The last thing Jaune expected coming off the Bullhead was an explosion.

Don't be mistaken, he's hunted enough rogue Powder Kegs to know a thing or two about explosions but Beacon explosions? Completely outside his area of expertise.

Where there's an explosion, there's trouble and where there's trouble there's an inquisitive mind. Jaune Arc is nothing if not inquisitive.

Lying flat in the middle of a small crater was a gothic-dressed child who... looked like they were contemplating their life decisions?

"Child." Her head perked up. "What is your involvement with the explosion?"

"Huh?"

"You're in the midst of an explosion, unharmed solely due to the workings of your aura, if the dim light about you is any indication. Therefore, you must have some involvement with the explosion, no?"

"WHAT NO! I mean yes but-" The gothic girl gets to her feet and keeps her eyes from meeting his. "- I didn't mean to cause the explosion. It was that Weiss girl that kept on waving around her dust container and then I sneezed and I wouldn't have even been like that if it wasn't for Yang abandoning and-", Her eyes widen. "OH MY GOSH I'm rambling... I suck at this entire talking to people thing and now people are going to think I'm a terrorist." She whispered the last bit.

Has the madness reached her too? Must I cull her, lest she walk about the streets mumbling like the Byrgenwerth beasts? "Worry not, child, I understand your plight." He did not understand. "Ah, before I forget any more of my already poor manners. I am Jaune Arc of the Church's Choir, Executioner Arcrisen and the Kin Listener all in one breadth. Your name would be?"

"Ruby Rose." It was a sad sight to see the child so dejected, something he needed to remedy. (Willingness to kill a child for good cause doesn't mean he enjoys seeing them hurt).

"Ah yes, the explosion must be the reason for your quiet. Here I was hoping my first friend at Beacon would be an exuberant gothic girl with no sense of style." He smiled brightly alongside the invitation to friendship. She smiled back, seeming to break out of her shell; humans are too easy to manipulate.

Piss off Flora, your thoughts aren't welcome in my head.

"Of course I can be an exuberant... wait... what did you say about my style?"

"So, little one, do you know where we ought to be right now?" Arc has always been a master of subtle subject changes.

"OH YEAH! The auditorium. Which is... I have no idea."

They both looked around, only to find that there was nobody around them to follow. They decided to leave things up to their navigation skills... Meaning they made it into the room just as Ozpin was leaving from his speech.

"Oh, sorry Jaune, that's my sister. I gotta go." Ruby scampered off to her sister, vanishing into the auditorium crowd.

"What a peculiar child, though I must admit that her hair is a soothing colour." Reminiscent of the blood-soaked hair that the Church's finest would always fashion.

He looked around the room, keen on finding a spot to spend the night and that's when he saw hair. Standing tall with a brilliant head of crimson red hair was what looked to be a whore dressed as a battle woman. That made him think to the high number of what he had assume are whores based on the lack of covering on their clothes.

Well at least this whore holds the beauty of crimson. I ought to ask her about the people's lack of modesty. I only see this much depravity in the low rings, during the hunt. Definitely not what I expected from a prestigious academy.

"Pardon me ma'am but I must ask, why is it that whores are permitted to wander around Beacon? Is this some Valean custom that I don't understand?" He attempted to placate her when he saw a confused expression about her. "Of course I mean no offense. Based on the quality of your cloth, I can see that you're no common whore but surely there are places better than an educational institute to sell yourself, no?"

There was a moment of silence between the two, one of them eagerly waiting for his answer while the other seemed to process the question. Then, realization seeped into the whore's eyes, quickly morphing into anger.

"I don't know who you are and why you want my attention but this is most certainly not how you get it." She turned around and began to storm off. "Spare me an introduction, I would rather I don't have to talk to you again."

No one makes sense in this backward world. I give up.

Jaune chose to go for the safe option in that situation. He called for his messengers and a large school of tiny white corpse like creatures sprouted from the ground, donning stylish (their words not mine) black top hats.

They shifted up his body, disrobing him and putting on a new set of clothes with speed that spoke to practice. No longer in the weighted garments of the Choir and able to properly see without the blindfold cap blocking his eyes, Jaune could relax in his bunny onesie, an outfit he'd become quite attached to in the past week.

He asked for the messengers to bring his rune workbench and tools. It was a stone tablet about the size of his torso, made with unassuming stone, alongside a moonlight imbued dagger.

He went to the ballroom early and found a quiet corner to work with his runes, imbuing and altering into the night.

x

Weiss was having a horrible day. Her outlook of Beacon had already soured when some bratty kid had blew her up due to her irresponsible dust treatment; only Oum knows how she managed to get in.

Her already worsening opinion went down the drain when she had to tour around campus with no proper guide to showcase what she needs to know; horribly irresponsible conduct for a supposedly prestigious school.

However, nothing was more aggravating then trying to put an end to a horrid day within the comforts of a makeshift sleeping space, only to be kept awake by the same explosive brat being unnecessarily loud.

"What in the world is wrong with you!? Don't you know that some people are trying to sleep?"

"YOU! The mean ice girl!"

Weiss had to stop for a second just to process that the irresponsible, immature, unnecessarily loud brat was the one calling her mean.

I swear, if I wasn't talking to an ignorant child, I would've strangled her by now. "How am I the mean. I'm clearly the only one who cares about the other students enough to ask obnoxiously loud idiots to think for a single second. If anything, I'm being the kind one. You should be thanking me for pointing out your faults. I'm-"

"Rambling on in a fit of anger. My apologies ma'am but I believe you need to take a step away from your fit." In front of Weiss stood a tall blonde boy with a yellow mop of hair, most of it covered by the hood of his... bunny onesie. The absurdity of such a well spoken person wearing something ridiculous had Weiss pausing enough for him to continue talking.

