Empty, blank, bare, hollow, broken, destroyed meaningless. That's how Rose Thomas felt as she made her way barefoot across the desert. After the death of her boyfriend she was enthralled by the promises of Father Cornello, who promised that if she believed then he could bring her lost love back to her, but then a State Alchemist named Edward Elric and his younger brother Alphonse came along and exposed Cornello as a fraud who sought only to use his blind followers as soldiers for his campaign for military power. After that she just fell apart, her last hope had been nothing more than a lie, and all Edward Elric could say was to stand by her own power, even though she had nothing left.

Things only got worse in Reole after that. A bloody civil war had erupted within the city between the deserters and those who remained loyal to Cornello. This compounded with her grief, and soon she just couldn't take it anymore. Her home was being consumed by blood and fire, her love was gone, she had nothing to live for, and so she decided to end it all. But no matter what she did she just couldn't find the courage to take her own life, so finally she resolved to let nature do it for her. One day she left Reole on foot and began to wander aimlessly with no food or money, and then when she finally reached the border of Amestris she took off her clothes and proceeded naked into the desert that separated Amestris from Xing. She would succumb to the elements a lot faster if the only thing protecting her from the sun was the hair on her back, besides if she was going to die then she might as well leave the world as naked as the day she was born. She was already exhausted from having walked this far. She didn't need to pull a trigger, kick away a chair, take poison or anything; she just had to keep walking until there was absolutely nothing left.

"It's funny, he told me to get up and walk on my own two feet, and that's exactly what I'm doing… straight into the great unknown."

It didn't take long at all for her feet to start burning, and the rest of her body began to follow suit. In a matter of hours she began to ache all over and felt very dizzy. She managed to make it across several more dune before she threw up, then she stumbled and rolled down the hill landing face first in the sand. The parts of her body that hadn't already been scorched by the sun were burned by the hot sand. At this point her body hurt all over and she simply couldn't get up, it took every last bit of her willpower just to turn over onto her back. She knew it wouldn't be long now.

The wind picked up, and soon Rose's body was half covered in sand. Her mouth was so dry she was beginning to wonder if she had swallowed a mouthful of the stuff. The sun shone brightly in her eyes, but as time progressed it slowly began to get dimmer and dimmer.

"The Sun god Leto… It was my last hope… now I'm about to die with it… but it will finally see him again."

It was then that Rose saw someone standing above her, she was beginning to wonder if she was seeing things, but then it all made sense, he had come for her.

"Cain…"

She tried to raise her hand, but she couldn't do it. It had burnt too badly and was almost entirely covered in sand. Then everything went black.

(To be continued)