Alchemy: the mystical power to alter the natural world; something between magic, art, and science. When two brothers, Edward and Alphonse Elric, dabbled in this power to grant their dearest wish, one of them lost an arm and a leg... and the other became nothing but a soul locked into a body of living steel. Now Edward is an agent of the government, a slave of the military-alchemical complex, using his unique powers to obey orders... even to kill. Except his powers aren't unique. The world has been ravaged by the abuse of alchemy. And in pursuit of the ultimate treasure, the Philosopher's Stone, their enemies are even more ruthless than they are...
Edward and Al are introduced in their plight to find the Philosopher's Stone. It all started when Ed and Alphonse were children and attempted to bring back their dead mother with Alchemy, something considered the biggest of all sins in their world. The results of this were catastrophic for them and their friends and family, and their father, Hohenheim, had already left years before. After they attempted bringing Trisha Elric, their mother, back to life, Ed was taken to the "Truth", which decided that as compensation for such a sin, that he would take Ed's leg. Alphonse, however, was not so lucky. Truth took his whole body and placed somewhere else within the Gate. Ed saw that his brother, his only remaining Family member, was gone, and that he had also gained information about Alchemy no one would ever think about, being able to transmute without a circle, for one. After he saw Al disappear, he drew transmutation circles all over his body, one on his heart, on on his head, and one on his arm, telling himself that he would willingly lose these body parts if it meant that Al could get brought back to life. Luckily, Ed only lost his right arm, and was able to transmute his brothers soul, something else thought unthinkable, into a nearby suit of armor, thus saving his life and soul, if only temporarily. The first chapter starts with The two alchemist, the second is The price of life, the third is The Mining Town, and the fourth is the Battle on the train.
Within these chapters a lot is shown about how Ed and Al react to certain things, and characters are introduced and this volume hands out the meat and potatoes of what FMA really is all about. Ed'd character is deeper than most main characters of an anime or manga, and he is extremely emotional about certain things and or memories. At first he comes off as a snot nosed kid, and then shows that he is smarter and more capable than most people get out of him. A stereotypical character, at least, that is at first. His role as the older brother is challenged a lot by the trials he faces in everyday life, and it scares him. Thoguh he may seem like a stereotypical character for a manga series, Ed shows that he actually has real emotions in the course of Fullmetal Alchemist volume I.
- Chapter 1: The Two Alchemists
- Chapter 2: The Price of Life
- Chapter 3: The Mining Town
- Chapter 4: Battle on the Train