The only sound Ruby got in response was that of the nearby birds chirping. However, the lack of response was something the young teen had grown to expect from the grave in front of her.
Despite that though, talking aloud to her mother's gravestone had always offered some form of catharsis. It was almost like her mom was still there, looking out for her even now.
"There wouldn't happen to be anything you can tell me about Silver Eyes, would there?"
Ruby chuckled to herself quietly.
"It's so weird to think that I have some super eyes or something. Still, no one's been able to help me with them. Dad won't say much about it and uncle Qrow has been busy helping my friend, Pyrrha."
Thinking of Pyrrha made Ruby think of a certain someone else. Swallowing the lump in her throat, the young teen decided to see if her mom could help her with everything she had been feeling.
"It's been a really...difficult last couple weeks."
Unbidden, the tears began to fall.
"I...lost someone. He was like a brother to me." Trying in vain to wipe at the tears cascading down her face, the young Rose began to chuckle. "It's funny, he even looked like he could be related to dad and Yang. Always made it a little weird when Yang would tease him or flirt with him."
A gentle breeze blew through the cliffside, carrying with it a few of the recently fallen leaves that meant the coming of autumn.
"If you could do me a favor, if you happen to see him, can you look out for him? His name's Naruto Uzumaki. Blond, blue eyes, and he has some whisker marks on his cheeks like a fox. Probably already getting into trouble too. Thanks, mom."
"Admirable effort, but not good enough little sister."
Weiss Schnee huffed as she found herself staring down the gleaming edge of Winter's blade.
"I yield," the Schnee heiress relented.
In a smooth flow of motions, Winter sheathed her saber before helping her sibling up.
"You've made remarkable progress while you were away at Beacon. The Glyphs you designed alongside that Uzumaki boy have definitely helped to broaden your horizons and expand your arsenal."
Weiss puffed up in pride at hearing her normally hard to please sister praise her.
"However, you've been slouching on your swordplay and you're base Glyphs have stagnated. Not to mention your inability to properly summon."
And just like that, Winter easily destroyed any sort of pride she had just helped to build.
"As much as I'd like to continue to help you grow, General Ironwood recently gave me a long term mission so I'll be gone for an unknown amount of time."
Weiss deflated even further. While she wasn't as...vibrant as her teammates, Winter was far and away better company than their father or Whitely.
Seeing her younger sister visibly deflate, Winter's gaze softened. She knew how...difficult it was to live in the Schnee estate. Those difficulties were what had pushed her to forsake her spot as heiress and seek out a life in the Atlesian military, away from her own family.
Seeing a flash of blond behind her sister reminded Winter of a favor she had decided to cash in. Hopefully this would help save Weiss from the maddening effect that living with their family had.
Placing her hands on her sister's shoulders, Winter offered a small smile of reassurance.
"But, I managed to find someone to help you in my stead. Weiss, meet Jaune Arc."
Weiss turned to regard the shaggy haired teen with a look of confusion. Sure, she remembered talking to him at the dance all those months ago, but he had never made any mention of knowing her sister at all. She also knew next to nothing about his battle prowess aside from knowing that he used a sword and shield that he had apparently inherited from a relative.
"Weiss, good to see you again."
The Schnee heiress quirked a brow seeing the blond offer a small bow. To be fair to him, the other two blondes she knew lacked any sense of formality.
Still, it wouldn't do for her to not answer in kind.
Giving a quick curtsey, Weiss acknowledged the greeting with one of her own.
"You as well, Jaune."
Not having known the two knew each other, Winter looked at the two teens, her gaze silently asking to be filled in.
"While we were in Vale accompanying General Ironwood, Weiss and I were introduced through some...uh...mutual friends?" Jaune offered awkwardly.
Nodding in ascent of the answer given, Winter explained to her sister, "Jaune is actually quite accomplished with the blade, thanks to training from myself and General Ironwood. Seeing as he owed me a favor, I found it appropriate that he help train you in your swordplay while I was gone. I've also left some journals with Kline to help you with your Glyphs."
A genuine smile stretched across Weiss' face, seeing all the trouble her sister had no doubt gone through to help set her up while she was away.
"Thank you, Winter. I'll be sure to use all that you've given me to improve even more while your away!"
Winter allowed a smirk to stretch across her face.
"See to it that you do."
Without a word more, the elder Schnee left the training grounds.
Turning to regard her new training partner, Winter offered a cocky smirk as she drew Myrtenaster.
"Well let's see what you have to offer me Mr. Arc."
