Radeon dodged the foot of the dark CPU, jumping up to slam it in the chest. Unblinking, the dark CPU grabbed Radeon and threw her into the side of a building. The red GPU's fortitude wavered, falling to the ground as she panted to recover her breath.
"Sorry monster, it's your day to die." She told it calmly, feeling the power of her shares aid her to transform into her CORE mode. A stream of crimson light enveloped her, leaving Radeon in her true form as it dissipated - but with her metallic arm on backwards. The dark CPU looked at her, and then the arm in question.
"I heard that your tech was unreliable... but that's laughable." It snorted, its voice echoing around the town square.
"This is Kuma talking now, and you know what? FUCK YOU!"
Her metallic arm burst into flame, rocketing her forward into the CPU, causing it to slide backward, tearing up bits of pavement and cement as she pushed the monster. "How do you like this 'unreliable tech' now, asshole?!"
"I like it fine. And since we're giving each other names, I'm a dark CPU, come to destroy all of you GPUs!"
An overwhelming sense of dread took over Kuma, putting her into a trance like state of fear and horror as she meteored to the ground, paralyzed.
"I won't... give up that easily!"
She got up woozily, correcting the placement of her arm and lobbing a swing at her enemy. The CPU easily dodged it, laughing at her attempt.
"What a pathetic piece of trash. You really think you can defeat me and my sisters?" It asked, pinning her to the ground, painfully. Kuma smirked, laughing back at the face of evil.
"I don't need to, I've got plans set in motion! Something actually more intelligent than you'll ever do in your entire life!"
As if to prove her point, a streak of white shot across the sky, disappearing quickly before the CPU growled. "You imbecile! I'll crush you along with the others."
And with that, Kuma died.
After the incident with Cinder at the tower, I started seeing things. These... visions. The first one was nice, it had these three girls all playing together at the beach, they were happy and content. There was no death or destruction in that one, but they just stopped being nice one night while we were on the way to Mistral, all I saw over and over again was that red haired woman dying, or the other two— the green and blue haired. They all died to these gigantic monsters, not grimm, but something far worse than I'd ever seen, even accounting for the dragon grimm that we kinda fought at the tower.
I looked over at Jaune as we lay on the forest floor. It'd been slow going, we'd been waiting for a ship sailing to Mistral to sail, but with all the problems in Vale close to all transport had been shut off. Weiss' bullhead with her dad was the only flight that had left Vale in over a week according to Jaune, but luckily there had been a steady flow of ships which is why I still had hope for it.
Swimming across water infested with grimm is not the best idea, especially in winter.
"Hey, you awake Ruby?" Jaune asked me, not moving an inch from where he was laying.
"Yeah. You too?"
He nodded, and I moved over the quietly snoring Nora and Ren to sit next to him.
"Do you miss Pyrrha?"
I wasn't sure initially if he'd heard me over Nora's sleeping, but he eventually replied, 'Yes' quietly. Pyrrha's death was something I'd never expected. She was the best out of all of us, this amazing warrior who was unbeatable. Penny wasn't even close to beating her in the match—
And all I could think about was Penny. I'm a little sad to say I didn't know Pyrrha all that well, I mostly talked with Jaune out of their team and she was always training. Just the memory of Penny's death made me sad. If I was just a little faster, I could've warned her. Pyrrha too, I could've stopped Cinder from killing her if I'd just been a little tiny bit earlier there.
But there was nothing I could do about it, so I wanted to press forward to Mistral. Then... I might be able to make sure that no one else died.
I was about to talk to Jaune a little more, just to see if I could maybe forget about everything and fall asleep, but after a small poke he was well on his way to dreamland, hopefully something nice. I could see how much Pyrrha's death affected him, and prayed that he didn't have the same nightmares that came to me.
With nothing else to do, I just crawled back over to my sleeping bag, and went to my own sleepland.
Unfortunately, I wasn't as lucky as Jaune and as soon I was asleep, I started to have the nightmares. This one was slightly different, showing the scene of the massive monster, but this time it was in front of a giant gate that was pulsing this weird black and purple stuff. It sniffed the air just like Zwei did, turning to face me as I somehow floated above it.
"Your world is mine for the taking, thank you for that signal. I couldn't have done it without you. That little power of yours is quite something. Shame that you won't live long enough to see it at full effect. Goodbye."
And with that, it swiped at me, and I was sitting up straight in the early morning light. Dreams really can pass time quickly, but that was just ridiculous. I mean it hadn't exactly been close to midnight when I woke up, but it was still pretty strange how fast the time felt. Something felt off too, there was a little voice telling me to turn back, to train and Signal to become stronger. I didn't know what to do.
On the one hand, we needed to go to Mistral, but on the other, the dreams... they were so real that I could almost reach out and touch them. They were more like 'visions' than dreams, crazy as that might sound. Was I just going crazy? I'd been under a lot of stress, and with Pyrrha and Penny's death it was possible that I had PTSD or something. It wasn't exactly uncommon for hunters that lost one of their friends to break down, my Uncle Qrow and Dad being two wonderful examples for that.
So maybe I was going crazy. I had to at least make sure that Dad and Yang were doing okay. Yeah, that was a good reason too. I wasn't just going because I had some voice telling me to go home and get stronger, I was also doing it because I felt that there was something wrong at home. Yeah, definitely it. We weren't that far anyway, so it wasn't a big loss. And if it turned out that nothing was wrong, we could just keep going, right?
Nodding to myself, I prepared myself to explain to the others what I planned.