"Jaune Arc greets Lady..."

"Schnee," she said on reflex. "My name is Weiss Schnee..." She took a second to process what he said and then winced. "You're right. I won't say I approve of their volume but my tangent certainly didn't help with that."

He smiled so brightly and beautifully that Weiss was sure she would have reacted to it if it wasn't for his... apparel. "Well, it certainly is a breath of fresh air to meet someone who can hold themselves to the degree of decorum I've become accustomed to. It truly was a pleasure to meet you Lady Schnee. I wish you good luck in tomorrow's endeavors."

"And, I, you."

Weiss walked off from that encounter contented, the exchange was short polite and comfortable, something she hadn't gotten in Beacon. It wasn't anything special past Arc's odd attire but it was comforting to know that not all of Beacon's students would be lacking class. Weiss fell asleep that night, more hopeful for what the future would hold.

x

She had only wanted one thing when coming into Beacon. Pyrrha had only wanted the peace of not being recognized everywhere she went but, even as far out as Vale, people still flocked her in hopes of meeting 'Mistral's Famed Invincible Girl'. Case in point, there was an even more famous Weiss Schnee attempting to get in her good graces.

"Don't you think the two of us would make a great team? Seeing as you haven't found any prospective teammates yet, I believe I could do an exemplary job at filling that role."

Pyrrha was had to resist the urge to roll her eyes. "Yes... That would be grand."

"Pardon my bluntness but your lying needs work."

"Arc?"

"Lady Schnee." The tall blonde who had walked up from behind Pyrrha nodded. "I truly hate to antagonize you again but surely you must see that this young lady was uncomfortable as you talked."

Arc's voice sounded somewhat familiar. He was wearing a plain black t-shirt with black jeans. It was so bland... but something about the boy was familiar to Pyrrha.

"I think you're just reading things wrong Arc. Pyrrha, could you please tell him that I'm not a bother, if only to disparage his unfounded concerns."

Pyrrha turned towards Arc, only to see his eyes light up with recognition. Oh. He knows me too, it seems.

"AH! So it was fame, no? You know Pyrrha, it would be so much easier to understand your grievances if you were vocal about them. The only reason I recognized your problem with being recognized is because I had to deal with similar back at the Church..."

Wait, so he doesn't know me?

"Ah, where are my manners?" He held out his hand. "Jaune Arc, Master of Runes, at your service. I must apologize for thinking you a whore and I'd like to ask about your attire, or more accurately, if it's common place with Vale."

... HE'S the one that called me a whore. "So you genuinely didn't know who I was then?"

"How would I have known?"

"What in the world are you referring to?"

Jaune at least had the sense to look embarrassed as he quickly retold our prior meeting.

"You don't know who Pyrrha Nikos is? How could you possibly not know who Pyrrha is."

It was somewhat saddening to think about how quickly Weiss forgot the topic highlighting her faults.

"I'm quite ignorant to a good number of affairs; my old town was relatively reclusive." Pyrrha could here a story behind the 'was' in that sentence but she knows not to pry into affairs of that nature. "But we're veering away from the conversation topic. Is such... immodest clothing commonplace in Vale?"

Pyrrha took that for the olive branch it was, an opportunity to not talk about the teams. "Um, it's not exactly common to see people wearing the clothes I am but most wouldn't consider this too immodest. At worst, my clothes would be considered eccentric for those who aren't Huntresses."

"Fascinating." There was something pleasant in how he said that. He truly found Pyrrha's words fascinating. It wasn't an empty attempt to woo her or reflective of interest in her. To him Pyrrha was just a normal person saying something interesting and she loved that. "Well, we ought to head to the cliff lest we miss initiation. My apologies for occupying your time."

He ran off with shocking speed but not before sending a playful smile at Pyrrha.

There was no time for Pyrrha to talk to Weiss as they jogged towards the Beacon Cliffside but Pyrrha certainly wasn't complaining.

x

Jaune was ready. Dispelling the minor beast transformation he performed on his legs (controlled mastery of the beast transformation rune is a great part of his arsenal) he had his messengers near instantaneously change him into the humbler student garments. - A white sleeved shirt, brown vest, and a formal beige gilet that reached his knees.

He hadn't been working towards the goal of Huntsmen but this was his chance to feel alive. His chance to do good in the world. His potentially last chance to validate his humanity... His last chance to prove, to himself, that he hasn't gone mad after storming Cainhurst's walls. So when he heard the Headmaster say with a straight face that they need to go on a glorified treasure hunt to receive some 'relic' he was dumbstruck.

It was made worse when he found that the Headmaster thought it suitable for the very first person he sees to be his partner. And the climax to his string of irrationality was that he expects us students to safely land on the ground from atop a mountain.

What in the name of Kos is this old man smoking? "Is Beacon's headmaster high?"

As if to punish him for speaking poorly about Beacon's Headmaster, Jaune was launched into the air. So they'd have us figure out how to land AFTER we gain the height of being launched into the air. I knew I sensed something off about that mans soul.

On such a short notice, Jaune couldn't utilize his newly learned bird beast transformation so he allowed the effects of the Milkweed rune to spread past the insides of his right arm. His arm turned to white celestial wood and, with that, the wood living parasite in him could spread. His arm glowed blue and he was shrouded in an arcane light; a utilization of the Kin's power in his parasites.

The spell he casted activated and his body dispersed into smoke, reappearing on the ground by where he could see a certain individual would land. He 'aimlessly' wandered about the forest and just happened upon Ms Nikos. It was truly gratifying, knowing that Pyrrha was happy to see him there.

Oh Flora, for as much as I hate you, I can't deny that humans are easy to manipulate.

(A/N: I mean, who was surprised? 'Red is Familiar'? I was practically shoving the Pyrrha partnership into your faces)