, the same as every time he returned from his travels. When Kiersten opened the door to Winry's House, all action that was previously going on stopped - mid-place.
"Evelyn?" said Winry, wide-eyed.
"Evelyn?" repeated Kiersten, now even more confused.
Winry dropped her wrench and released her tight grasp on Edward's long blonde hair. "Evelyn, is that you? What happened to you? You're just as bad as Ed! Every time you two come back here, you're all busted up!" Winry then walked towards the girl, who she was calling Evelyn. "You really live up to your name, Wrath."
So witch one was really the girl's name, Evelyn or Wrath?
Ed recovered from his daze and stomped to his feet. "Wrath?!? I'll show you wrath, Winry, if you don't stop bashing me over the head with that damn wrench!"
"No, Ed, you idiot! Look, it's Wrath! That Homono-watcha-ma-call-it kid!" yelled Winry.
"Winry, please keep it down. I don't want to listen to you and Mr. Pipsqueak bashing it out all night!"
As if on cue, Ed jumped up from the ground, in a crazed frenzy. "Who are you calling a bean-sprout midget?!?" roared Ed. He started stomping around the room like a steer with mad-cow disease.
"Hey…Winry…I'm sorry for…for busting this arm again…" This time it was the little girl who spoke. Winry hugged the little girl as if she was comforting a younger sister. Ed calmed down again.
"Hey, hey, hold up here? Just who is this kid, Win?" stammered Kiersten.
"She's Evelyn, or Wrath, one of the…"
But then Wrath cut her off. "Don't say it!" It was too late; Kiersten had finally gathered what was going on. This girl's name was Wrath, it wasn't a nickname. And Wrath was the name of one of the infamous homunculus…one of the seven deadly sins.
Kiersten grabbed her pendant and proceeded to complete the circle so she could send Wrath back to The Gate. There was no way that she was going to let her endanger the life of one of her favorite characters.
"No!" Winry jumped in front of Wrath, protecting her as if she were just a regular child. "She's not a bad kid! She's not the same as the others! She fights against the bad ones to stop history from repeating itself! She's on our side!"
Kiersten dropped her pendant and nodded. "Okay."
Alphonse Elric was outside, standing by the door. He finally had a human body after all these years, thanks to the perseverance of his brother. But he wanted to avoid any more screaming matches between Winry and his older brother. The worst part about it, thought Alphonse, was that this was their deranged way of flirting. "Why does Edward always get the better end of the string?" he said to himself. He opened the window a little bit so he could still hear the conversation going on inside.
"I am one of the only Homunculi who still possess a conscious," Wrath began to explain. "Winry gave me the name Evelyn when she found me, after the girl I was supposed to be so that I wouldn't cause any more trouble. All of the old Homunculi were either killed or they mysteriously disappeared. But now…now there is a new generation of homunculus. They have the same abilities as the previous seven but no one knows where they came from. I…fear it will not be an easy task to destroy them this time…they do not have the same goals as the others and I did, and I am unaware of who their human selves were."
While Kiersten and Winry listened to Wrath and Winry worked on his automail, Edward was sprawled out lazily on the couch while he waited for Winry to start on his arm.
Silence filled the room. Well, almost. There was still the crick, crick, crick sound from Winry's wrench working on Evelyn's arm. It was already about a fourth of the way finished. Winry had always been passionate about automail. She even referred to herself as "The Great and Beautiful Mechanic, Winry Rockbell."
Kiersten leaned back on her seat. It was past 2 o'clock on the morning already, and she wished she could just find her friends so she could tell them just what kind of a situation they had gotten themselves into. She wondered if they had found each other already, or if they had met up with other familiar faces from Amestris.
BANG-CRACK-SNAP-WHOOSH-THWOP! A huge sound resonated throughout Resembool. Everybody looked up from what they were doing, startled by the sound. Alphonse rushed inside and slammed the door behind him, a terrified look on his face. Just minutes later, footsteps could be heard approaching the Rockbell door. The knob of the front door began to turn.
