The Fire

Setting: After Ruin


The impact resonated up her spine and into her skull as the room shook. Her teeth vibrated as the noise faded away. Yes, vibrated, because there was no way they were chattering. She was not nervous, she was not afraid.


And yet, as the crash on the opposite side of the door sounded again and the metal caved inward, she couldn't deny the pounding of her heartbeat in her ears, nor the slight tremble of her knees. She clenched and unclenched her fists anxiously. She tried to, anyway. The fingers on her right hand obeyed, but there was no response from those on her left. She was still getting used to the burned stump that truncated her arm at mid-forearm. She hadn't had a chance to look into a prosthetic since sustaining the injury almost two months ago. Not with that hellhound chasing her down.


Another dent appeared, and the men around her shifted nervously. They glanced at one another, eyes wide through their masks. Whereas normally she would criticize them as cowards, and make them abundantly aware of it, she couldn't find it in herself to blame them for their fear. Not with what the thing on the other side of the door had done. It had been pursuing them, her, since shortly after they had fled Vale. With each passing day, it had gotten closer and closer, tearing through every single barrier or defense she had thrown in front of it. People, mechs, guns, it had shattered them all as if they were made of glass. They were just a distraction to it. She was its prey, and it was intent on having her no matter what.

Boom. The entire door bent slightly out of its frame this time, and she tensed. It wouldn't last much longer, and she knew what was coming once it gave out.

Across the entire continent of Vytal, it had hunted them. No matter where she went or what hole she tried to hide herself in, it found her. This was her final stronghold, the last place she could run to, and even here it had tracked her. There was a burning path of destruction furrowed across the land that would be easy to follow to anyone with eyes. It wouldn't be long before the authorities found her and took her into custody to await her punishment. She almost let out a hollow chuckle at the thought.

If only she were that lucky.


The metal folded in the middle as the door blasted off its hinges and into the room. The fifteen guards assembled around her flinched and nervously readied their weapons. As if the poor fools actually stood a chance. They were the dregs of her forces, the only ones left. The best of her soldiers had perished weeks ago. The enemy they faced had torn apart a mech with its bare hands. Only three of the fifteen were equipped with guns, the rest held blades in front of them. Who knew, maybe one of them would get in a lucky shot.

All thoughts of luck disappeared from her head as it stepped through the gaping hole into the room. She didn't bother referring to it as a 'her' anymore, because it was no longer a woman. It was a beast, an unstoppable embodiment of vengeance and wrath. Fire swirled around it, seemingly becoming one with the mane of blond hair that flowed down its back. Its gauntlets were already deployed on its arms. Its combat outfit was beaten to hell, the brown jacket sporting several tears, holes, and burns. All that she could focus on, though, were those eyes. Light poured in front the doorway behind it, draping its face in shadow, but those crimson orbs burned with such a fury she felt her heart leap into her throat.

Fear made her raise her arm, summoning a wave of fire and sending it flying toward her opponent. She expected the beast to dodge, hopefully opening it up for an attack from one of her subordinates. What she did not expect was for it to thrust its hands forward in a wedge. As soon as its they entered the flame, it threw them out to the side, parting the flames before they could touch its body. Her jaw slackened and her arm went limp. It had literally torn apart her fire.

Somewhere in the back of her mind, Cinder Fall wondered exactly what sort of monster she had awoken.

Her soldiers raised their weapons, and the monster snarled and moved. Two quick jabs sent shimmering projectiles at the guards with guns. The attacks slammed into them, knocking the firearms from their hands. The third brought up his pistol, but didn't even get a chance to aim before he found the blonde monster directly in front of him, hand already clamping down on the gun. It gripped and twisted, and the faunus gave a scream as he felt his fingers pop. It didn't let him suffer long though; a fist shot forward and smashed into his face. The gauntlet fired, and the entire lower half of the faunus' jaw disappeared.

Before the corpse even hit the floor, it launched itself back across the room, roundhousing another opponent in the side of the head and sending her flying sideways into the wall. Blood darkened the gray metal where she struck.

