Okay before I even start writing this chapter I really have to ask…
Why on earth would you guys think Penny heard Aigis's voice? I haven't built a reputation for being that random have I? I don't think I have.
Anyway sorry this took so long to write come out, I have no excuse really for this delay so all I can say is… It is time.
"So tired…" Ruby groaned as she opened the door to her new teams dorm, she was exhausted from the initiation.
"Where did Penny go?" Yang groaned.
"She asked Ozpin if she could put up some advertisements for her family's cafe." Weiss reminded, "And Ozpin is giving us tomorrow off from school due to both the recent appearance of the Phantom Thieves, and because of those giant Grimm we had to fight."
"Good." Blake muttered as she set her bags down and tumbled on to her bed, "But someone will need to remind our leader in the morning." She added hiking a thumb to Ruby, who had fallen face first onto her bed and was already snoring.
"You have got to be kidding me." Weiss groaned as Penny walked into the room.
"Don't be too hard on her Weiss." Penny said as she set her bags down, "Ruby is younger than us, not to mention her Semblance is one that really drains her energy, considering it is super speed."
"Fine." Weiss admitted turning to the next bed, only to pause, "We only have four beds."
Penny was not concerned, "I will unpack my sleeping bag then." She said happily, doing just that and was soon making herself comfortable on the floor without complaint.
[Persona 5: Aria of the soul]
Ruby woke up to the sound of an airship's engines humming, combined with the music of a piano and a woman singing.
"Huh?" Ruby muttered looking around the place, finding that she was in a velvet blue room that looked like the first class seats of an airship. One wall even had a bar with shelves of drinks behind it.
"Welcome Miss Rose, to the Velvet Room." A voice familiar to Ruby said, causing her to snap to the middle of the room, seated across from her, with a table between the two, was Igor.
"Igor?" Ruby asked tilting her head, "Why am I here? Where is here? How did I get here?"
"Do not worry." Igor said calmly, "You're still fast asleep in your bed back in the real world. This place exists between dreams and reality, mind and matter. It is a room that only those bound by a contract may enter."
"A contract?" Ruby asked, "I don't recall signing a contract."
"Perhaps not a written contract." Igor said, "Previous guests have entered bound by a simple promise."
Ruby furrowed her brow thinking, then realized that her contract was one of an unspoken contract, "As a team leader it is my responsibility to help them make it through Beacon." She muttered.
"An unspoken contract, but a contract all the same." Igor said, "Henceforth, you shall be welcome as a Guest of the Velvet Room."
"Ooookay?" Ruby said confused, "That's… Nice?"
Igor chuckled, "Indeed. And soon you will have need of the Velvet Room, like the Guests before you. The Messiah, The Seeker of Truth, and the Trickster." Igor said, "Do you remember the Fortune I gave you?"
Ruby nodded, "That something big was going to happen and I would be a symbol of hope. Right?" Ruby asked.
"Close enough." Igor admitted, "But for now the Velvet Room holds no purpose to you, but soon what we can help with will become clear. For now, our time is almost up, the next time you visit will be when the Velvet Room can help you."
At that moment a door behind Igor opened up, revealing a man with white hair and golden yellow eyes wearing a blue outfit that reminded Ruby of a bellhop, tucked under his arm was a large book.
"Master Igor, I've finished up the- Ah, hello there." The man said noticing Ruby, whose vision was fading "Allow me to introduce myself, my name is-"
Ruby didn't catch the last of his name before her world went dark.
Ruby's eye groggily opened as she slowly pushed herself up on the bed… Only to immediately and suddenly be splashed by water.
"AAAHH! COLD!" Ruby shouted flying out of the bed.
"Oh shoot, sorry Ruby." Yang said, quickly dropping the bucket, "You woke up and I was already committed to the motion."
"Why would you splash me with a bucket of ice cold water!?" Ruby cried out.
"You weren't waking up." Penny pointed out as she grabbed the wet sheet from Ruby's bed, as well as the mattress itself, "Weiss and Blake both tried to shake you awake, and Yang even tried a whistle and putting a cookie under your nose." Penny paused, "I don't understand that last one though. Shouldn't a cookie be given to people who are already awake?"
"Hey." Yang said holding her hands up in defense, "When Ruby doesn't react to a chocolate chip cookie, that's something to be worried about."
