Pretty much pulling Gem history out of my butt for fun. But if you like AUs or headcanon making, this is the story for you. Each chapter is made of 3 smaller segments, and the story as it is now is split into two 3 part halves.
It covers a lot of Ruby/Sapphire relationship building, but the second half also has a lot of focus on building Rose, Pearl, and Amethyst's relationships.
They met for the first time somewhere around the early days of the war. It was long before any serious battle took place. Being what they were- small, with gems in such a dangerous spot- they were at a disadvantage. They were not fighters who were typically useful on the front lines. They were also low in the social order, making it difficult to contribute. Despite all this, the loving figure of Rose Quartz, who was the leader of the vast rebellion of the Homeworld, believed in them. She believed in all the small gems.
"On Earth," Rose Quartz said, "you have a new start. You are powerful here." It didn't matter where your gem was, how many points it had, or even if you had no weapon. You could help in some way.
So, they met for the first time listening to their new leader speak. Rose was confident in them, and it gave strength to all the gathered gems. It especially empowered the little ones, who had been told since their creation that they were weak and powerless.
They were the rebellion, and they would stop their race from drilling into the planet. The Kindergaten was still very active, and young gems were still being grown from the sedimentary rock. "We few Gems," said the goddess, "together have the combined will to drive the Homeworld forces out."
Ruby tried to hide her tears. The little red gem was a fighter. She knew it since she crawled out of the cliff she was formulated from. This was where she belonged. So long she had been shoved around by the more well sized and influential gems. It was her turn to give them all the bird. The inhabitants of this planet were like her- pushed this way and that by the commanding aliens. With Rose she could save them, and in turn save herself.
In her watery red eyes she noted the turn of a head. In the crowd of ramrod and awed gems was a small dot of bright blue. The color shifted among the otherwise attentive group, glancing over its shoulder and striking Ruby. She rubbed the wetness out of her eyes quickly. That little gem had looked at her.
At the end of the speech Ruby hardly thought to clap, too infatuated by the lavish frills of a shimmering dress to have realized Rose stopped speaking. She shook her head and clapped. Scatter brained that she was, she would scold herself harshly were she to not openly show her love and admiration of the big pink figure.
Today they would rest. Many Gems had taken great measures to escape with their leader, and even though they got energy from their stones, they too needed recuperation time. The sun was setting outside the walls of their hidden cave. Tomorrow plans would be set into motion.
There was to be no separation of social class here. Even so it seemed that gems of equal power flocked with one another, almost instantly sticking together after the speech had ended. Ruby was lost in the sea of legs and feet. There were few gems like herself, perhaps too cowardly to leave the control of the Homeworld. She found that the few small gems in the crowd did not deviate from the example the others set; they gathered in their own chittering circles as well..
Ruby skulked away from them. The crowed was too much, now. She was not interested in the cliques. She walked out of the interior of the makeshift base, the gaping mouth of the cave opened up to the morning beach. The planet she stepped upon was still just a child. The sand on her boots had only formed a day ago compared to all the galaxy she had seen.
"Where are you going?" asked a sweet voice. It rang out as if made of pure music, startling the red gem.
Ruby twisted around in fright, and let out a sigh. It was only another low class Gem like herself. Her eyes widened upon realizing that the Gem but a few feet away had been the smudge of deep blue that looked back at her. She wore a gown so full of lace and waves that it almost mimicked the newborn sea itself.
"Oh. I thought you were someone else." Ruby admitted. She averted her eyes nervously and walked on forward, further towards the shore. Rays of light spilled over the calming waves, highlighting it in brilliant golds and oranges.
"Sorry." smiled the figure behind her. She caught up to Ruby, which only made the volatile thing more anxious.
"Why are you following me?"
She shrugged. "To be honest, I didn't much care to sit around in prayer circles either."
Ruby stood close to the water now, the foam stretching up to meet her boots but never touching them. She crossed her arms, uncomfortable. "I came out here to be alone." she grumbled.
"Me, too." claimed the other.
Ruby gave her an annoyed look, but it melted away quickly. She couldn't see this Gem's eyes. Ruby glanced over her attire again, then back up. She huffed. "What are you?"
Ruby nodded, looking back out at the glimmering ocean. "Ruby."
"I know, I saw your gem." Sapphire sat down in the sand, knees to her chest. You could see the generous ruffles and layers where her dress barely came up.
There was a long silence before Ruby mumbled "I see why she loves this backwater planet."
"The color of the sea matches my dress!" chimed Sapphire happily. "Don't you think so?"
