Summary: Weiss remembers.
Side Story: Doorstep
'Pyrrha? What are you doing here?'
'I… wanted to see you before the dance.'
'Is this about-?'
'Pyrrha, if you're not comf-'
'No, no. It's not that. I don't want to be the one to rain on your parade. Sorry, I just… really need to say this.'
'He's a good guy, Weiss. He's grown a lot since our first year, but he's still a bit of an airhead from time to time… but he's a good guy.'
'I know he is.'
'And I just want you to know that if you take good care of him… then he'll take good care of you. Just… remember that.'
Taking a deep breath, Weiss rapped on the door. 'Father,' she said stiffly. 'Father, I know you're in there.'
There was no response.
'Father,' Weiss tried again. 'Father, I know that you are… unhappy with my decision to become a huntress. But I hope that you can at least respect that I'm trying to pave my own way in this world.'
Again, no response.
'But, you know what, Father?' Weiss closed her eyes. 'You are many things, but "perfect" is not one of them. That is where we will be different. Because, unlike Winter, I will escape your shadow. I will do what you never could, and achieve perfection.' She opened her eyes. 'Mark my words today, Father,' she said coldly.
'I will surpass you.'
'Stop treating me like a kid!'
'Stop acting like a kid!'
'Well stop acting like you're perfect!'
You're not. You never will be. Accept it. You're inferior. You always will be.
'I'm not perfect!'
That's right. You're not. You never will be. Accept it. You're inferior. You always will be.
'Not yet,' Weiss hissed. 'But I'm still leagues better than you.'
'So instead of fretting about what you don't have, savour what you do.'
'Ruby, I think you have what it takes to be a good leader.'
'H-huh?' The fifteen-year-old girl reared back in her bed, shocked by what Weiss had said.
'And be not the best leader, but the best person you can be.'
Weiss gave her a small smile. 'Just know that I am going to be the best teammate you will ever have.'
'Hello to you too… so, why're you calling?'
'I…' Weiss froze. The scroll remained glued to her ear as her mind went blank.
'Weiss?' Neptune asked over the line. 'You good?'
'Y-yeah,' Weiss said. 'Just… just um…'
'Anyone would be lucky to be with you.'
'Are you… free to come over to Vale… this weekend?'
'Let's break up.'
Why? What's your reasoning? Am I not good enough? Are you not satisfied by me? Is there something wrong? Wrong with me? If so, I can change! Are you going to leave me alone? Please don't. Why now? Why? Please, just tell me why?!
'Yang, help me with these bags?'
'Sure! No problem.'
'We're graduating, we're graduating!'
Was this room always so empty? A strange feeling welled in Weiss' chest as she gazed around the empty room. The beds no longer hung as bunks. They were on their side and against the wall, leaving the floor to be quite spacious.
It felt so… lonely.
'Okay, our bags are on the trolley. You guys ready to go?'
'Come on, I don't wanna be late!'
'I…' Weiss hesitated.
'Give us a moment,' Blake interrupted. 'We'll be down in a second.'
'Well, don't take too long, okay?'
'Yeah, Team RWBY gotta represent!'
'Will do,' Blake said as the sisters bolted out the door, striding over to close the door behind them. She then turned to the other person in the room. 'Feeling sentimental?' she asked.
Weiss took another glance around the room. 'Yeah,' she said. 'Just a little.'
'You going to be okay?'
'Ruby, you don't have to worry.'
'But I should be worried,' Ruby said. Turning away from Weiss, she poked the knight in the stomach. 'Keep your hands above the waist, ya hear me, "Tubby"?'
'We'll be okay, Ruby,' Weiss said with a soft smile. 'Tell Pyrrha we both say hi.'
'You all set to go?'
'Weiiiiiis,' Ruby sighed as she plopped on her bed. 'I'm not a kid anymore, you know?'
'Of course I know that, you dolt,' Weiss said. 'It's just going to be weird, not seeing you for a couple of years.'
'Well, Yang promised to visit from time to time if she's allowed.' Ruby sat up. 'She is allowed to… right?'
Weiss shrugged. 'It's up to Blake. I just pay them.'
'Oh!' Ruby's eyes shone. 'Then it shouldn't be a problem, then!'
'Not a kid, huh?' Weiss' smile faded. 'Listen, when you're over there, can you… um…?'
'Not another word,' Ruby said, pulling her into a hug. 'Don't worry, I'll look out for him.'
I am alright. I am fine. I am okay.
'So he just leaves in the middle of the night?'
'It would appear so.'
'That stupid freaking…'
I am alright. I am fine. I am okay.
'There's no point in getting angry now.'
'Oh what? So you're defending him?'
'I'm saying that I can see why he did it.'
I am alright. I am fi-
'I'll be here in the morning.'
'Well, look at what that did to her!'
'Yang, calm down.'
'I can't, Blake! She hasn't moved all morning and-!'