Two more of Cinder's guards charged from either side. The one in front came in high and stabbed downward, aiming for its heart. The other swung from a low position, hoping to cleave it in two. It leapt into the aim, spinning so its head faced the ground, and grabbed the arm on the one attempting to pierce its chest. It yanked, sending him stumbling forward. His blade lanced through his comrade's neck. The friendly fire was returned though, whenever the other faunus' sword split him open from left hip to right abdomen.

Cinder sent a blistering wave of fire scorching towards it as it landed, but it sunk so low to the floor its face practically brushed the tiles. The attack soared over it, instead igniting three of her comrades. She grit her teeth; this small, enclosed space was going to work against her.

The beast rose from crouch, landing an uppercut on a wolf faunus' chin so strong it lifted him off of his feet and into the ceiling. Cinder launched a fireball at it, but it merely turned and punched it, the discharge from its weapon dissipating the attack with ease. A bear faunus, who actually physically resembled one in more than just his ears, rushed forward, slashing viciously with a dagger. The fiery monstrosity side-stepped the deadly edge and planted a fist firmly in his stomach.

The blow knocked him back and doubled him over. Another promptly found his face, snapping his head back and sending him into the air. Before he could even land, its foot lifted over him, and slammed down, crushing his throat into the floor. She suppressed a wince at that. There was no doubt that his windpipe was crushed. He would not be getting back up.

Three more fireballs blasted from Cinder's hand. The monster batted aside a blade aimed for its head, twisted inside its opponent's guard, grabbed her and threw in front. One fireball missed entirely, striking the far corner of the room in a shower of sparks. The other two both struck the faunus girl. As her corpse collapsed, it dashed out from behind her, crimson eyes narrowed and staring right at her. For the first time since breaking down the door, it was coming for her.

She stumbled backward frantically, but it closed the distance between them in three long strides, dodging around the few guards left with ease. Cinder's hand slashed downward, wreathed in flame, but it knocked it aside with its left hand before sending a wicked right for her face. Seeing she had no option, she brought the stump of her left arm up, taking the blow on her forearm. She felt the bones snap under the force, and bit back a cry of pain.

The next attack came faster than she could react, its left hand slamming into her abdomen with enough force to drive the air from her lungs. Something secondary hit her inside as well, and she heard rather than felt one of her organs rupture with a sickening squelch. Golden eyes went wide as she stumbled back a step, coughing up a handful of blood. She glared at her opponent. It was using internal Aura attacks now. She wouldn't last much longer if she didn't keep her guard up. She'd have to be extra careful from here on.

All thoughts of being careful crashed and burned as pain exploded through her left leg. No longer able to support her weight, her knee buckled and dumped her to the ground. As she fell, she saw what had happened. It had its foot extended right where her knee had been. A low kick.

Her knee was shattered, Cinder was sure.

Fortunately for her, the five troops of hers that still remained chose that moment to come to her aid. It turned its attention from her to them. As she watched it grabbed the first punch thrown at it, and twisted the faunus' arm it was attached to until there were several loud cracking noises. He gave a sharp cry of pain, and Cinder tried to blast the monster from her position on the floor. Yes again, it avoided her attack, though, spinning behind the faunus whose arm it had just broken. The flames melted the skin from his face.

He had been going to die anyway, she had probably just made it quicker.

It fired its gauntlets, sending it careening into an opponent, extended fist smashing directly into his face. It fired again, killing the man it had attacked, and sending its elbow juking backward, directly into the throat of the deer faunus who had been trying to get the drop on it. She fell to her knees, face turning purple as she desperately clawed at her neck.

Cinder pushed herself to her feet, leaning heavily on her right side. Only she and two more White Fang soldiers stood against this beast. This fight wouldn't last much longer, one way or another. All she had to do was kill it, or even just disable it. All she had to do was survive and make it back to headquarters. They could fix her up there, she was sure. No injury was too great for them…for her

The beast shot forward, ducking the blade of the first faunus and continuing past him, offering a small jab to the ribs as she did so. He dodged away from the blow, but his comrade didn't have the same sort of deftness as it closed on him. Its hand clamped around his skull, and its semblance flared to life around them. The flames billowed a brilliant gold; their roar almost drowned out the shrieks of agony from the faunus as he was burned alive.

