story 8 – Burdens and Regrets

Edward Elric Burdens

Edward burdens himself with the things that had happen to them. He of course regrets most of their mistakes, but he accepts all of it as if it was his own fault. He never tries to get away from reality and bears all the stress and weights to himself. He might be treated like a kid most of the time or acts immaturely, but Edward is very matured and independent.

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Of course, the first burden that Edward dwells to himself is Alphonse’s armored body. Without asking Alphonse, Edward is afraid that Alphonse might be blaming him from what had happen to them and to his body. However, Alphonse is has the same personality as Edward who accepts his own mistakes and never try to blame anyone for their own decisions. Alphonse even blames himself from what had happen to them instead of blaming his older brother. This is why I love their relationship.

The second burden is not becoming strong enough to protect their mother. Edward knows that his mother was suffering when their father had left them. He sees through his mother’s fake smile. Edward and Alphonse wanted to see their mother alive and smiling again which is the reason why the committed Human Transmutation, an alchemical process which resurrects the dead. To be honest, this is also the reason why Edward is angry at his father. He thinks that the reason why their mother suffered and died is because their father had left them.

The third burden that Edward keeps to himself is the death of Nina, a little girl who they were failed to save. Nina also became the reason why Edward and Alphonse continued with their journey about alchemy in the end because they want to be able to save people like Nina who was turned into a chimera, a creature composed of two or more different populations of genetically distinct cells. Nina was also one of the reasons for Edward’s character development. Which is more explained in Story 9.

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The fourth burden is the death of Maes Hughes. A fellow military officer who is close to the brothers and treats them as family. Edward and Alphonse shared their information about Lab 5 with Maes Hughes when they learned about Homunculus and the Transmutation circles inside the lab. Maes Hughes died because he was able to find secrets regarding with the information which Edward and Alphonse shared. Edward thinks that it was their fault that a person as nice as Maes died because of them.

.. My whole life’s been a lesson on regret.

– Edward Elric, Fullmetal Alchemist volume 20

It might be very painful, but these are the reasons why Edward became stronger and was able to overcome his weaknesses. This is also why Fullmetal Alchemist is an excellent series. You can’t attain happiness if you can’t overcome the pains in life. The author, Hiromu Arakawa, molded Edward into the perfect protagonist and hero by letting him experience these sufferings.