Ruby paused, and making liberal use of her Semblance, vibrated her body fast enough to shake all the water off her clothes, "Where's the cookie?" Ruby demanded.
She was met by the sound of something wet hitting the ground, Ruby turned and was devastated by what she saw.
A soggy, ruined, chocolate chip cookie.
"NOOOOOOOOO!" Ruby cried out in exaggerated despair.
Weiss looked at this scene in horror, 'This is my team leader?' Weiss thought horrified, 'I'm never going to graduate. I'm going to be held back year after year because my team leader is an immature brat.'
"It's okay Ruby." Penny said, "We can head to LeBlanc's for breakfast. Ozpin did say we don't have classes today."
"Um… We have a cafeteria." Blake pointed out.
"Nonsense." Penny said grinning like a fool, "LeBlanc's offers much healthier food than the school cafeteria."
"Yes, please." Weiss groaned.
"That sounds like a good idea but…" Ruby said scratching her head, "The rise in Dust Prices kinda… blew a hole in the budget my Dad sends me for my allowance… And, new parts for Crescent Rose."
"Ruby…" Yang groaned.
"Don't worry." Penny said smiling, "Mister Kurusu said that the first time I bring my team to the Cafe will be on the house, as a reward for me passing initiation."
The rest of the team blinked at what Penny said, and no human or Faunus can resist free food.
"Let's go." The four other girls said.
Four out of five members of Team RWBYS stared at the coffee mugs they had ordered in surprise.
"I…" Weiss said putting her empty mug down, "I don't think I can enjoy any other coffee ever again."
"Same." Blake said.
"Agreed." Yang said as she took another sip before biting into her bagel.
"Awww." Ruby pouted, "I wanna keep coming here but I can't afford to keep doing so. Plus there are so many things I want to get for Crescent Rose but with Dust Prices going up I can't."
"Not the fault of the SDC Ruby." Weiss said with a slight glare, "Due to most of our shipment in Vale getting stolen we have to raise the price of what manages to get here."
"I know!" Ruby cried out, "Dad gave me the whole economics lesson when prices first started going up." Her head then fell on the table, causing the plates and mugs on the table to tremble briefly.
It was then Akira walked up to the five, "So then, how have you five been enjoying your morning?" Akira asked as he gathered up the empty plates and mugs.
"Very nice Mister Kurusu." Weiss said, "However I feel that it would have been better if our team leader didn't oversleep."
"I'm sorry. I was having a really weird dream and I just couldn't wake up." Ruby pouted, "Which is kinda weird since I think it was a lucid dream."
"What was it about?" Blake asked, curious about what Ruby found so weird about her dream.
"Well…" Ruby said sitting up, "I was in an airship, kinda like the ones we took to Beacon and back, but the only people on board were me and that guy from Patch's end of the year Fair."
Yang raised an eyebrow, "You mean that old man with the stupidly long nose?"
"Yeah, his name was Igor." Ruby said, no one noticing Akira suddenly paying more attention to their conversation, "Anyway he said that I was a guest in some place called The Velvet Room."
Akira looked at Ruby with interest, though no one noticed it, 'Igor, Velvet Room.' Akira noted, 'So this girl is a Wildcard. But she doesn't seem to know what's going on, so her Persona still isn't awakened.'
Akira pulled out his Scroll and opened the group chat.
Akira: Everyone, I think a potential Wildcard just stumbled into the cafe.
Ryuji: You serious!?
Akira: I am, a girl named Ruby Rose dropped both Igor's name and the Velvet Room.
Makoto: Does that mean they're Persona users?
Futaba: Nope. The only ones in the building with an active Persona are Akira, Morgana, Haru, and myself.
Yusuke: So we can confirm Ruby has a Persona, but not awakened to it. What should we do?
Akira: Futaba, do you think you can hack their Scrolls?
Futaba: I'm already browsing Ruby's search history.
Akira: Okay, Futaba I want you to keep track of if Ruby gains a Metaverse app, and if she does, try to keep it from activating. They may be a team but from what I'm seeing they aren't coordinated just yet.
Ann: We weren't coordinated when we first joined up you know.
Akira: True but I don't think we ever had to deal with one of our teammates actively looking like they wanted to beat the tar out of us- Akechi notwithstanding.
Ann: Point taken.
