Story 10 – Redemption
Edward Elric Ending
A lesson without pain is meaningless. That’s because you cannot gain something without sacrificing something else in return. But, once you’ve withstood the pain and overcome it. You will gain a heart stronger than everything else. Yes. A fullmetal heart.
– Edward Elric, Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood ep. 64
In the end, Edward realized to himself that by gaining a strong heart means that you have to undergo a series of pains and sufferings, and by overcoming it all you’ll be able to learn from it while moving forward with your life. I think this series makes its readers and viewers realize that there are things in life that you wouldn’t be able to understand. However, by trying to move forward with life while learning and accepting your own mistakes, you’ll be able to find your own happiness and will be able to be contented with the path that you have chosen.
As for his goal to bring back Alphonse’s original body, Edward sacrificed his alchemy in return for Alphonse being normal again. It happened when Edward and everyone were trying to beat the evil villain, Homunculus of the Flask, but he was too strong whenever he uses alchemy. In the battle, Edward lost his automail arm which shattered into pieces and since Edward transmutes by clapping his hands, he couldn’t perform alchemy while his normal left arm was stuck. Alphonse’s armor was also broken from the battle, so he also couldn’t move to save his brother. Alphonse transmutes himself in exchange for Edward original right arm.
Knowing that his younger brother sacrificed himself, Edward was on a verge of anger. He took all his anger from the lost of Alphonse to the Homunculus of the Flask. Edward was able to defeat the Homunculus of the Flask with his final blow. After the enemy was gone, Edward and everyone surrounded Alphonse’s empty and broken armor. Edward was trying to think of a way to bring him back without using the Philosopher’s stone which Ling told him to use nor the stones inside his father. As he looked into his hands, Edward realized that alchemy was the answer. Edward went back to the “Gate of Truth”. He told “Truth”, an undesirable pure white creature, that he is sacrificing his alchemy in return for Alphonse.
It’s not about lowering myself. I was an ordinary human from the start. I’m just a mere human. Even if I don’t have alchemy. I still have everyone.
– Edward Elric
As the “Truth” heard this from Edward, he told Edward that he had beaten him and that Edward gave the right answer. The truth smiled and told Edward that the exit is at the back door pointing at Alphonse waiting in front of Alphonse’s alchemy door or his Gate of Truth.
I think this is the perfect ending for the series. The ending still catches that element of brotherly love while the protagonist realizes to himself that he can live without alchemy because he still can achieve happiness by having everyone with him. This is the reason why Edward is the title for the series. Since the series is all about accepting oneself and learning from your mistakes, these aspects are shown from Edward’s character in a more deeper perspective.