Jaune likewise matched the heiress, drawing out the blade of Crocea Mors.
"You asked for it!"
A pair of ebony cat ears twitched at the sound of someone knocking on their door.
"Odd. We weren't expecting any company today were we, honey?"
A shake of the head and a weary look at the door was the only answer the woman received.
Frowning in confusion, the older woman strode to the door. Unlocking it and gently opening the large slab of wood, Kali Belladonna couldn't fight the gasp that escaped her as she saw who was waiting at the door.
"Hi mom," Blake softly mumbled, her eyes finding the floor far more interesting.
"My baby girl, you're home!"
That was the only warning Blake got before her mother engulfed her in a hug that only a mother could give to her child.
"Kali! Who is it?"
The imposing figure of Ghira Belladonna strode into the entryway only for his eyes to widen.
There standing on the porch was his wife with the most radiant smile she could muster. Clutched in her arms was the daughter he hadn't seen in nearly two years.
Ghira couldn't fight the smile he felt stretch across his face, nor did he really want to. His precious little girl had come home after all.
Moving, he engulfed his girls in a crushing hug.
"Yes Blake, you're home."
Blake felt tears fall as she was both physically and emotionally surrounded by the love of her parents.
"I'm so sorry!"
Neither parent said anything, content to let their daughter vent.
The Belladonna family was whole once more.
"Language young lady!"
"Well then don't hit me so damn hard!"
"Then learn to dodge!"
A punch to her unguarded right side sent Yang tumbling to the floor.
"What the hell Dad!?"
Taiyang crossed his arms and matched his eldest daughter's glare.
"You're the one that wanted this. You're the one that said no to the replacement arm General Ironwood sent to you."
Punching the floor in frustration, Yang rose to her feet, every bit the defiant young woman he knew she was.
"Because this is my damn fault! I was the idiot that rushed in there! I was the moron who thought my Semblance made me invincible! Taking that arm means I'll never learn from my mistakes."
Taiyang's gaze softened. While it was true he saw a lot of Raven in her, Yang was just as much his child.
'If not more so considering I was the one who raised her.'
Pushing the small amount of bitterness he felt towards his first lover aside, the Xiao Long patriarch decided it was high time he opened up a little more to his daughter. He'd much rather do it himself than have Qrow or some other outside source muck it up and confuse his already damaged first born.
Turning his gaze to the sky, Taiyang let out a shuddering sigh.
"You know, when we lost Summer...I blamed myself."
Yang looked up, eyes wide. Summer Rose was a name she hadn't heard her father speak of in years. The loss of his second lover had nearly shattered the man into pieces and to this day, none of them had really recovered from it.
"I felt like such an idiot for letting her go on that mission alone…"
Sparks flew as Harbinger clashed against Hi no Ishi.
Pyrrha gave out an animalistic grunt as she fought against her burning muscles in an attempt to overpower Qrow.
While the younger redhead looked like she had been dragged through the dirt more than once, the elder Huntsman was the picture of calm.
Twisting his hold on his weapon and shifting his center of balance caused Pyrrha to stumble at the loss of resistance.
Using the flat side of his sword/scythe, Qrow sent the redhead to the ground.
The elder Huntsman said nothing as he watched his protegee lay there, covered in dirt and filth, taking in gulps of some much needed air.
"I think we're done for today," Qrow finally said.
Pyrrha grit her teeth as she struggled to get back on her feet.
Qrow rubbed at his stubble as he watched the pitiful display. There was something to be said about the girl's drive to better herself. However, in her current state of complete and utter exhaustion, no meaningful progress could be made. The only thing that would be accomplished by letting this go on was allowing Pyrrha to further drown herself in her depression. Shaking his head, the alcoholic Branwen knew he would have to be somewhat cruel to drive his point home.
Holstering his blade, Qrow approached the still struggling teen. There was a flash of pity in his eyes as he watched her attempt to use Hi no Ishi's staff as a cane of sorts. With a frown, the red-eyed Huntsman kicked the staff out from Pyrrha's grasp.
The redhead cried out in pain as she fell to the floor again.
"We're done for today."
With his peace said, Qrow took his leave.
Tears of frustration trailed down Pyrrha's dirtied face. Gritting her teeth, the redhead began to claw at the ground, trying to literally drag herself towards Hi no Ishi.
Unbeknownst to her, the equally battered and exhausted Nora and Ren watched from afar for a moment before moving to help their friend.
