The nation of Amestris sets the ground for the story of Fullmetal Alchemist. The events that occurred there reveal the truth behind Alchemy and the Philosopher's Stone. Although the epic adventure shared by the Elric brothers and their companions is great, it is not the only one. Across the sea, in the nation of Bornea, there is another military, another slew of National Alchemists, and a sinister plot threatening to shake the foundations of the earth.
It was a hot day, the sun blazing down on the forehead of the annoyed Major. He sat in the back of a jeep, his arms outstretched, staring up at the angry glowing orb in the sky through his dark sunglasses. His golden hair glimmered as the wind played through it, the tips looking as sharp as daggers. His two escorts sat up front driving and keeping watch while he drifted in and out of sleep. He was being relocated, at least that was what the orders were. Usually one didn't need to go back to Central to receive other orders before being reassigned, but this must have been something either very unusual, or very important...or very top-secret. He didn't know which, but any of the three meant bad news.
He yawned and cracked his knuckles one at a time, careful not to break his fingers as four of them were covered in hard silver rings bearing alchemic symbols upon them. He flipped open his silver watch to check the time. "Good god...there's an empty road in front of us, can't this heap go any faster?" he complained, leaning forward and gripping the two escorts' shoulders. As if complaining would get them there any faster.
He arrived hours later, fully rested now that he'd been given enough time to sleep, but he'd regrettably be awake all night. "Greetings, Major Hearst!" he was saluted at the entrance. "Make way for the Volt Alchemist!" He was ushered inside and brought into a dark meeting room with a projector and folding chairs. "What's going on?" he asked one of his inferiors. He didn't receive a satisfactory answer, he was merely told to wait. He was going to be partnered up for his next assignment, a prospect he did not feel happy about. Not to mention, it was another National Alchemist, and on top of that, a female. He felt very competitive so he knew this was going to be very difficult.
He remained silent as the grave and sat behind the projector while his new partner arrived and their immediate superior officer entered with a few others of even higher rank. "Officers. What you are about to see and hear are military top-secret. You are to be sent on an assignment outside of your normal jurisdiction, part undercover, part military. This will be difficult and it was not easy choosing the appropriate team for this but we are confident your talents will see you through this best." it was explained to them.
Their superior put a film in the projector and let it roll. "This was received three days ago from an area to the far West. Observe."
It was footage of a train at sunset. Or at least, that was what it appeared to be. Before long, there appeared to be someone on horseback riding alongside the train. Moments later, after something very odd emanating from the rider, the train derailed. The carnage and mayhem were spectacular. Whoever had been holding the camera began examining the wreckage, giving remarkable detail to the dead, mangled bodies within. Some survivors were being kidnapped by more shadowy horseback riders.
Suddenly the camera was dropped and the person holding the camera could now be seen, a junior-ranking military officer. He crawled backwards along the ground, looking up horrified at an unseen attacker. A heavy boot with an overcoat stomped the ground in front of the officer, though the camera did not get a look any higher than that. Finally a voice could be heard. "Let me show you why they call me the Acid Alchemist..." it rasped. The officer was picked up bodily by two slim but powerful arms. He screamed in pain and horror until...his skin began to melt off until nothing was left in the so-called Acid Alchemist's arms but bones and a partially burnt uniform before it was dropped.
The film stopped. "As you can see..." the highest-ranking officer who had come in said grimly, "We have quite a situation on our hands. We have no idea what we're dealing with but this is the fifth such incident in the last three months."
"You see, similar accidents and kidnappings have been happening for a while now. Only, we were happy to chalk this up to random bandits and slave traders until now, we left it to local law enforcement to deal with. But some of our strategists have been following these incidents and each time, they were moving further and futher East-towards us. That's why we had that junior officer patrolling there, just in case; it was the next major area for such an attack to potentially occur. And it did. And this time, they got caught on film." their immediate superior explained.
"What? Why the hell didn't that Acid guy destroy the tape? He attacked the officer, he wouldn't be stupid enough to leave evidence lying around would he?" Major Hearst expressed his concern.
"That was our question. We think that they intended to make themselves known and so they left it for us to find. Regardless, they are a well-organized and powerful group to pull off this many attacks of this magnitude, especially if they are employing Alchemists." was the reply.
"So you want us-" Hearst referred to himself and his new partner, "to walk right into this obvious trap and see what we can find out?" he smirked. As if he couldn't see right through it.
"When you put it that way, it does sound foolish." It was admitted. "But you two are experienced, talented Alchemists. You should prove more than a match for them if they attack. Your mission, however, is not to engage, merely to investigate. You are under no circumstances to instigage a battle without first reconvening with us and reporting your findings, unless you are attacked first. Is that understood?"
Hearst nodded, looking over at his new partner, wondering if she agreed with this arrangement.