While travelling to Ishval, an argument causes the Elric brothers to go their own separate ways. Meanwhile, Sheska and Winry discover the disturbing truth about the Führer's secretary.

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While visiting the grave of Maes Hughes, Winry encounters Sheska. Meanwhile with the tractor they were using has broken down and then explodes, the Elric brothers must continue their journey on foot to Ishval with Ed (whose hair is messed up from the explosion) complaining there is no other way to get there besides walking in the heat. Arriving at a nearby town, Ed hopes to find a replacement vehicle so they could continue their journey to Ishval. However, Al starts an argument which not only regards Ed's impulsive nature and inability to thoroughly plan ahead, but also their mission to stop Scar. Al is worried that if they stop Scar, it could affect their mission to get their bodies back. When Al states if it is better to deal with the Homunculi first, it results in a transmutation fight between him and Ed, by using transmuted objects against each other. Seeing Ed as stubborn, Al complains about it and Ed angrily walks off alone. At a restaurant in Central City, after Winry and Sheska take time to get their names right due to meeting each other briefly once before at Elicia's birthday, Sheska reveals she had been investigating Hughes' death and discovered some unusual information and can only tell Winry this since she cannot trust anyone in the State Military, not even Colonel Mustang.

As Ed has trouble adapting with Al not being there, Sheska takes Winry back to her house. With Winry refusing to read all the books she has, Sheska summarizes for her that when Hughes was investigating Laboratory 5 and the Ishval Civil War, he was likely killed for uncovering a deep secret that no one was meant to learn. As Al walks by himself, he knows despite what happened and the seriousness of their situation, he recalls that woman is several steps ahead of them. Someone taps on Al's armor, who at first Al believes is Ed, but is actually the snake-chimera Martel. In Central, Sheska reveals the mystery has to do with the Führer's secretary, the woman who started the war in Ishval. The mysteries that Sheska reveals is that Douglas actually died two years before the war with conclusive proof sent from her hometown, her name not being removed from the active duty roster, and that if Douglas was really alive today, her age would be within her 50's instead of her 30's. Sheska believes Douglas is an alien, which Winry shoots the theory down, and Sheska admits she can't monitor Douglas' activities due to her position as a records clerk in the military being temporary, and that Douglas is always with the Führer. Winry suggests they tap her phone line instead.

Al learns that Martel has followed him and Ed to acquire information about the other Homunculi. At Central Command, once dressing up in one of Sheska's military uniforms, Winry has to hide her face when she sees Lt. Ross and Sgt. Brosh due to having met them before, though Ross notices something. To Sheska's surprise, Winry is able to easily pick the locks to the door, leading them to the underground tunnel where the phone lines are connected to. After taking time to set up a connection for their headphones, the two girls wait. Meanwhile, Al questions Martel's goal since it would waste the sacrifice of Greed and the other chimeras who died protecting her, and Martel points out she has nowhere else to go due to being a chimera. Al leaves, stating he won't allow Martel to do as she pleases, understanding how similar she is to Scar. As Ed continues his search, he remembered a similar incident from the past.

Winry and Sheska's phone tap is successful when Envy contacts Douglas (Sloth) to complain about his current mission in the north. As Winry recognizes Envy's name, Douglas noticing the static caused by the wiretap, orders Envy to hang up while she deals with the issue. As Winry and Sheska are ready to leave, Sloth appears in her full water form, and the two young girls are forced to flee in terror. Meanwhile, Ross and Brosh are rushing in their direction, with Ross believing that girl she saw before was Winry. Just before Winry and Sheska reach the exit, Winry trips, and Sloth's face appears when she moves into position, to which Winry recognizes as the face of Ed and Al's mom. Before Sloth can finish the two girls off, Ross and Brosh arrive, forcing her to retreat. Meanwhile, since Ed recalled that Al was close to a river when he ran away before, he is able to find Al who now agrees that stopping Scar comes first. They don't have to walk to Ishval as Martel arrives on a motorcycle with a sidecar attached. Ed, who doesn't know her, graciously accepts, while Al quietly states that he hasn't given up on stopping her. As Martel drives them down the path, the Elrics recall the arguments they had in the past.

Fullmetal Alchemist 2003 Anime episodes
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