This oneshot is an alternative version of what occurs in the first chapter of the Fullmetal Alchemist manga. But instead of the events of the Elric Brothers going to Liore, this version takes place in the Desert Oasis Town of "Krowatol". Krowatol is a town that had never rained in years, and because of that there is a difficulty in food and water.
When I began reading this oneshot I thought I saw a Rose look-a-like character working in a restaurant in Krowatol with her father. Then I was surprised that it was indeed Rose! That was when I learned that this really is an alternative version and I should not take into account all the events that happened in Liore. So, Rose is also present in this alternate version, but this time she is not the same as in the Liore one. Every character in Liore version except Rose is not part of this alternative version. There is also a Father Cornello alternative character but instead of being a priest (or a fake priest, if you like) he is a military major heading the town of Krowatol. He also has a philosopher's stone but it seems that he doesn't know alchemy since he asked Ed's help to make him immortal by using the stone.
Since this is an alternative retelling of the first chapter, there are some scenes that are somewhat alike in the version in Liore and Krowatol, like the broken vase (like the broken radio in Liore version), people thinking that Alphonse is the Fullmetal Alchemist, Alphonse retelling their committing of human transmutation to Rose. I must say, I was a little bored reading the same events happening again, but that just makes it more of an alternative thing.
To be honest I only read this just to kill time, but really, I'm glad that I stumbled to this oneshot while browsing some of Hiromu Arakawa's published works. So yeah, I enjoyed this, and of course I still prefer the original version, but it's still a good read. So, if you're looking for a good oneshot to read, then read this one. And yes, new to FMA can still read this since it is only an alternative to chapter 1.