"Oh no, oh no…" The color (what little of it there was) drained from Evelyn's face. "It's them."
"By them, you don't mean…?" Winry began.
"Alphonse, Winry, Kiersten! Get Pinako and get out of here!" shouted Ed.
"No way, how the hell are you supposed to fight them with an arm missing?!?" Alphonse shouted back at Ed.
"Get out of here!" This time it was Evelyn who spoke. "They're after me."
The door began to open. Winry grabbed her dog, Den, and ran out to the shed to get Granny Pinako, with Ed, Al, and Kiersten following close behind. Wrath used alchemy to create a rock blocker. "You won't get me that easily." She stared at it for a few second to make sure that it was as good a she could make it, made a "thumbs up", and gave a frightened half-smile. She turned around and quickly ran after the others.
The person that was trying to get into the Rockbell household banged on the door for a few moments. Then a feminine fist crashed through the door. Another, larger fist ripped the door off its hinges and swung it against the rock blocker. The door slammed opened all the way, and Evelyn's rock blocker snapped into hundreds of splinters, flying all over the room.
"Damn, too bad! Looks like no one's home," said a girl with short, black hair that was styled like a punk-rocker's hair. An ouroboros tattoo was on her left thigh. She wore a black mini-skirt and a turtle-neck belly-shirt. She wore elbow-length gloves without fingers. Her feet were covered by stockings without toes or heels. She appeared to be around the age of seventeen. Her name was Envy, the homunculus with the power to change into any other form.
"Aw, I wanted to eat someone…I'm hungry, Lust!" said a short, fat man who looked like he badly needed a shower and a shave. His eyes were small, beady, and were devoid of pupils. He wore a tight black jump-suit, which revealed his many rolls of fat. His feet were so tiny that they looked as if there was no possible way that they could support the heavy-man's enormous weight. This was Gluttony, the homunculus whose sole purpose in life was to eat everything out of existence.
"Look, Envy, Gluttony, there was someone here just seconds ago. I bet they're still nearby. They couldn't have gotten too far." A woman with short, straight, black hair walked calmly into the room. She wore a tight black dress, cut rather low at the top, showing the ouroboros just above her breasts. Her arms were covered by long black gloves. She was the new Lust, but while the old Lust was probably the most human of all, this Lust was as cold as iron.
Another female figure walked into the room. "Lust, let's go, before they get too far ahead of us." This girl looked as if she was in her mid-twenties, and only one of her eyes had a silver pupil. Her other eye had the ouroboros on it. She wore an open black vest that reached up just below her chin with a black sports bra underneath. She wore long, tight, bell-bottom black pants and black high-heel sandals. She had long black hair that reached below her waist, and it was pulled back in a braid. Her name was Pride, the only homunculus who could predict the future.
"Alright, Pride. Let's go." The woman named Lust smiled evilly as she extended one of her fingers in the blink of an eye, and it pierced through the back door. She then ripped it off of its hinges. "This is going to be fun."
The group had already gotten south of Resembool. Kiersten was sprinting for her life, sticking close to Ed, Al, Winry, Pinako and Den. The homunculi were still hot on their trail, even though all traces of the night had vanished with the dawn. The group was running low on energy; there was no way that they could keep this up for much longer. If they didn't find an ideal sanctuary, they would all be doomed.
They wound up near a river bank shrouded in trees. Just as they were about to sit down and rest, huge snapping sound echoed through the area. They all got silent. They heard voices talking from a short distance away. It was the Homunculi.
"Lust…I don't think we're in Resembool any more…" said Gluttony.
"Well, then, we'll just have to turn back. We've got unfinished business to attend to," Lust replied.
"Aw, but we chased them all the way here, why not just finish them off now?" complained Envy.
"Oh, stop complaining Envy. We'll finish off the automail mechanics some other time." This time it was Pride who spoke.
