Robyn cheerfully laughs, lying on the bed in her cell and examining her fingernails.
"You should have seen the look on Joanna's face. I don't think she'd ever lost a fight before that. At least, not fair and square" Met with silence, Robyn sits up and looks over at Qrow and then Jacques, the latter of whom swats frantically as a fly buzzes around his face. Robyn looked at Fareeha who wasn't even moving, making her sigh "Tough crowd tonight. Guess Ironwood should have paid for better cell block entertainment" As she speaks, Robyn stands up and stretches, walking over toward Qrow's cell. Her comment earns a small chuckle from Qrow while he stares at Clover's pin "And he smiles. Did I win?".
"Hey, it's your game. I don't make the rules" Qrow said.
Robyn loses her cheerful demeanor "I'm sorry for what happened. It wasn't your fault".
"It was, though. I made a deal with the darkness, and he paid the price. It was all happening so fast, but Clover wouldn't let up. Could have worked together against Tyrian if Clover just... But the thing that really stings? For the first time in a while I thought, maybe, maybe I could be around somebody, anybody, without my Semblance making it… complicated. And now, it just feels like a childish dream. Gone... like everybody else" Qrow said in a self loathing tone.
Robyn sadly looks at her hand, listening to Qrow "Believe it or not, I know a little of what that's like" She walks over to the wall between her and Qrow's cells "When people are worried you're gonna sniff out their secrets, they tend to push you away. It makes a real connection… difficult".
She places her fingertips to the cell wall, the Hard-Light distorting in reaction to her touch. She then pulls her hand away and looks at it. Fareeha listened to what she said but didn't know what to say to that.
"I-" Qrow began before A small beep is heard, and the door to the chamber opens. Qrow looks over to the door, clutching Clover's pin to his chest, and continues speaking as Atlas soldiers bring Watts back to his cell, accompanied by Elm, Marrow and Harriet "Never thought of it that way".
The soldiers toss Watts to the floor, and Harriet stands next to Qrow's cell with her arms crossed "You don't get to keep that.
"I didn't kill him" Qrow said in frustration.
"You keep saying that, but it was your weapon covered in his blood" Harrit said coldly.
Qrow lowers his head and sighs. Robyn speaks up, drawing Harriet's attention "If you really wanna know what happened, mohawk, why not open this cell and take my hand?".
Harriet scoffs and starts walking over to Robyn's cell, while Marrow locks Watts' cell "If I open this cell, it won't be to shake hands".
Marrow looks over to Harriet, a worried frown appearing on his face, while Robyn puts her hands on her hips "Yeah, because you don't care about the truth. You just want someone to be mad at. Easier than taking an honest look at what side you're on".
Harriet narrows her eyes and quietly growls in annoyance. There is a tense silence as Qrow watches the two and Harriet looks over at the security panel for Robyn's cell. Harriet looks at Robyn and shifts on her feet.
"Hare? What're you doing?" Marrow asked, worried about what his teammate might do.
Harriet looks at Robyn, then at Marrow, angered. She pushes past Marrow, storming out "Nothing".
Marrow watches Harriet leave, then looks at Robyn, who walks back over to her bed and lies down with her arms behind her head "Well, that was… almost exciting".
Fareeha had remained silent until someone walked up to her cell, she looked up and saw who it was "Elm...".
Elm looked at her for a moment before she spoke "Why?".
Fareeha blinked "Why what?".
"Why did you turn yourself in? After your little speech, after you fought me and my team. But after all that you just turned yourself in. Why? What was the point of all that?" Elm demanded.
Fareeha looked down "I don't owe you any explanation".
"BULLSHIT!" Elm shouted as she slammed her fist against the Hard-Light "I don't care what your little friends think, no one knows you better than I do! And I know for a fact you never do anything without a reason! So stop screwing around and tell me why you turned yourself in after everything that happened!".
"Fine! You want to know why I did it?!" Fareeha asked as she stood up from her bed "Because I chose to do it! I believed I deserved to be punished for what I did. But I couldn't make that decision for everyone else, and I couldn't just stand by and let you arrest them. That's why I did what I did".
Elm looked at her for a moment before she closed her eyes "So you did it to save your friends... But what then? You just abandoned them? Not only did you betray me, you betrayed Atlas, and you even betrayed your friends. Is there anyone left for you to betray?".
"I don't want to hear that from you! At least I made my own decisions! Unlike you who lets everyone make all the decisions for you! At this rate it wouldn't surprise me if you can't even go to the bathroom unless ordered to do so. Why is it so hard make your own choices? Do you let others make them for you because it allows you you to just blame them for all the horrible stuff you do?" Fareeha asked.
