Welp. Here's the new story. It'll be rotating on a bi-weekly basis with Service with a Smile. I agonised for ages over the title, unsure if I should go for something decent sounding but serious, or just embrace the zany concept with a bonkers title. In the end, well, you can see.
The forum and I even went through weird Isekai titles. It wasn't easy and "Yellow Fang" just didn't have the edge I wanted. Do I like this? Eh. It's a meh from me. Serious titles are often much easier than comedy ones, as even "Beacon Civil War" had a title that implied a more serious nature – despite being the epitome of crack.
I even read through a list of every rabbit breed I could find to see if any seemed fitting!
Did you know there's a rabbit called "American Standard Rabbit" – and it's a rare breed! America, please, this isn't what `standard` means… and it was originally called the "German Blue Vienna" before that. How less American can you get?
Rabbit names didn't help. I had to enlist the Professor Arc forum's aid. My thanks to them!
We actually have some cover art for this already thanks to Serox, who kindly made a derpy White Fang logo for Jaune. There was a more serious version too, with the bunny snarling like the canon WF logo, but this kind of wide-eyed panicked expression fit much better.
Cover Art: Serox
Adam was a man with many regrets.
Blake was one of them. A recent one. Beyond that, he regretted how the faunus had rolled over after the last war; how many of them accepted debasement and poverty. He regretted that violence was necessary to change the status quo; that good men and women had to die to bring change. That his people were seen as monsters, and that history would not remember them fondly whatever the outcome of their revolution.
Adam was a man with many regrets.
He was also a man with a hole in his throat, which really ought to have invalidated a lot of those regrets; or at least pushed them down in importance. He pondered that for a second, but only for a second. There wasn't anything with which to ponder when you were dead. Had he lived a little longer, Adam might have regretted his death being so…
Suddenly, Adam was a man with very few regrets. Unless he counted as a dead body which still did. Perhaps the millions of tiny bacteria that made up his system and lived in symbiosis with the man were regretting not picking someone a little more long-lived. Perhaps his gut regretted the food it had eaten earlier, which would soon be decomposing in a stomach that was in itself decomposing.
Maybe I'm thinking too hard on this, Jaune thought.
He was, after all, a man stood in a shop with a bloody knife in one hand, a dead body on the floor and at least six armed terrorists in masks behind him. It wasn't the best time for philosophy. In fact, it might just have been the worst of times.
Jaune was also a man with many regrets.
He regretted coming to Vale. He regretted trying to become a huntsman. He regretted the sticky toffee pudding he'd had an hour before, which was now flip-flopping around in his stomach and he regretted waving back at that pretty girl earlier who had been waving at someone behind him and had then laughed at his embarrassment. Compared to a man like Adam they were fairly pathetic regrets – but they were his, damn it, and no one would take them away.
Oh, and he regretted everything that led up to this disaster.
"He killed Adam," one of the faunus said. He wore the distinctive mask of the White Fang, which didn't quite cover the gobsmacked look on his face. His grey uniform blended in with his fellows and the gun at his side was pointed down. "He… He killed Adam. Just like that…"
Jaune hid the bloody knife behind his back. "No, I didn't."
"You-" the faunus choked on air. "Knife…"
With a metallic clink, the murder weapon bounced off the wall, not quite disappearing around the corner as Jaune had hoped it would. The bloody instrument came to rest where it fell, visible to all. Nervously, Jaune stepped over and gave it a kick, sending it skittering out of sight. He cleared his throat, coughed and faced the White Fang once more.
The man pointed weakly.
Another placed a hand on his arm and pushed it down, shaking his head slowly.
By this point the store owner had taken the distraction he'd provided to do the brave thing and run far, far away, abandoning his innocent customer to the White Fang. If he was lucky, the man would call the police and they could tell his parents how he died.
The dust store was silent. The six faunus continued to stare at him, weapons pointed toward the ground and eyes gingerly flicking between Jaune and the dead body of Adam Taurus. He certainly looked dead. A hole in the throat tended to do that to a person, breath being at least somewhat important in the day-to-day running of the brain.
"What do we do?" a female faunus asked. "He killed Adam."
"I guess… I guess that makes him the new boss?"
"Is that how it works?"
"I don't know. Do you want to argue with him?"
