A Letter From Home

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With one hand, I shoveled scrambled eggs into my mouth, my other being used to hold the book I was reading open. I knew the librarian, Irma Pince, wouldn't be happy with me reading at the breakfast table, but I had spent the last week looking through the restricted section of the library for anything this world might have about alchemy, and I was just now getting to read about this new land.

Unfortunately, there wasn't much. Just as the old man had said, this world was governed by magic and magic alone. Yes, I had found out about the Sorcerer's Stone, otherwise known as the Philosopher's Stone, and I had a very heated discussion with Dumbledore about the topic. He had assured me that the stone had been destroyed and then there was no way anyone else was getting their hands on another one. It hadn't done much to assure me, but I would have to trust the headmaster and let it go for now. There was nothing about the man that made me think he would be untrustworthy.

Now, I was reading through Hogwarts: A History, trying to inform myself on the place I would be living and teaching in for the next ten months of my life. It was interesting to learn about the huge castle, but I had to admit, it was a slow read. With the castle being over 1000 years old, there was a lot to learn and a lot to get through. A few times, I had used it to fall asleep.

I jumped when there was suddenly something land smack dab in the middle of the book I was reading; I nearly fell out of my chair in surprise. Looking up from trying to stabilize myself in my chair, I found a thick letter lying on top of the book in front of me. It was addressed to me in Al's familiar scrawl.

"Got yer first letter there?" Hagrid asked from beside me. I smiled up at the man as I opened the letter with skilled hands.

"Yeah, from my little brother," I said. "Winry and Granny probably wrote, too," I added, looking down at the letter, finding my guess to be correct. As I unfolded the letter, I found Winry's and Granny's handwriting accompanying Al's.

"Ya close with you brother, I'm guessing?" he asked, his voice joyful as always.

"Yeah, I've pretty much been taking care of him since I was little, about five years old; my father left when we were young and my mother died from a sickness," I muttered under my breath, running a finger over the parchment beneath my fingers.

"Oh, I'm so sorry, lad," he said, patting me on the back, but with his size, it really felt more like a slap; it even caused me to pitch forward with the force. "How did you take care of him by yourself at that age?" he asked, looking genuinely interested. It was refreshing to hear someone talk to me like an adult and not like a child over something so important

"We've been friends with the Rockbell's, our neighbor's, since my parents were little; they were friend's with Wriny's parents. Granny took us in and treated us as her own," I said, a soft smile on my face. Yes, we had our times of butting heads and calling each other names, but I owed her my life and much more.

"Well, I'm glad to hear that, lad. So glad you had support." The large man looked thoughtful for a moment before he continued. "Edward, if you ever need anything, just let me know. Hell, let any of the others know as well. You're a part of the staff now, Ed," he said with a bright, cheery smile. A smile made its way across my face as I looked up at the man.

"Thank you. Hagrid. I appreciate it, really," I said genuinely. He only smiled that normal cherry smile before returning to his food. With a sigh, I brought the letter back out to read it, scrambling when a few photos fell from the envelope. I smiled when I picked them up.

On top, there was one of Al and I when we were just kids, our mother crouched down behind us with her arms wrapped around our shoulders, pulling us closely to her sides. The next was of Winry, Al, and I all together when we were still all going to school. I had to scoff at the next picture; it was one of Mustang and me when I had first received my certification. The picture was tense, Roy standing with his hand on my shoulder, as I, and I remembered it very clearly, tried not to scream at the man. Looking back on it now, I owed him my life as well, even if I would never admit it to his face. It was because of him that I even entered the military and subsequently got my brother's body back. There were so many people I would never be able to repay.

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