Akira: For now, just keep the App from dragging them somewhere, I'll ask Penny to give us check-ins on their team dynamic. We'll go from there.
Haru: Good, now can you please get back to work Akira, they haven't noticed you texting yet and it seems our customers are considering on ordering something else.
Akira smirked and put his Scroll away and turned back to the only customers in the Cafe at the moment and smiled.
He may like being a Phantom Thief, but he also enjoyed the happiness he brings to others from honest work.
It was then Morgana hopped up next to Akira in his cat form, "I got the name of that… Guy…" Morgana trailed off as he looked toward Team RWBYS, "Ah… Maybe later then?"
"Agreed." Akira said in japanese, "The one with the red hood, made a visit to the Velvet Room last night it seems."
"Really?" Morgana asked, surprised.
"Really." Akira said, "Why don't you go over there and see what you can pick up, oh and tell Penny that I would like it if she were to tell me everyday how her team is getting along with each other."
"Sure thing." Morgana said, perhaps just a little too quickly in Akira's mind as the cat hopped off the table by Akira and then onto the table Team RWBYS sat.
"Morgana!" Penny and Weiss cheered.
"Aww… What a cute little kitty." Yang cooed as she pet Morgana, whom shook his head in an attempt to get Yang's hand off.
Naturally Yang was too stubborn to stop.
"I should have figured Mister Kurusu would have let Morgana run around this place." Weiss said as she pulled Morgana away from Yang and began petting him herself.
"Mister Kurusu said that he always felt a little bit calmer when petting a cat." Penny said smiling.
"I will admit petting Morgana is surprisingly calming." Weiss admitted.
"Penny." Morgana said, thankful that Penny was the only one capable of hearing him- After all she did hear him talk in his other form so that resulted in a change in cognition, "Akira wanted me to tell you that he wants you to keep him informed of how your team is getting along. He can already tell Weiss is ready to explode about Ruby."
Penny nodded ever so slightly, right as Ruby's head fell toward the table, "Ruby?" Penny asked.
"This suuuuuucks." Ruby groaned, "This is so good, but I'm broke…"
Akira couldn't help but chuckle, "Well I could always use some extra help around here." Akira said, causing Ruby to perk up… Before immediately faceplanting.
"But I'm a student at Beacon, I can't really pull a work shift too often." Ruby pouted.
Akira smirked, "Knowing your status as a Student of Beacon I can't officially hire you, however if you do want to come around and help out I will be willing to pay you for your help."
"Really?" Ruby asked excitedly.
"Of course." Akira said as Ruby smiled, "But no employee discount."
"Aw…" Ruby groaned.
"Well… That was rather filling." Weiss said as Team RWBYS left LeBlanc's, "I never thought Curry for breakfast would be something I wouldn't mind."
"Same here." Yang said as a grin broke out on her face, "They totally need one of those huge portions challenges, like the Continental Pizza challenges, but for Curry."
"Yaaaang." Ruby whined, "You've tried for years and never finished the first pizza."
Penny tilted her head, "Continental Pizza Challenge?" Penny asked.
"It's a special offered by Orchid's Pizza." Yang said with a grin, "Usually just called the Continental Challenge. There are three sizes, Menagerie, Anima, and Remnant sized, costing five hundred, seven hundred, and one thousand Lien, in that order."
"And if you manage to eat the entire pizza within thirty minutes you not only get the pizza free, but you get a prize too… Though no one ever talks about the prize cause not too many people get past the Menagerie Pizza." Ruby said, admittedly unenthusiastically.
Weiss and Blake both looked at Ruby with raised eyebrows, "How often has Yang done this challenge?" Blake asked.
"About once a month for two years now." Ruby deadpanned, "She's never gotten more than a third of the way through it."
"Hey!" Yang cried out.
"Akira would probably be interested in hearing about it." Penny said as she pulled out her Scroll.
Yang grinned, "I bet I could complete the challenge before he could even finish the first stage of it." Yang said with a grin, "You gotta have a big stomach to handle that thing."
Ruby tilted her head, 'I feel like it'll take more than that, otherwise there would be a lot more people who could finish the challenge.' Ruby thought.
Penny's eyes went wide as Haru sent her a message back, a pair of images, "Are you sure about that?" Penny asked as she held out her scroll to Ruby, whose jaw dropped.