"He was unarmed when Adam took him hostage." The faunus nodded to the dead man. "Look how that worked out."
Adam didn't respond, on account of being life impaired.
In his defence – not that it did him much good now – Adam had chosen his hostage carefully. The shopkeeper might have had any kind of weapon under his counter, while the derpy looking teenager in the corner had a sword on his person. A danger, yes, but better a danger addressed than ignored. He'd snuck up, wrapped an arm around the boy's throat and placed a dagger to his neck.
In Jaune's defence – and he definitely needed it right now – he'd suddenly found himself with a knife at his neck. Panic felt, at the very least, an understandable reaction.
The rest was a blur. Quite literally. There had been screaming, crashing shelving units, angry shouting, much flailing and then gravity playing tricks on them. At one point there'd been some shattered dust jars, some explosions, a few crackling bolts of lightning and a smell not unlike urine, that turned out to be urine, likely from how he'd pissed himself in absolute panic. Again, fair. Knife to neck and all that. The culmination of it all led to a somewhat improbably series of events where he found himself on top of a stunned, dazed and blinded terrorist wiping dust from his eyes. The rest, as they say, was history.
"If I kill him, does that make me the boss?"
"Sure. Go for it."
The faunus did not in fact `go for it`. He stood exactly where he was and looked to his fellows nervously. "I was only asking…" He licked his lips. "So. Uh. New boss?"
The six of them bent knee.
Now, Jaune knew he was a bit of an idiot.
His mom said it. His dad said it. His sisters said it. He said it too – and there was plenty of evidence to back it up, both from school papers, social interactions (or misinteractions most commonly) and the occasional moment where common sense failed, like wanting to become a huntsman despite not having aura or any lick of combat training. But there was being an idiot and then there was being an idiot.
He was an idiot in the sense of making stupid mistakes and not accounting for the risks; he was not an idiot in the sense of telling a bunch of deadly criminals who were inexplicably calling him their boss that he wasn't in fact their boss, and that they should just kill him and get on with what they were doing.
He was dumb, not suicidal.
"Yes. That's right. I'm… I'm your new boss." He swallowed. "So you better do what I say if you don't want the same as what happened to Adam to happen to you."
"I'm not gonna argue with you, boss." The apparent spokesperson for the faunus was a tallish man with a pair of glasses balanced on the outside of his mask. "What are your orders?"
Surrender and tie yourselves up? Turn around, cover their eyes and count to five thousand? That didn't seem likely to go down well and was liable to get him shot, which give the whole no aura thing would be a pain. A very brief pain, but pain nonetheless.
"What is it you were doing before?"
"Adam brought us here to secure dust, oh divine and most wise leader."
Seeing as they were in a dust store, Jaune wondered how the man could say that with a straight face. "Right. I knew that. And call me Jaune." He coughed into one hand. "Secure the dust. Take as much as you can carry and we'll get out of here."
There. That sounded good enough. The faunus evidently agreed because they holstered their weapons and went about filling vials and cases of dust, draining them from various tubes and containers lining the walls. While they did, Jaune eyed the exit and calculated his chances of making a break for it. Factoring in the distance, his overall fitness and the way his knees were knocking together, he estimated he could make it halfway before he fainted.
The alternative was letting them take the dust, telling them to take it somewhere and then walking away when they went to do so. He could book the first bullhead back to Ansel, hang up Crocea Mors and get a real job.
"Glorious leader," a voice behind him said. "We've secured the dust."
"Um. Yes. Good." They were all looking to him for instructions. "Do we have a way of getting it out?"
"We have a van parked out back."
There was in fact a van parked around the back of the building, sequestered down an alleyway with its back door open. Several of the faunus ran ahead to stack the containers in the back while another crawled in and between the seats, turning on the ignition. The lights flashed forward and back, illuminating them in the late evening dark. It struck Jaune again that he was consorting with criminals, literally helping them toss loot into an escape vehicle.
Better that than being Adam'd.
Sadly, the world didn't seem to agree. White light suddenly shone down the alley, blinding them. Two headlights were shining fiercely against them, silhouetting them.
"This is the police!" someone yelled. "Put your hands on your heads!"
Tyres screeched behind them as well, another car pulling up at the mouth of the alley and cutting off their escape.