Elm clenched her fist "Say what you want about me. That I am just a mindless drone who only knows how to follow orders, and maybe I am. But if you think I don't feel anything, you're wrong. I feel no joy at all seeing you in here. In all my life as a Huntress, I've been through many battles and taken a lot of painful beatings. But nothing, and I mean nothing, has ever hurt me more than you have. I loved you like a little sister, and look at Winter, she helped raise you after your mother left. Is this how you thank us for everything we've done for you? Think what you want about me, at least I am not a back stabber! Unlike you who betrayed everyone you pretend to care about! Your mother would've been disgusted if she saw you now!".
Fareeha got wide eyes at that... and tears began running down her face "Get out...".
Elm's anger faded as she realized she might've said to much "Fareeha I-".
"GET OUT!" Fareeha screamed.
Elm wanted to say something but sighed and left the room. Fareeha sat back down on her bed, covering her eyes. Marrow still remained, and decided to try something risky.
"For what it's worth... I don't think your mother would think less of you" He said, expecting to be yelled at.
"Thanks..." Fareeha whispered.
Marrow sighed in relief of being sparred from Fareeha's anger. With that he finally left the room himself. Robyn looked at Fareeha. She wanted to tell her that she did good by telling Elm of. But she had a feeling this was a situation where praise would only make things worse.
Genji, Jaune, Yang and Ren drive their hover bikes across the tundra just outside Mantle, following The Hound, who still had Oscar, up into a rocky chasm. Genji was standing behind Yang on her bike as he didn't have one of his own, holding some shurikens.
"I can't get a clear shot!" He said.
"It's going to lose us in these mountains! We can't keep up!" Jaune shouts.
Ren's bike starts shaking, and he looks at the frost-covered display, to find its engine is losing integrity "I don't know how much longer these bikes can stand the cold".
"I'm really wishing one of us could fly right now" Yang said.
Genji cursed under his breath. Fareeha's armor and semblance would've been really useful right about now.
"Wait, hold on!" Jaune deploys his shield on his arm and hits the brakes on his bike, moving back to drive parallel with Ren "Ren, going to get you up there".
Jaune lifts his shield up, and Ren leaps from his hoverbike to land on Jaune's shield. Jaune charges the Gravity Dust in his shield and blasts Ren toward The Hound. As he flies through the air, Ren launches one of StormFlower's blade cables and wraps it around The Hound's hind leg.
"Nice!" Yang high fives Jaune, causing Jaune to briefly lose balance on his bike. The Hound begins flying more erratically, slamming Ren against cliffs "Okay, not as nice".
"He's slowing him down. Hold on, Ren!" Jaune said.
"I don't have much of a choice!" Ren shoots his other blade cable, wrapping it around a boulder to further slow The Hound. However, The Hound suddenly pulls up, causing the cable to come loose from the boulder, with the blade zipping past Genji, Yang and Jaune.
The Hound slams Ren onto the ground and against pillars, continuing on its way through the chasm. Yang spots an incline to her left and drives up it onto a cliff parallel to The Hound, where she begins shooting it in the head. The Hound lowers Oscar Pine from its mouth into its hands and flies faster, leaving Yang confused. The Hound then lets out a loud roar, and the earth begins trembling before a horde of Centinels emerge from the ground, cliffs and archways.
"Did it just call for backup?" Yang asked.
"This thing is really starting to annoy me!" Genji said as he throws some shurikens in to several grimms' heads.
A Teryx swoops at Yang, who leans away and drives over an arch. Down below, Jaune slashes Centinels in half as he passes them while a flock of Teryxes flies behind him. Ren continues to hold onto StormFlower's cable, which has been detached from the gun. He watches what is happening on the ground, then looks up at The Hound, seeing Oscar pale and unconscious in its arms. Ren holsters his second gun and begins pulling himself along the cable toward The Hound.
A Centinel spits acid onto the engine of Jaune's hoverbike. As she zips across a stone arch above, Yang calls out to him "Jaune!".
A pair of Centinels twist around each other, heading straight for Jaune from behind. He sheathes his sword and leaps from his bike, then uses his shield's Gravity blast to bounce off a Centinel's head onto a stone arch. He tucks, rolls and teeters on the opposite edge before Yang drives by and Genji quickly grabs him, swinging him onto the back of the bike and Jaune had to hold on to his shoulder to avoid falling of.