The picture was Akira inside a fast food restaurant, and on his plate was a hamburger… an unusually wide, but comically tall burger that looked to be almost as tall as him, as well as a timestamp. The next was Akira and the empty plate- With Akira looking no worse for wear and the time stamp saying that not even thirty minutes had passed.
"Absolutely." Yang said as Penny pulled the Scroll away from Ruby.
"Well… Good luck sis." Ruby said smiling, "You're gonna need it."
Yang simply pumped her arm and grinned, "Good thing I burn a lot of calories." Yang said.
Weiss groaned into her hands, "I'm teamed up with a maniac and a child." Weiss groaned.
"Weiss…" Ruby pouted, as she tried to think of something so that Weiss wouldn't be so upset with her.
"Hey." Blake said as she stopped, "My favorite bookstore is actually right here." Blake said hiking her thumb at a building, 'Tukson's Book Trade', "Mind if I see what they have?"
Ruby smiled, "That actually sounds like a good idea." Ruby said, "I think I might be able to afford a used book at the moment, hopefully they have something to help me lead a team."
"So you'd rather learn from a book than from me?" Weiss asked, slightly irritated.
"Well…" Ruby said poking her fingers together, "If people did publish something about being a leader of a team then that probably means they have had enough experience to feel comfortable writing out something about it shouldn't they?"
Weiss raised her finger and opened her mouth to counter it, only to find she really couldn't.
"Fine." Weiss admitted, "Maybe I'll find something there that I like as well."
Yang sighed, "I guess we're all heading in." Yang moaned.
"Come on Yang." Ruby said, grabbing her sister by the arm, "Maybe you can find something to help you expand your fighting style."
"Hey my fighting style is perfect enough as it is." Yang defended.
"There's no such thing as perfect Yang." Ruby said seriously, "Not even Crescent Rose is perfect yet. I will find a way to upgrade her."
Yang just rolled her eyes at Ruby's words and followed her in.
"Welcome to- Oh, it's nice to see you again Blake." The large man behind the counter said.
"I brought my team with me Tukson." Blake said as the rest of Team RWBYS walked in.
The now named Tukson looked at them, his gaze staying on Weiss a bit longer than the others, "I see. Just take care of where you leave your books lying around." Tukson said, causing Blake to turn red as both of them knew exactly what they were talking about.
"Got anything for martial arts?" Yang asked.
"Over here." Tukson said pointing at a stand to the side of the counter.
"Thanks." Yang said as she walked over to the stand, with Weiss and Penny going their separate ways.
Ruby however walked up to Tukson, "Do you have anything second hand?" Ruby asked, "I… Just became a Team Leader and I was hoping I could find something to help me learn how to, well, lead."
"There are leadership guides with the 'How To' books, but second hand I'm not too sure." Tukson said putting a hand to his chin, "Tell you what, leave me your Scroll Number and I'll call you if I find one, and if not I'll call you and let you know I'll put a copy of something on hold for you."
Ruby smiled and nodded, "Thank you." Ruby said smiling as she was handed a pen and paper.
"No problem." Tukson said smiling.
Ruby smiled and turned around, only for a book to fall off the counter as she did, "Oh, sorry." Ruby said, bending down to pick up the book and noticed the title, 'Hopes Hatchet.'
"My fault really." Tukson said, taking the book from Ruby, "Shouldn't have left it on the edge like that."
With that, Ruby nodded and went over to the weapon magazines, figuring she might be able to afford a magazine if nothing else.
"Hello and welcome to Orchid's Pizza, what would you like to order?" A young wolf faunus waitress asked as she looked at the man who arrived very recently. The stern expression on his face made her ear twitch in slight nervousness.
"I'd like to take the Continental Pizza Challenge." Akira said as he took his glasses off.
Welp, as I said before, I have no excuse as to why this took so long.
However I would like to state that I have a Twitter now, in which I will use to at least attempt to let people know what I update, as well as if I am playing a game online and would like to play it with you all (Assuming my internet is cooperative)
The name is Phoenix Champion ( PhoenixChampio6 (I wasn't aware I couldn't change this part so my nickname is stuck like that))
Anyway I'll see you all, hopefully a lot sooner.
And for those wondering about Team RWBYS Persona's… I will explain them when the time comes.