For the briefest of instants, Jaune thought back to the shopkeeper with absolute joy. The old man had called the police – he was saved. That relief soon died when he noticed the guns very much pointed at him, and the fact he was currently surrounded and quite complicit with several criminals.
"Boss, we're surrounded!" the driver yelled. "What do we do?"
Jaune already had his hands on his head. "What?" he asked, wondering why they were staring at him. "I'm doing what comes naturally."
The tallest of the faunus howled and leapt forward, gun at the ready. "Long live the White Fang!"
"Shit!" The police ducked behind their car doors. "OPEN FIRE!"
Jaune was a man with many regrets but being gunned down by the police wasn't about to become one of them.
Hands still on his head in the vague hopes they'd noticed and not hurt him, he hurled himself back through the door and into the dust shop, dodging the hail of bullets that tore back and forth outside. He landed hard, face down and shaking, wide eyes staring into Adam's dead face.
You did this, Adam seemed to say. You dumb fucker.
Jaune scurried to his feet. "It's not my fault!"
Out. He needed a way out.
Scanning the shop, he settled on the front door – obvious in hindsight. Vaulting the counter, he landed on his feet and nearly fell, catching himself on a shelf and racing ahead. His shoulder hit the door and knocked it back. The little bell above squealed angrily.
Stumbling out into the cool air and with the gunfire still echoing behind him, Jaune looked around in panic. There! He dashed across the street and slammed face first into the window of a bright yellow taxi, slapping his hand on the glass and pushing his nose and mouth up against it.
"I need a ride!" he yelled. "NOW!"
The pudgy cabbie inside stared back at him with wide eyes. Terror spread across his face before he screamed and dragged himself over the passenger seat, unbuckling his seatbelt, pushing the other door open and rolling out. The overweight driver ran away, stumbling his way down the sidewalk and abandoning his car.
Jaune stared after him. "What…?"
"Nice work, boss!" A meaty hand landed on his back with a thwack, his allies appearing behind him and having frightened the taxi driver off. Their guns were smoking and two were still firing back toward the shop, keeping the officers pinned. "Guys, the boss got us a car! Quick, get in!"
Not waiting for Jaune to figure out what was going on, the faunus pulled the door open and shoved him inside, following. Jaune had a moment to recognise the footrest of the passenger side as he fell face down into it, legs kicking up in the air, before the other five faunus piled into the back like it was a clown car. Vials and cases of dust spilled out and over the centre console as the bespectacled faunus twisted the key in the ignition and slammed the stick into gear. His foot stamped down on the pedal.
The taxi squealed forward.
Jaune slammed even further down into the footrest, curling into a ball.
Sirens echoed behind them.
"They're on our tail!"
"Gee – you think? It's like we robbed a place or something!" The driver swerved the vehicle left just as Jaune was trying to right himself. The sudden change had him crashing into the door and back down again, moaning faintly. "You okay, boss? Deery, help him up."
Hands gripped him by the shoulders as a woman with deer horns leaned over the seat and pulled him up out the footrest. Jaune mumbled his thanks – if nothing else, mom taught him to be polite – and sagged back, looking out the windscreen in time to scream.
The front of the car ramped up off the road with a horrifying ker-chunk, rattling up onto the sidewalk and a steep flight of stairs. The car wasn't made for it and the sound the wheels made with every fearsome impact was agonising, to say nothing off the bouncing. Deery lurched up and hit the roof, then collapsed over his legs. Glass shattered and lightning dust sparked, turning the inside of the taxi into a fireworks display.
They cleared the steps and went over, lurching ponderously through the air with everyone inside screaming and crackling, watching the road approach and wondering whether the taxi could even take the impact.
Tyres screeched down. The suspension howled and something snapped. A metallic object skittered off to the left while the car went right, Jaune wailing along with Deery, who was sat in his lap with her arms wrapped around his neck.
"Wahooo!" the driver yelled, laughing as he wrenched the wheel to the right, dodged a parked garbage truck and pulled out onto a new road. Behind, the police were forced to navigate around the shortcut they'd taken.
"Perry, you stupid asshole!" Deery screamed, still clinging to Jaune for dear life. "I'll kill you once this is over!"
"Least you'll be free to do so." He slammed the pedal down and brought the revs so high the engine sounded like it was being tortured. There was a horrible rattle from the rear-right wheel that couldn't have been healthy. "Might want to strap your seatbelts. We're not clear yet."