Iwagakure no Sato. Had Naruto even attempted to step foot anywhere near it or its home country of Tsuchi No Kuni (Land of Earth) at any point in his time period, he probably would've quickly found himself facing its entire shinobi force. Despite having never done anything to it or its people, his father had been the one to near single handedly bring the shinobi village to heel during the Third Great Shinobi War.
Slaughtering a thousand of a Village's ninja in a single battle in under a minute was not exactly the best way to make friends with them.
Still, Iwa's hate for Naruto was not entirely due to his father. His mother had also made a name for herself during the war through a combination of her Adamantine Sealing Chains, mastery of Fūinjutsu, and unique style of Ninjutsu.
More than that though, both Iwa and Kumo had feared and hated Kushina as she had been a living reminder of one of their most hated enemies, the Uzumaki clan.
As the child of both Kushina Uzumaki and Minato Namikaze, it was easy to see why Naruto's presence anywhere near the Land of Earth would've caused a possible international incident.
Naruto sighed as he allowed those thoughts to slip from his mind.
"Not like any of that matters anymore anyways."
Standing at the precipice above a massive crater, the blond found himself staring at the rubble that had once been Iwagakure. Gone were the homes and buildings that the people of the Land of Earth had hewn straight from the very mountains themselves. Even the mountain ranges that had given the village its name were gone.
If it wasn't for the intel that Roman had given him, Naruto would've just assumed that a meteor had struck down here ages ago.
Catching a flash of pink and white out of his peripheral vision, the blond turned to address his partner.
"Looks like we're gonna have to do a little digging this time Pipsqueak."
Neo, unphased by the nickname, simply arched an eyebrow, her eyes flashing to a pale shade of pink.
Scratching the back of his head, Naruto chuckled.
"True, guess I could just throw some clones down there and have them grind everything up with a few Rasengans."
The diminutive teen offered a foxy smirk, mirroring the one Naruto was known for.
With a shake of his head at Neo's antics, the whiskered teen turned his gaze back to the rubble below. With nary a thought, a couple dozen Shadow Clones popped into existence behind him.
Already knowing what they were to accomplish, the small army of copies flung themselves into the crater below, a Rasengan in each hand.
"Hopefully this one isn't a bust as well…"
AN: ...sooo…how's it going guys? See any good movies? Any good anime?
Yeah, I know I'm just dancing around the issue.
Let's get some shit straight!
No I'm not back, not entirely at least. I had said in the last AN of RMS that I intended to take a break and then spend a bunch of time writing shit so I had a backlog of stuff to release over time.
Needless to say, that didn't happen.
To be completely honest, I kinda just stopped writing and then could never find the drive to pick it up. To top it off, I've completely lost any interest in RWBY. The last few seasons have just...not been good, more on that later.
So then why did I post this?
Well I recently went back and was rereading RMS, the MANY reading fics it had done for it, past reviews, and even current PM's from people wondering if I'd died. I also just looked through my Google Docs to see the chunks of things I've written for both old and new stories. Actually, this prologue of sorts has been chilling since the beginning of this year along with a multitude of chapter chunks for book 2.
But to get back on topic, seeing all of this has reminded me of how much fun it was.
Plus the fact that I think everything that's happened with RWBY in the last couple volumes is garbage. Killing off Adam so they can jerk off their LGBTQ fans? Dumb. (No I don't hate gay people, nor do i dislike the idea of Bumblebee, I just think the way it was written was beyond idiotic.) The fight scene choreo is just...messy and feels like there's no weight to any movement. Ruby's Silver Eyes hack….is dumb and looks dumb.
I could go on, but my point is, I'm displeased with RWBY. Don't even get me started on the fact that RT decided to hole themselves up on their own site. I used to follow Kerry on Twitter and just….argh, so childish.
Getting off track again. I know I'm not the only one unhappy with where RWBY is going, plus remembering the fun I had with this and well, I'm getting my drive back.
TLDR: I am not dead, therefore my stories are not dead. I just need time to "find my muse" again.
Who knows, maybe I'll take a note from fellow author Kyoka Suigetsu Totsuka and just finally write my own damn Reading of this since all 4 of the other ones have either killed off their respective writer, or just stopped being updated.
ALSO, how the hell do people think RMS ended the same as canon RWBY? Pyrrha is alive (albeit mentally and emotionally broken), Blake didn't leave on bad terms, Yang isn't depressed and mopey, Cinder wasn't egregiously hurt, Ruby is getting some actual emotional depth, Torchwick is alive and with Neo, and so much more! RMS ended the same as Vol. 3? Bitch, where?
Until next time.