The last remaining soldier stared on in horror, before turning and sprinting toward the door. He had enough. He didn't want to die. It didn't even let him reach the door.

A telltale boom reverberated through the chamber, accompanied by a faint whistle. The attack slammed into the fleeing faunus, catching him directly between his shoulder blade. His entire chest cavity vanished, and his corpse fell over the threshold.

With that, they were alone.

Those crimson eyes turned to look at her, and Cinder panicked.

She sent wave after wave of flame hurtling towards the monster. The monster dodged some, tore others apart, and even plunged directly through one, all the while moving closer.

"Stay away!" Cinder roared, but there was no reply. She hadn't expected there to be one. She had never heard it utter a single word in the time it had been pursuing her. "I said STAY AWAY!" She summoned an especially scorching blast of fire as it stepped in and swung with its right fist. The flames rushed out and over its arm, but it kept coming regardless, and its fist crashed into her hand. She screamed in agony as every bone in her arm shattered at the impact.

The beast wasted no time, grabbing her by the throat and lifting her into the air. Cinder noted, through bleary eyes, that her right arm was severely injured. The sleeve of her jacket was scorched away, and the skin from her forearm back to her shoulder was covered in a horrible burn.

At least I managed to injure it, she thought with a slight lift of her mouth.

One that quickly disappeared as the monster's uninjured fist rocketed into her gut. It pulled back, and then did so again. And again. And again. Every blow resonated throughout her entire body, breaking bones and bursting organs and arteries alike. Cinder tried to scream, to beg, but the hand around her throat was clamped so tightly it was all she could do to breathe.

She knew it was over when she felt the blood start to leak from her eyes. Apparently, so did it. The punches stopped coming, and Cinder glanced down through golden irises turned orange, wondering if maybe it had decided to grant her some form of mercy.

She didn't wonder long.

Its left hand shot forward like a spear, fingers straight and flames swirling around it. Her skin might just as well have been made of paper; it parted before the heat so easily. She felt the hand pierce her just below her ribs, felt each individual fingers as they cut through her flesh. She also felt it summon its Aura, and she knew what was coming.

All her life, fire had been her loyal servant. Never had she imagined that it would also be her end.

"Demon," she breathed, before the flames ignited in her stomach and scorched their way up her throat, searing all the oxygen from her lungs so that she couldn't even scream. White hot fire erupted from her mouth, from her eyes, from her wounds, and her body shook violently. It didn't take much longer before Cinder was nothing more than her namesake.

Yang ripped her hand from the charred remains. They crumbled to the ground, ash and soot staining the tiled floor around them.

She glared at them before whispering in a harsh voice, "If I'm a demon, it's only because you made me this way."

She turned and strode from the room, not sparing a second glance to the corpses she left in her wake. Her arm throbbed painfully, but she paid it no mind.

That was one down.

One to go.

A/N: Hello, everyone! and surprise!

Bet those of you who saw I wanted to give you a present were expecting another chapter. Well, yes and no, hahah

So let me give you the breakdown. As mentioned, this story is going to be a collection of one/multishots dealing with side events that happen before, after, or in between the books of the Rending trilogy. I will stating underneath the title of the chapters when they take place, so that should save confusion. Also, do not expect this to update very often at all, mainly only whenever I get a new idea or find time to get to it. It's going to be sporadic.

Anywho, yes, originally, this was not going to be the first chapter, but a lot of people showed interest in the Yang/Cinder fight, and the original first chapter is something I can't write quite yet because I haven't revealed enough in Redemption. I decided this would be a good start.

So what did you all think? I hope you all enjoyed it! Writing from Cinder's perspective was interesting, to say the least

If there's any particular scenes anybody would like to see, please feel free to review or shoot me a message, and I'll see what I can do