Looking back, three police cars were in pursuit through the rear window, blue and red lights flashing.
Their yellow cab rattled down the road spitting sparks as it went. It wasn't made for speed and the pursuit vehicles were having no trouble catching up. He wasn't even sure if that was a good thing or not. Would they believe him if he said this was all one big misunderstanding? Probably not after they'd already opened fire on them. More likely, they planned to ram them off the road.
"Faster!" Jaune yelled. "Faster!"
"Sure thing, boss!"
Jaune and Deery were slammed back into the passenger seat. Idly, he realised it was the closest he'd ever come to having a girl in his lap. It was also much closer than he wanted as they both clutched to one another in panic.
"Bullhead!" a faunus in the back warned, pointing over the console.
"Fuck!" Perry swerved left and out onto a bridge leading over a canal. The Bullhead followed, flying through the air to their left with its bright spotlight fixed over their car. "They're really bringing out the big guns here. And for what, a little dust?"
"They must want Adam."
"They can have him!" Jaune spat. "He's not doing much right now!"
"Too soon, boss. Too soon."
Jaune's view was cut off – shadows cast over him as something landed on the hood of the car and caused it to buckle. A pair of legs stood before the window. Following them up revealed tight grey trousers leading to a white and grey shirt with a popped collar. A red cloak fluttered behind the man, who looked down on him with a smug grin, faint beard and black-grey hair. A triangular-shaped weapon was slung over one shoulder, his other hand planted on his hip.
The man's grin grew. "Hey there. Room for one more?"
The huntsman raised one foot and slammed a black shoe into the window, shattering it on his side and making the car swerve. Shards of glass rained down on them as everyone – him, Deery, Perry and the passengers in the back – screamed in panic.
"Now, what do we have here," the huntsman said, voice gravelly. He reached in and gripped Jaune by the collar. "Out you come, kiddo. Sheesh. They recruit you lot younger and younger."
"I'm not White Fang!" Jaune wailed. "You've got it wrong."
"Yeah, I'm sure – this is all just one big misunderstanding." The huntsman chuckled and stared to haul him out. Deery and the others grappled with his legs, ironically saving him and for a moment earning his adoration.
"You can't take the boss. He's ours!"
Only for a moment.
"Boss, huh?" The huntsman suddenly looked a whole lot more interested. And pleased. "Well, well, well. And here I thought I'd be wasting my time tonight."
He started to pull harder, stretching Jaune out between him and the faunus, while Perry continued to try and swerve to knock him off the bonnet. Jaune's body rose up off the floor, pulled taut between them like a rope in some mid-car-chase game of tug-of-war. His hands were free and flailing about wildly, desperately trying to push the man off.
It was a lost cause. As the car went left, the huntsman bent his knees, balancing like some goat on a sheer cliff-face. The faunus kept pulling on his feet and legs, Deery at his side with both arms wrapped around his waist, her upper body hanging out the shattered window. Even then it wasn't enough, and he started to inch out, wind whistling through his hair as he found himself half in and half out the car.
"Boss!" one of the faunus yelled, throwing something at him. "Use this!"
A metal briefcase hit his chest. Struggling as he was between them, he still managed to catch it and his eyes widened. Dust was the lifeblood of huntsmen. It was a miracle substance capable of so much – of shaping the weather, creating energy, blowing Grimm away, healing injuries and powering homes. It was a poorly misunderstood and wild source of energy.
The faunus probably meant for him to use the dust – and he would have, had he known a thing about it. Some people dabbled in dust alchemy, mixing various colours and grades to make complicated mixtures. Jaune didn't even like to mix ice-cream flavours, making the dust itself an absolute mystery.
The metal case it was contained within less so.
Jaune slammed a corner of it up into the huntsman's testicles.
Red eyes crossed and the man buckled with a high-pitched groan, hands leaving Jaune's collar to fix over his crotch. With everyone inside the cab pulling, Jaune shot back, now sitting in Deery's lap and face to face with the agonised huntsman who was kneeling on the hood, hands between his legs.
He didn't look pleased.
