Summary: Ed, Al, and Winry arrive in Rush Valley the “Boom Town of the Broken-down” that “Holy Land of Automail Mechanics” where the latest anything to do with automail is happening. After Winry had admired the various makes and models of automail on display for awhile, Ed gets rushed by several mechanics who want to get a good look at his automail limbs, afterwards he realizes that his silver pocket watch, his proof of being a state alchemist, has been stolen. The overly enthusiastic mechanics tell them that it was most likely Paninya’s who stole it and, and with a little prodding, tell Ed where he can most likely find her: on the top of a mountain where an automail mechanic named Dominic lives. On the way up they find her; after a chase and a scare from the concealed blades and cannon in her automail legs, Winry is the one to finally catch her just so she can examine the automail. Inside Dominic’s home, his son and his son’s pregnant wife greet them and Winry gets to look at Paniniya’s legs while Ed goes ignored until Dominic shows up. After examining Ed’s automail Dominic guess that the weight might be what’s stunting Ed’s growth prompting Ed to go into happy fantasies as Winry is flat out denied when requesting Dominic to take her on as an apprentice.
A storm blows in with heavy rain as Ed and Al find themselves feeling the pregnant belly of Saldia while pondering the mysteries of life. Meanwhile Paninya and Winry start talking about why Paninya wears automail; when she was little she lost both her parents and her legs in a train accednt leaving her with no relatives and deeply depressed until Dominic found her and took her home with him to outfit her with new legs. Every time she tries to repay Dominique he refuses her money and Winry surmises that it is because she steals it and so Paninya decides to give up pick pocketing starting with returning Ed’s watch which will not open. Winry sees that Ed sealed it shut using alchemy and uses her skills to open it believing there to be something embarrassing hidden within. After forcing it open there are only the words “Don’t forget 3. Oct. 11” etched into the inside cover, after seeing this Winry asks Paninya to return it to Ed and resolves to ask Dominic for an apprenticeship once more.
The storm continues with Ed telling Winry the baby is being born and Dominic racing off to the city to fetch a doctor. As Saldia goes into labor Winry takes charge of the birthing based off memory from the medical books she has read and Ed berates himself for always being powerless during important moments. The baby is delivered successfully and Winry can’t seem to find the strength to stand needing a piggy back ride from Ed; when she tells him that she saw what was in the watch, Ed promptly drops her on her rear. Ed never even showed Al what her wrote inside the watch as it stands as a personal reminder to him of the day they could no longer go back, the day they burned their house to the ground. Winry decides she has to get stronger as well so she can better support Ed and Al. When Paninya appears Ed hits her with his right hand for stealing his watch and then a second time with his left hand when she complains about being his with the automail arm. Dominc is back with the doctor and has a complete turn of character upon seeing his grandson; Saldia and her baby are both perfectly healthy and Dominic decides to introduce Winry to a skilled mechanic to train under. At the station Ed and Al are finally on the train to Dublith to see their master as Winry stays behind in Rush Valley.
Manga notes: (spoilers impending) … Three words: WAY. TOO. RUSHED. And now more words: going into all the differences would take for ever since there are far too many of them, basically this ep tried to cover chapters 17, 18 and up to page 27 of 19. It looks like anything that is not of any major significance that was animated in the first adaptation was not animated this time around (the arm wrestling contest in particular). The chase through the town that was chapter 17 trying to catch Paninya was changed to only a brief chase in the middle of nowhere, the bridge was supposed to be taken out by the storm making Ed and Al feel useless when they can’t make a new one, several minor conversations (most of the humor) was omitted along with any number of other things that could take up a whole page trying to go though. Personal pet peeve was the lack of Winry’s grandmother when younger in Dominic’s memory. Next ep looks just as rushed based on the episode listings. One perfect ep and now one hacked up ep… hopefully they’ll stop doing this when they get to the entirely never before been animated in any way parts of the story.