Yang drives off the arch and onto a cliff, where a group of Centinels burrow up from the ground ahead of her and Genji. She accelerates and expertly dodges past them, only for a Teryx to land up ahead. Jaune pulls out a shield device and activates and tosses it. The device bumps into a boulder before deploying its Hard-Light shield, and Yang rams the shield with her bike, causing it to lean against the boulder and form a ramp. The bike is sent flying over the Teryx's head before it can stop them. There are two Centinels behind the Teryx, and Yang fires Ember Celica just before landing, sending the bike into a spin and hitting one of the Centinels with the engine. Before she can regain control, the bike slams into a rock. The engine begins smoking, and a tank on the side of the bike begins leaking a glowing purple material.
Yang continues driving, dodging and speeding past Grimm on her way out of the chasm, Genji used his sword to cut down several grimm that got to close to them. They sigh in relief, but when they look in front of them, their eyes widen with the realization that they are driving straight toward a sheer cliff. Yang turns the bike, and it topples over, sending her, Genji, Jaune and the bike tumbling along the ground. The bike slams into a boulder, while Yang and Jaune continue rolling toward the cliff. In an attempt to prevent their fall, Jaune stabs his sword into the ground while holding onto Yang's hand, but it didn't slow them down. Genji dives across the snowy ground and grabs Jaune's arm just as all three of them goes over the ledge. Genji tried to hold on to the ledge, but the rock he grabbed broke of, causing them to fall.
Ren suddenly appears in the air above them, firing StormFlower's cables. One cable wraps around Jaune's sword, and the other wraps around Genji's arm. A Teryx flies toward Ren, but he activates his Semblance, hiding himself and the others. The Teryx passes by harmlessly. An army of Centinels and Teryxes arrive at the top of the cliff, only to turn and leave when they fail to sense anyone. Once it is safe, Ren deactivates his Semblance and looks into the distance to see The Hound flying toward the massive whale grimm in the distance.
"No... Damn it!" Genji said in frustration. They had failed.
Weiss knocks heavily on the front doors of the Schnee manor, and soon after, the double doors are opened by Whitley, who looks upon Weiss and her friends in surprise. Ruby is standing with her, Blake is holding the still unconscious Nora, Hana was next to Weiss and May is watch behind them.
Whitley had an annoyed look "Oh, you've picked a fine time to-".
Weiss interrupts by pointing Myrtenaster at him, and he looks at the blade in fright "Not. Another. Word. We're coming in".
Whitley steps aside and groans as Ruby's group walks into the manor "Things are already bad enough after what you did to father, now you want us to harbor fugitives too? Our family has a reputation".
He crosses his arms in annoyance. Blake, having set Nora down on the floor, looks at him "That's what you're worried about? Your reputation?".
"I'm just saying that we've already lost all the house staff, and mother locked herself in her room" Whitley said.
Weiss glared at him "Maybe you haven't figured out what's going on, Whitley, but we're busy trying to save Atlas".
Ruby steps between the two "Look, our friend is hurt. We just need a place to lay low while she rests, and then we'll be out of your way".
Whitley looked at her before he finally gave in "Fine. What do you expect me to do, then?".
Weiss points to the staircase behind her "Go to your room. There is a brief pause, and Whitley sighs and follows her command. Weiss sighs as well "This way".
Weiss walks away, and May lifts Nora and follows her. While Weiss and May exit the room, Blake walks over to Ruby, who is staring outside through the front doors.
"Ruby?" She spoke in a worried tone
"I hope everyone's doing alright" Ruby said.
"If you are worrying about Lena, there is no need. She is perfectly safe with Penny and the others" Hana assured.
"I am worried about her. But I know she is safe. That's not what's bothering me" Ruby said.
"If you're worried about Yang, you could always try calling her" Blake suggested.
"That's the thing. I did" Ruby turns and shows Blake and Hana her Scroll which is actively calling Yang's Scroll.
But Yang wasn't answering... either Yang was still mad and didn't want to talk... or something has happened.
In the mountainous tundra, Yang and Genji gathers up nuts and bolts while Ren does nothing and Jaune waves his Scroll in the air in search of a signal.
"I repeat, if anybody can hear me..." Jaune looks over at the crashed hoverbike, which has a trail of the leaked purple material in the snow leading to the damaged tank "We need transport back to Mantle".
Some time later, the four are trekking through the tundra, with Ren leading and Jaune pushing the hoverbike. The sun is beginning to set, and it is snowing. Yang is using her Scroll to keep an eye on their Aura levels. All their auras were low, and it kept shrinking. At this rate they wouldn't last the night out here.