Jaune panicked, screamed and smacked the metal case across his face. This time, the man was prepared and got his aura up in time. The blow knocked him back but caused no injury – his face being harder than the metal itself. Sadly, the case itself didn't have aura and the impact snapped open one of the latches, making it open and spill dust into the huntsman's mouth and eyes.
Bright flashes of light, fire and ice sparked in the cabin, blinding, burning and freezing their faces in equal measure. The car swerved and squealed as Perry lost sight of the road. The huntsman's kicking legs didn't help in that regard, nor did his arms, lashing out in every direction. His weapon bounced off the roof and away but that made him no less a threat, especially when his face was going through every dust reaction possible.
By intention or terrible accident, the huntsman managed to catch Perry in the jaw with one fist.
The faunus slumped back, his glasses shattered.
Jaune screamed hardest but still managed to lurch over to fight with the wheel, lower half of his body in Deery's lap, her holding onto him in a panic, and his upper half bent over Perry. Perry's foot had the accelerator pushed down and the revs picked up, the car already struggling with its top speed and now being pushed harder and harder.
"Look out!" Deery yelled.
The cab swerved left and then right, dodging a parked lorry and pulling out into the middle of the bridge, skidding like a tap dancer on an ice rink. The road ahead was clear, though only for a moment. The Bullhead that had been chasing them and that had dropped off the huntsman pulled down ahead, hovering over and to the left of the road, bathing them in white light from its spotlight.
"STOP THE VEHICLE!" a mechanical voice instructed.
"I can't!" Jaune howled uselessly back. "He knocked out the driver."
"STOP THE VEHICLE!"
"I – pft – knocked out the what-now?" the huntsman asked, wiping dust out his face. He cleared his vision long enough to look at what was taking place in the driver's seat and curse. "Oh, fuck me…" He glanced back. "Any chance I can convince you lot to give up?"
Still screaming, Deery punched him in the face.
"Ow! Ah! Stop that! I have aura! Oof! Stop!" The huntsman's legs kicked and he struggled with one hand to protect himself. "You're under, damn it, arrest! Stop struggling so damn much!"
"Let go of the wheel!" Jaune shouted. "You'll make us crash."
"If I let go, I fall out!" the huntsman replied.
Every faunus in the cab yelled "GOOD!" at the same time.
Perry groaned and shook himself awake, cracking one eye open and shaking his head. He brought a hand up to pick his glasses off his nose and look at them forlornly, then toss them aside. He looked up, gasped and pointed. "ROADBLOCK!"
Five police cars were split across the road, with two lorries behind to reinforce, lights flashing as they cut off the bridge at the far end, creating a wall of metal their vehicle was careening toward. There was even a line of spikes set up to puncture their tyres beforehand, assuming they still had any. If the screeching and rattling was anything to go by, they were pretty much driving on rims as it was.
This was it. He was dead. Faced with the reality of it, Jaune did the only thing he could.
He curled up into a ball and screamed.
In doing so, he let go of the wheel. The huntsman did not, hardly having expected it and still struggling to keep hold of the car. With the resistance suddenly gone, he slid to the left on the hood, crying out in shock and dragging the wheel with him. It rolled left. The car tried to do the same and swerved hard. Tyres screeched and the world outside the car spun, a heavy railing approaching fast as they drove straight into it and through, off the side of the bridge.
Directly at the hovering Bullhead.
For a second, he could see the pilots looking back at them. Their mouths open. In the grand scheme of things, they probably hadn't expected the White Fang to launch their escape vehicle at them like a surface-to-air missile. It just wasn't the done thing. The training manual didn't even mention the possibility.
The headlights of their car, one cracked, reflected off the cockpit window. The huntsman's face did as well, mouth open in absolute horror as a very flammable object hurtled toward a very flammable object, neither being immovable or invulnerable and both sure to explode merrily on impact. Perry gripped the wheel and tried to right it, screaming the whole time. The tyres twisted left and right but couldn't find much traction on open air.
"Arghhh!" Jaune said.
"Arghhhhhh!" Deery agreed.
"Wahhhhhh!" Perry argued.
"Shiiiiiit!" the huntsman countered.
The others came to their own conclusion, adding a fresh cacophony of wails and screams as they hurtled toward certain death. Inside the cockpit, Jaune got a wonderful view of the pilot also screaming, holding both hands over his face as if he could ward off a car with his bare hands.