-alright. I am fine. I am-
Weiss sat up. Lilac and golden orbs alike turned to face her. Raising her arm, she scrubbed her face with her sleeve, getting rid of dry tear trails.
'Weiss.' Blake reacted first. Kneeling by her bedside, she leaned in closer. 'Are you-?'
'I'm alright,' Weiss said, managing a small smile. She turned her head towards Yang. 'I'm fine.' Shifting the covers off her legs, she slowly struggled to her feet.
'What's wrong?' she asked over the line, scanning through today's report.
'It's…' Ruby hesitated. 'He almost died today.'
Weiss froze. 'What do you mean?'
'We were fighting a horde of Goliath. His squad was getting overwhelmed, and mine was barely hanging on. One of his men managed to push him out of the way, but…'
'… We were able to recover the body.'
'… How's he taking it?'
'Ren's with him now. He's been having episodes of hysteria. He's also been… calling for you.'
'I really wish you'd give me more credit.'
'I…' Weiss looked at all of the paperwork on her desk. In her mind she was cycling through all the meetings and events she had to attend. 'I don't know if I can-'
'I'm not pressuring you to,' Ruby said quickly. 'He's getting calmer. He'll be fine in a few days.'
'Are you sure? I mean I could try-'
'Weiss, we both know that he wouldn't forgive you if you did.'
'Don't worry about me.'
'… You're right. He wouldn't.'
'He'll be okay, Weiss. Don't worry, I'll keep my promise.'
'I'm impressed.' Her father's voice echoed throughout his office.
'Thank you,' she replied curtly.
'However, despite your accomplishments, you have yet to achieve the "perfection" you spoke of all those years ago.'
'I will do what you never could, and achieve perfection.'
'That's…' Weiss looked out the window. 'I've stopped trying.'
'So you admit that you've failed?'
'I'm saying that it's overrated, Father.' Weiss turned back and looked him square in the eye. 'The only mistake I made was thinking achieving perfection would free me from your shadow. Because then I'd have done the one thing you've never been able to do. But that was a mistake on my part. Rather, I should have done the other thing you couldn't do, and just let it go. By walking away, I have escaped you.'
'I will escape your shadow.'
'I cannot give my position to someone who makes excuses. To me, all that you have said has sounded like a big excuse.'
'Perhaps it is an excuse. Or maybe it's just because you can't see the bigger picture because you're still holding on to that flimsy idealisation of perfection. Look at all that I've done in thirteen years that you couldn't do in your entire life.' Weiss approached her father's desk. 'I have accomplished everything you said was impossible to do. I've righted all of the wrongs you said were necessary to commit. I have changed all that you had deemed unchangeable.'
'I will surpass you.'
'I have surpassed you, Father.'
'Weiss? You're early!'
'Sorry. I… I wanted to talk to you before the others got here.'
'What's wrong? Does this have to do with-?'
'Yeah… it does.'
'It's not… awkward for you is it? It's okay if you don't wanna do it. We still have enough time to change it to someone-'
'No, it's not that. I still want to be your Maid of Honour. I just… I just need to… can you just listen to what I have to say?'
'… Okay. I will.'
'He's a… really good guy, Ruby. He made me realise things about myself that have helped me to get where I am. Sure he was a bit of a pain at times but… it was part of his charm, I guess.'
'Yeah… I kinda get what you mean.'
'And um… I… if you take good care of him, then he'll take even better care of you. Just make sure you remember that.'
Side Story: Doorstep Fin
Author's Notes: And that's it for the specials. Thank you very much to all of you who returned to read them. I'm 100% done with the fiction for good, now. No more 'Inch', ahaha.
I wanted to do something different with Weiss' perspective. You got parts of it on the occasional chapter, but I wanted something a bit more. Jaune's perspective allows the reader to get into his mind and see the world of Inch through his eyes and feel what he feels. Blake's perspective in chapter 17 was more of a motif-driven one with "Blakey". Weiss' perspective is written more in the style of Blake's.
The entire story actually takes place on Ruby's doorstep before her Bachelorette party, hence the title as well as the summary. Weiss' perspective also comes in sets of two. The graduating excerpt is used as the story's midpoint and doesn't pair with anything. I wanted to imitate a "train of thought".
There isn't a lot to write with Weiss, as you can see. Unlike Blake, a lot of questions about her have been answered in the main story. That's why this is so much shorter than "The Red Demon". I also didn't want to delve into the "forgotten years" between when she's 28 to when she's 35 too much. As weird as it sounds, Vacuo and the White Fang conflict serve as backdrops. The actual plot has always been about the characters. The conflict is a vessel.
But yeah. I hope this chapter provides closure to those who were dissatisfied with the ending. As for what's in the future for me, I have two more fic ideas. One will be a three-parter released sometime in the next month. The other is a project that GEP has given me the keys to. I may not be able to think as crazily as him, but I hope I can at least live up to his writing moniker.
Anyway, last essay A/N from me on here. Thank you again, and remember to keep it real.