"We need to get out of this weather before the cold drops our Auras completely. How much farther to the outpost?" Yang asked Ren, who had an angry expression and remains silent "Ren, how much-".
"I don't know" Ren answered sharply.
Yang looks back at Jaune, who shrugs. She catches up with Ren "I thought you said you saw it when you were up in the air".
"I did, before I had to cut myself loose to help you guys" Ren said, his tone not changing.
Yang uncomfortably brings her hand to the back of her head, then lowers it as she speaks "Yeah, you've brought that up a couple times now. Something you need to say?".
"Not really. Wouldn't want to waste any more time" Ren walks ahead, while Yang stops with a small gasp. Annoyed, she catches up with him again.
"Hey! What is your deal?" She asked as she steps in front of Ren, stopping him.
"Don't worry about it" Ren said, losing more and more patience by the moment.
"Well, I'm sorry things aren't going smoothly enough for you" Yang said.
Jaune stops "Guys-".
"They're not going smoothly at all" Ren said.
"I hate to break it to you, but that's part of being a Huntsman" Yang said.
"Are you kidding?! We don't know the first thing about being Huntsmen. We clearly weren't ready" Ren said, finally losing his calm nature and was getting more angry.
Jaune takes a couple steps toward them "Guys, stop it".
"Were we not ready when we saved Haven? When we took down a Leviathan? We got the Lamp to Atlas" Yang reminded.
"And then we lost it! And after that, when we had to make real decisions, we got every single one wrong" Ren shot back.
"I'm not going to pretend like we did everything perfectly, but if we'd done nothing, things would be even worse than they are now" Yang said.
"How could they possibly be worse? We are stuck out here while Salem has the Lamp and Oscar. We've got no plan, no army" Ren said.
"We've got the Maiden" Yang said, despite the argument she had with Lena, most of what she said was just her anger speaking. She knew Lena was a great asset to them.
Ren walks away from Yang, in the direction of the City of Atlas, gesturing to it as he speaks "And by keeping her from opening the Vault for Ironwood, we're just trapping the whole city for Salem. People are going to die. Because of us".
"So what, we should just give Ironwood what he wants? Abandon Mantle? You think Atlas is still gonna be able to float to safety now that she's here?" Yang asked.
Ren turns to Yang, throwing his fists down in frustration, and then walks back toward her as he speaks "I don't know. But these aren't the kinds of decisions we should be making because we have no idea what we're doing".
"Okay, both of you. Cut it out" Jaune said.
Ren walks toward Yang, getting in her face "I'm just saying what nobody else wants to. We're in way over our heads, Ruby is barely more than a kid, I'm just an orphan from the middle of nowhere-".
Jaune tried to speak again "Ren, I-".
Ren turns to Jaune "You cheated your way into Beacon!".
Yang's eyes widen, and her mouth drops open. They stand in silence for a few moments, until Ren relaxes his shoulders and gains a regretful expression. There was a silence until the last member of the group finally spoke
"That's it... I stood here silent while you all went on and on. But that stops now" Genji said, his voice cold as ice. He walked over to Yang and Ren "In case you two have forgotten. The sun is going down, and if we waste any more time out here we will die. So from now on, all effort will be focused on finding the outpost and getting out of the cold. But until then I don't want to hear as much as a whisper from any of you".
He then looks at Ren before suddenly grabbing him, making Yang and Jaune gasp.
"That goes triple for you! I don't know what the hell has gotten in to you Ren, but you better get your act together or you are just going to lose what little you still have! I really miss the time when you didn't talk!" Genji said before he roughly pushed Ren away and walked of.
Everyone remained silent before Jaune sighed and continued pushing the bike. Yang glares at Ren before following the others while Ren clenches his fists.
Back at the Monstra, Cinder is walking through another hallway, after having had a tense talk with Salem. Neo was following her with a "Seriously?" gesture.
"I know what she said. I just wanna check on something. We'll be back before anyone realizes" Cinder begins descending an incline toward the docking bay. Neo, looking unconvinced, uses her umbrella to float down, putting her hand on her hip as she passes Cinder "I wanna see if anything is still going on at Amity Colosseum".
When Neo reaches the wing of the airship she and Cinder arrived on, she tiptoes across it and then drops down to sit on it with one leg crossed over the other.
"Salem doesn't know those children like I do. They wouldn't just abandon their misguided attempt to save the world" Cinder stands at the edge of the dock, then turns to look at Neo, who looks away. Cinder growls in frustration.
Suddenly, Emerald's voice is heard, surprising both of them "If she doesn't want to, I'll come" Neo looks at Emerald with her eyes narrowed, and Emerald walks forward "I've been working on my Semblance. I can help. I won't tell anybody".