The co-pilot slammed his hands over and onto the control stick.
The Bullhead lurched left, swaying perilously and dipping low – losing altitude and almost colliding with the water, barely saving itself at the last second but still thankfully getting out the way.
The huntsman let go as well, weighing his odds between impact with a soon-to-be exploding vehicle and impact with nice soft water below and making the obvious choice. He used his hands and feet to kick off from the car and to the left, accidentally into the path of the Bullhead, which he hadn't predicted to move the same way at all.
He struck the cockpit window and slapped into it face first, obscuring the view of the pilots. More screaming ensued as he held on grimly. The automated windscreen wipers began sweeping, slapping over and over against the side of his face.
The aircraft swerved away, avoiding buildings through sheer luck.
Jaune, Perry, Deery and four other hardened but currently screaming terrorists watched as their battered and bruised bright yellow cab flew over the canal and down toward the other side. It was fifty-fifty on whether they'd be hitting water or the lower road there. Or maybe forty-forty, with twenty per cent reserved for the prospect of hitting the jutting edge of the pier and smashing their car, and themselves, into a million pieces.
The impact crunched.
The car teetered back.
"Forward!" Jaune yelped. "Everyone forward!"
Bodies piled in between the front seats and into him, Deery and Perry, squashing them all up as the weight made the car lurch forth and touch down. Perry hit the gas and it slowly climbed up onto the road, wobbling and teetering away as police sirens blared in the distance. The cab rolled to a stop, spluttered, tinkled some important parts onto the floor and died.
The passenger door swung open, creaked, then fell off and clattered onto the tarmac.
Jaune oozed out, sliding onto the floor.
The back doors fell off and several faunus rolled out, laying flat on their backs and gasping for breath, shaking like they'd seen their lives flash before their eyes. They probably had. One of them was kissing the floor.
The driver side open and slammed shut. A pair of heavy boots came around. "Quick thinking, boss. You really saved our bacon."
"Brbl…" Jaune moaned. "I don't feel… I… urk! Blurghhh!"
"Yeah. I feel the same. Sheesh, what a wild ride." The man hauled him up. Jaune dangled limply over his shoulder, throwing up onto the floor behind him. "Alright, you lot. Grab the stash and let's get into the sewers before they gather themselves. Boss – oh, he's passed out. Guess I'll carry him. He's got us this far, boys and girls, we can handle the rest." He pumped one fist in the air. "For the White Fang!"
"For the White Fang!"
Perry pumped it again. "For our new leader!"
As the police scrambled on the bridge and the Bullhead tried to fish the huntsman out the river, the White Fang disappeared into the sewers, new leader in tow.
Adam Taurus stared up at the ceiling.
Ozpin and Glynda Goodwitch stared back.
"He's dead," she said.
"Yes." Ozpin sipped from his mug. "Quite dead. Qrow failed to capture the perpetrator."
"You should have sent me."
"And Miss Rose may well have been killed. Two attacks on two dust stores in one night; I doubt this is a coincidence. The White Fang and Roman Torchwick are working together. We long suspected it, but this is confirmation."
"And they have new leadership. Is that good or bad?"
"That certainly is the question. Adam Taurus was a monster but a known quantity. We know very little about the one who has taken his place – only that he is powerful and cunning enough to stage a coup and kill a man even Qrow might have struggled against."
"He must be skilled," Glynda said. "Dangerous."
"Very dangerous," Ozpin agreed. "And we don't yet know his motives or his methods, only that he's cunning enough to outwit both the police and Qrow in a single night. We can't afford to take him lightly. The school shall be put on full alert."
Had Adam been capable of it, he might have disagreed. He might have told them that he'd tripped, that he'd messed up, that it was a moment of inattention against a vulnerable opponent that had him failing to hold up his aura at a crucial time.
Adam said nothing.
Juniper Arc hummed to herself as she spooned out ice-cream for her brood and listened with only half her attention to the TV in the front room. Some excitement or other going down in Vale. Not anything to worry about all the way in Ansel but considering how sleepy and peaceful the village could be, she couldn't blame the girls for craving a little more excitement.
Just like their brother. Juniper sighed.
Stacking bowls on a tray, she carried them back through. The girls were absorbed in the TV, barely even paying attention as she dished out the treats. Amber did, at least, thanking her politely and digging in like she'd not seen sugar in years.