"Oh, phooey. I hate it when you do this. We need to get rid of them quick so Fullmetal can't get those limbs of his repaired."
"Envy, just relax. Listen to Pride and me. We'll get the job done, but right now we have more pressing matters to attend to. We wouldn't want to anger the boss, now would we?"
"Back to Resembool! Back to Resembool!" squealed Gluttony.
Envy turned towards the wooded area and called out, "You can't hide forever, Rockbell girls! We're coming to get you, and we'll get you when you've got your backs towards us!" And then the group of Homunculi turned and walked away.
Edward let out a long breath. "You mean they didn't know we were with you guys, Winry?"
"I guess not," Winry replied, letting out an equally long breath.
Kiersten stood up to dust herself off. "If they had known, I don't think that they would have let us go so easily. What do you think they meant by having other business to attend to?" She subconsciously clapped her hands together to get the dust away, and she brushed her hands against her side. Just as Kiersten was about to lean back on one of the trees, she felt a stinging sensation pulse through her body. She yelped a little and she jumped up.
"Kiersten, are you okay?" asked Alphonse.
"Yeah, but…Ah," Kiersten screamed. She gripped her elbows hard, and her body started glowing with alchemist light. The wind picked up and swirled in a vortex around her body. She screamed out at the top of her lungs in fear.
"Edward, what did you do?!" screeched Winry over the howling winds.
"I didn't do anything!" he yelled back at her. At this point, everyone had their ears covered in an attempt to block out the terrible noise.
Almost as suddenly as it had begun, the light around Kiersten died down. She dropped to her knees and then ultimately fell over face-first into the ground. Silence filled the air. It was far too silent.
Edward walked over to the fallen girl and turned her over with his human arm. "Kiersten? Are you okay?" There was no answer. He put his fingers under her nose to see if any air was being blown out or breathed in. "She's not breathing!" he exclaimed.
Alphonse rushed over to her. "Kiersten!"
Winry was looking around frantically. "Does anyone know CPR?"
Alphonse took a deep breath. "I do." He knelt over Kiersten and opened her mouth. Just as he was about to begin the process, her eyes sprung open and she almost screamed, but it was muffled by Alphonse's mouth. He jumped backwards after half-a-second, realizing that she was fully conscious and breathing. "Ah! I'm so sorry, Kiersten!" he exclaimed.
The group all looked at her fearfully. "Are you alright?" Pinako asked. "What happened?"
"Yeah, I'm fine," she replied. "I think I accidentally performed Alchemy on myself. I'm just not used to stuff like that."
"What are you talking about?" said Ed. "You're a master Alchemist, how could you not be used to it?"
"I've got to tell you something," began Kiersten, laughing softly to herself. "I'm not really the Kiersten that you all know; I'm from another world." Then she turned towards Edward. "You, Edward, of all people should know what it is I'm talking about. I'm from the other side of the Gate."
Edward gawked at her. "You can't be serious."
"I am. Really. It's okay if you don't completely trust me, I don't mind." Kiersten stretched out her arm as if she wanted to shake hands with Edward.
Edward shook her hand, and they all laughed. "Well now that that's over, we need to head over to Central. We need to warn them of what's been going on, and I'm sure that they'd be more than willing to let everyone have a room since Winry and Pinako's house got trashed."
Alphonse was still huddled to himself, blushing insanely from what started out as CPR but ended up being a kiss. "Sh-should w-w-we g-get going th-then?" he asked nervously.
Ed chuckled and patted his little brother on the back. "Yeah, Al, let's go. What, you embarrassed or something?"
"N-No!" Alphonse retorted.
"Let's get going, or we'll never make it to the train station before breakfast time," said Winry.
"I thought Ed was the only one who thought with his stomach!" said Pinako. Winry took out her wrench, but didn't hit her grandma over the head considering the fact that only Ed deserved that kind of brutal love.
They all started walking out of the wooded area and headed for the train station. "You know what?" asked Kiersten.
"What?" replied Winry.
"This is going to be fun."