There is silence for a moment, as Cinder thinks it over and lets out a frustrated sigh "How much did you overhear?".
"We heard enough" Everyone looked and saw Satya "If you're going, I am coming with you. And you can't stop me".
Cinder looks at her before she smiles "I never could stop you. Alright, you can come along too. Do a good job and I will reward you".
Satya blushed, but had a feeling things would not be that simple.
Night has begun, and there is heavy snowfall over the Mantle tundra. Inside an abandoned outpost, Jaune hits a furnace until it lights up. Ren is staring out of a window with his arms crossed.
Jaune sighs "You're right, Ren. I… I did cheat my way into Beacon" As he speaks, Jaune stands up and walks over to Ren, standing beside him "And I'm glad that I had people around me to help me see that I was bigger than that mistake. You've got people around you, too. You don't have to force yourself to be strong. The more you hide from what you're feeling, the more alone you're going to feel. Trust me".
Ren glances at Jaune, then uncrosses his arms and walks out of the small building, shoving the door open. Yang and Genji is standing by the door, having just returned, Yang sadly watches Ren leave while Genji refused to even look at him. Yang holds up a purple canister.
"If anyone cares, I found a part to fix the bike. So, yay. Good news" She walks over to a workbench, and Jaune turns back to the window to watch Ren sit down beneath a lamp post "For what it's worth, I'm sorry he said that to you. I know you've had to work hard to get here, Jaune".
"We're all under a lot of stress right now. I used to push people away too" Jaune said.
"He's right... sometimes we all have trouble letting people in" Genji said as he leans against the wall
Yang turns to the workbench and begins using a wrench to put the canister inside a piece of the hoverbike. After a bit, she pauses "Do you… think she thinks less of me… for what I did?".
"Ruby is your sister, she's always going to love you even if you disagree with each other" Jaune assured.
"Yeah. Ruby…" Yang resumes fixing the bike part.
Genji looked at her "You where asking about Fareeha weren't you?".
Yang stops working "Yes what I did... I broke my promise to her. I'm afraid of what my choice has also done to her...Lena was right if I loved her as much as I said I did I would not have kept such a big secret from her. I didn't tell her because I believed it would make her mad... but by not telling her, I broke her trust instead, which is even worse".
Genji puts a hand on Yangs shoulder "Yang we all makes mistakes and Fareeha still loves you. She is just hurt. But she is to stubborn to hate you. We all make mistakes in a relationship. No relationship is perfect, they all have their flaws. I should know, I made a lot of mistakes. But me and Blake still love each other despite all that... I just hope she don't think I am still mad at her for whole Robyn situation. Yes I was mad at the moment, but I forgave her for that pretty quickly".
"Thank you Genji... you may make mistakes but you always do your best to fix them" Yang said.
Genji sighs as he removes his hand "Thanks. But I think I've made far to many".
Jaune looks at him "Genji, if you need to get something of your chest, we will listen".
Genji was silent for a moment before he sat down "I meant what I said before we split up. I am a horrible leader. I was suspicious of Cinder and her group from the start, but I didn't act on it. If I had, maybe I could've prevented the fall of Beacon. After I was saved from dying, I wasn't grateful, I just ran away and joined Raven's tribe. I became a bandit! And when the Lamp revealed the truth, I couldn't comfort my team, instead I just snapped at them, and made a bad situation even worse. And let's not forget I spared Adam Taurus, despite knowing all the things he could do!".
"Genji..." Yang whispered.
"And that leads us to our current situation. I failed to keep my team together, and now one of them are in prison, and I couldn't even be bothered to lead what remained... It feels like I did everything wrong" Genji said as he looked down.
There was a silence before Jaune put a hand on Genji's shoulder "For what it's worth, from one leader to another, I still think you did a solid job, despite everything. And things would've been even worse if you weren't here".
"He's right Genji. You did your best, and that's all anyone can ask from you" Yang said.
Genji managed a small smile "Thank you...".
Jaune sighs and lies down in one of the bunk beds "I need to get some sleep, but I can't stop thinking about Oscar".
Yang puts the wrench down and walks over to the window "Go on. I'll make sure Ren doesn't brood himself to death out in the cold".
"I will keep watch" Genji said.
"Thanks. I just have a bad feeling. Things always seem to get worse before they get better" Jaune said.
Down the hill from the outpost and a fair distance away, the ground has begun cracking and noises can be heard beneath it. Suddenly, the cracks lengthen and then expand.