1. Miss Mustang

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It was a hot day. When I say this, I don't mean it as in "Oh, it's warm and we're a little sweaty." No. I mean it was hot as hell. The sun was pounding down, trying to fry all that lived beneath it, you could see the heat waves on the ground four feet in front of you, and you were desperately trying to stick to the shade at all times. No ifs, ands, or buts. It was hot. Period. Is my point getting through to you? Yes? Good, because this is the weather that assaulted Central City as the bell rang signaling the first period of the first day of school at Central High. It was hot as hell within the gates of the classrooms of hell. Now, I'm not saying that Central High is hellish and cruel; I'd never say that and mean it. No, I called it the classrooms of hell because Central High is one of the most strict schools in all of Amestris. To the students, the strict codes were evil and the no-nonsense teachers were often nerve wracking. Got the general idea? No? Let me put it this way; Olivier Armstrong went to school here. Understand now? Good!

As the bell rang, chattering students headed towards their class rooms excitedly, many of the freshmen who were excited for high school but had no idea what they were walking into. Amongst all the herds of the teenagers with headphones on and chewing gum as they wandered in random directions through the courtyard, one girl stood by the front gate, staying off to the side, keeping in the shadows. She sighed, readjusting the bag slung over her right shoulder and glanced at the white paper in her left hand that showed her schedule. She glanced at her first period class and the map of campus she had and tried to make her way there, hoping to keep to the side and away from the others. 'Have a good first day, Ái. You'll be fine. I'll pick you up by the South Entrance at 3:00, alright?' Her mother's voice echoed in her head as she timidly made her way through the crowd, trying not to touch the people around her. Ái carefully weaved through the crowd and cut off into a gap between the B and C buildings and walked there, away from the crowd, circling the back of the buildings to reach the C building. She timidly rejoined the crowd to enter the chilly hallway to get to C-8, her first class of the day. It was a smaller class, only thirty kids, which helped her social anxieties as she walked in and took the free seat in the far back corner, keeping to herself and the wall and she pulled out a pen. She sat there fidgeting and jumped when a hand set itself on her shoulder. She glanced up and met a pair of soft blue eyes behind a pair of glasses tucked into thick black hair. The boy moved to the only open seat next to her and smiled at her.

"Hello Ái. Remember me? Luis Fuery?" He asked softly, noticing her timid air. She nodded with a small smile before looking back down at her lap, hands trembling a little. "That's right... You were always homeschooled... All these people must be a little overwhelming to be around... Hey, it's ok. I'm here for you. Well, in this class at least."

"...T-thanks... L-Luis..." she replied softly and he gave her a sweet smile. The teacher began the class and the two didn't say much to each other again until the bell rang. Luis got up and slung his bag over his shoulder as he helped Ái pack up. He felt bad because he knew how scared she was; he had stage fright. "Um, Luis?" she asked timidly as they began leaving the class room, the only students left. The teacher was eyeing her curiously.

"Yeah?"

"What lunch do you have?"

"First, why?"

"Mind if I sit with you? I don't know anyone here besides you.."

"Of course Ái. See you at lunch!" He said excitedly as he headed off to his next class, her following timidly until the teacher called her name. The teacher hadn't spoke to her directly all period but she was watching her and it made Ái uncomfortable.

"Miss Mustang, would you mind having a few words with me before you go to your brunch?" The woman asked kindly. Ái meekly nodded and came over to her desk, her jacket sleeves hanging over her hands because it was too big. "Ái was it? Ái Kasai Mustang. I wasn't sure when I saw your name on my roster, but seeing you now, I'm fairly sure that you are Roy's daughter. Am I correct?"

"Yes m'am." Ái replied softly, but a little less scared. Homeschooling had made it easier for her to talk to adult strangers but she hardly knew anyone her age or many people at all...

"You certainly look like him. I am honored to have been able to meet you, let alone be your teacher. It's not everyday that you get to meet the Fuhrer's daughter!" She replied in a jaunty fashion. Ái gave a soft smile and shoved her right hand into her pocket, rubbing the object that laid there in the warm fabric of her black fleece jacket. "Miss Mustang, please feel free to come talk to me about anything at anytime."

"Alright m'am. May I go now?" The teacher nodded and Ái headed for the door, pausing briefly to glance at the teacher. "Thank you Mrs. Juni." She walked out into the hall and into the courtyard that was no longer crowded as the students had already headed over to the lunch area for brunch as Ái walked to the next class room, sitting on the bench outside the door and grabbing her book to read. She always kept a book handy in places that she felt might give her problems with her social anxiety, it helps to calm her as she loses herself in it's story.

She didn't look up until she heard the bell ring, only to catch a glimpse of a redhead girl walking into the classroom.

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