"White Fang in Vale," Coral said, bright lights reflecting off her glasses as she sat behind Sable, a leg on either side of her twin's shoulders. "Apparently, they robbed a dust store."
"Oh my. I hope no one was hurt."
"Someone was killed – but not anyone worth worrying about."
"Coral!" Lavender gasped. "Even if he was a terrorist, he was still a person."
Coral rolled her eyes.
Curious, Juniper sat down in the seat normally reserved for her and Nicky. He was out on another hunt but the familiar indent his firm body left in the cushions had her curling up with a contented smile, bringing her legs up like she was cuddling against him. On the screen, Lisa Lavender was busy reporting.
"-streets in chaos as the police, White Fang and huntsman of Vale engaged in a high-pursuit chase though the centre of the city. Fortunately, police were able to divert traffic before an accident could occur."
The screen showed an overhead view from an aircraft. The footage was grainy, but they could make out a car hurling down the centre of a three-lane highway with several cars in pursuit.
"In more shocking news, the White Fang appear to be operating under a new leader after the murder of Adam Taurus, long considered a driving force within the White Fang. A witness to the robbery and proprietor of the store attacked spoke of a clinical murder with little regard for loyalty or mercy."
"Oh my," Juniper said, pressing a hand to her mouth.
An image of Adam Taurus' face appeared, masked and thankfully not attached to a dead body. It was a photoshoot from some other sighting. It was always a shame for someone so young to lose their life, but a small part of her whispered that it was better him than an innocent bystander.
"Does Taurus' death mean a paradigm shift for the White Fang? What will it mean for the people of our city? One thing is for sure, after killing Adam Taurus and engaging in a gunfight with officers, then dealing with a huntsman of the city and escaping, the risk is greater than ever. The Council is scrambling to crack down and Ozpin of Beacon has spoken to assure the populace that their huntsman will be seeking the one responsible and bringing him to justice."
"I should hope so," Juniper said. "We can't have people like that running around causing trouble."
"The city has been placed in lockdown. Traffic in and out will continue, but all residents will be asked to present relevant identification when entering or leaving the city. The Council has said that while they would like to apologise for the disturbance, they ask the people to bear it for now and until this menace is brought to justice."
"You think Jaune knows anything?" Jade asked. "He's in Vale, isn't he? I wonder if he saw it!"
"I would hope not," Juniper said. "Jaune is a smart young man who wouldn't be caught anywhere near something like this."
"Thanks to footage captured by Vale and corroboration from a local taxi driver who only just managed to escape with his life, we have been able to identify the new leader of Vale's White Fang, and I have been given permission to share that information."
A familiar face appeared on the screen.
"Jaune Arc. Non-local to Vale. Seventeen years of age." The photo was of Jaune – her son – and was a school photo with him smiling shyly. Now beneath him was the White Fang symbol. "This man is considered highly dangerous and is not to be approached under any circumstances. Any information on his whereabouts should be passed through to the relevant authorities. I repeat, this man is considered highly dangerous and should be avoided at all costs."
The girls stared at the screen, no one knowing quite what to say.
A heavy fist slammed on the front door. "This is the police. Open up!"
Juniper's head fell into her hands.
"Damn it, Jaune…"
Wait, how could JAUNE kill ADAM!? He has aura!
I'm going with the Sienna excuse for this. Because there's no realistic or good explanation for how Jaune could actually beat Adam, I won't be trying to justify it – it simply isn't feasible outside a freak meteor strike. Instead, I'll just be saying it's the same as how Adam killed Sienna. She just for some obscure reason decided not to use her aura when someone is making threatening gestures in front of her.
Adam didn't see Jaune as a threat and let his guard down. It happened.
I'll be using a lot of established but minor White Fang characters in this where possible. Rooster Teeth actually has a surprising amount of side characters that actually have names and abilities, but only appear for, like, ten seconds or more. They even have their names detailed in the credits.
Deery, for instance, is the one who pops up through the train hatch in Mountain Glenn to yell at Team RWBY. Perry is the guy with glasses outside his mask who talks with Roman. Don't worry though, the usual cast will still be around and involved.
Next Chapter: 12th November
P a treon . com (slash) Coeur