Like many such things it had started off innocently enough; with a letter. Riza had just fed her dog, Black Hayate when the innocent looking envelope flopped through her letter box with the usual jumble of bills and junk mail. She read it as she drank her tea, startled to see it was from an old apprentice of her fathers'.
Dear Miss Hawkeye,
My name is Jonathan Eastwood. I don't know if you remember but I was once a student of your father. I recently finished my degree in alchemy and am about to start my doctorate in elemental alchemy. I am writing to enquire if you know what happened to your fathers' research after his death. As you know, he was the foremost expert in flame alchemy and the chance to incorporate his work into my thesis would be very much appreciated. Please contact me if you are aware of where his research is.
Riza sighed and patted Hayate on the head
"This is going to cause trouble Hayate", she muttered as she shrugged on her greatcoat. After a moments indecision she grabbed the letter as she left for work. Mustang would almost certainly have an opinion about Jonathan writing to her after such a long time and it was as much his secret as hers after all.
Lieutenant Hawkeye didn't get a moment alone with the Colonel until lunchtime. Watching carefully as the door shut behind Havoc, she dug the letter from her purse and placed it on his desk with the next set of files.
"Hawkeye, you seem to have given me your mail."
"This particular letter concerns you as well, sir. I thought you might have an opinion on the matter."
With a curious glance at his stoic lieutenant, Mustang read through the letter. Twice.
"Have you replied yet?"
"I only received it this morning sir. And, well . . . I'm not entirely sure what I should say"
Mustang ran a hand through his mop of messy black hair, contemplating the least troublesome response, remembering for a horrific instant the scent of burning flesh and fresh blood amid hot sand, accompanied by a woman's pitiful whimpering.
"Tell him you don't know what happened to it. Your father never disclosed where he kept it and you didn't find it while going through his papers after his death. Hopefully that should get him to focus his doctorate on a less dangerous topic."
"Yes sir. Thank you sir."
The lieutenant reached to collect the letter but was stopped by Mustang grabbing her wrist. They shared a wordless look that conveyed all he needed to say. With a nod, he released her and strode out of the office for some strong coffee laced with stronger spirits. He could only hope it would be enough to bury the sound of the whimpers that echoed around his head.
Hawkeye, ever the faithful subordinate, replied saying she was very sorry but she was unable to help, as her father had never told her where he kept the research. She then promptly forgot the matter, attempting to make the Colonel complete his paperwork before the weekend started without resorting to violence. From the sounds emerging from the inner office of Colonel Mustang, she didn't succeed.
Eastwood sighed as he read the letter. This doesn't make sense! She has to know where it is, or how else would Mustang be able to do flame alchemy? He straightened in his chair at his epiphany. Now there's a thought. Mustang!