The sudden joy of her bell of a voice threw Ruby off. Here she was trying to get some alone time, and up comes this chipper, frilly, talkative gem to take away her solitude.
"I'm going back inside." Ruby hissed, scowling. She stomped back into the base, leaving Sapphire to stare out across the water alone.
She found that she and Sapphire were easily matched when it came to combat. They were both very physical. They had been placed into a group of beginners command by a close friend and soldier of Rose Quartz's. She judged their fighting skills, gauged their individual personalities, their ability to obey orders, and so on.
Compared to the other Gems who were also made to fight in front of this stiff, pale Pearl, they fought the longest. It was expected that when two same ranking Gems who also happen to have the same weaponry sparred, that they would usually always be equal.
However, Ruby found herself dazed and in the dirt after she had locked her gloved fist with the other's. Something had coursed into her physical expression and sent a painful white jolt to her gem. Before she could stop compulsively jerking, Sapphire socked her right in the face. She groaned spitefully from where she now sat on the dusty ground. If she had blood her nose would have been oozing.
"Enough." cut the snobbish voice of their superior. "That was... interesting. Strong for your size. Go sit down." She waited for the two to begrudgingly move out of the circle the group was using for an arena. She hummed. "You two," the tall Gem pointed at a frail, nervous Gem and a thicker, much more angry Gem. "let's see how you fare."
"Did that hurt?" asked Sapphire once they returned to their place in the circle. They sat together in the grass, the soft greenery was comfortably warmed by the sun.
Ruby crossed her arms anxiously. "The hell it did." she replied. It was to sound irritated, but ended up more of a whine. She rubbed the ruby in her palm, frowning.
"Sorry," Sapphire continued "I never warned you. We don't exaaactly have the same weapon. I have electric gauntlets."
Ruby looked over to glare at her, but Sapphire was smiling weakly, asking forgiveness. Instead Ruby melted a little, and twirled her head the other way quickly. "Well... that's okay."
They were quiet the rest of the match. The two eventually ended up assigned to Pearl's squad along with six other Gems.
Pearl had assigned them to herself because they were so alike in skill. Both were small. Both used their fists. Both were quick and could get back up after a serious hit. They differed in personality alone. The skilled Gem knew what under her guidance and the softer demeanor of Sapphire, the rough Ruby would be able to fight in the rebellion alongside her.
They hadn't long to bond with their team, as every day more and more of the Earth was marked off for later excavation. Those in allegiance to the Diamonds monitored the single Kindergarten they had active, as well as exploring the planet. They would go in swarms or little groups, looking for the best spots to puncture in the future. Canyons or caves were the ideal Kindergartens.
The Diamond Gems would often come in contact with primitive humans, just barely on the edge of settling down. They were dark and earthy as the planet they crouched upon, and the Gems had no mercy on lower life forms. Bugs would be squashed, animals who got too close would be killed, and humans who didn't take heed to keep their distance would be flattened. Gems were only concerned for other Gems. Organic life was useless.
With the passage of time Rose Quartz was increasingly worried. She kept her head about her, yet feared the eventual retaliation of the Homeworld Gems. They knew the rebels existed, but they'd yet to scour for them and strike. Rose was suspicious. While she sent out scouting groups, watches, and spies, she'd sometimes disappear for hours. Ruby thought that Pearl knew where their glorious leader went to, but refrained from saying a word.
Pearl would split her squad up into fours. She tended to pair Ruby and Sapphire together. "You two will make a power fusion," she told them "so keeping close is critical in case of emergencies." It always made Ruby blush when she said that, but she didn't let her emotion show on her face.
Before her was a great green field. The hills rippled on for miles upon miles. The area was connected via warp pad. After a small supply ship piloted by a handful of divergent Gems finally arrived to the rebel's of Earth, they were able to build a connecting pad in their cave. They were foot soldiers before as Diamond Gem's controlled the world's few warp pads. Movement was hard without warp pads to connect you to the corners of the earth. The expansive pasture Ruby was assigned to had been disconnect from the rebels before now.
It pissed her off. It pissed her off and made her want to punch everything. She was a good fighter, but Pearl had her watching the warp pad. This warp pad wasn't even an important one. It wasn't important to their cause, in her opinion. The location was nothing special. The Diamond Gems had not used it since they began keeping an eye on it.
The hills about her were void of life, other than the butterflies that wafted between flowers. She leaned against the cold side of the pedestal, staring up at the cloudless sky. It was hot. There was the delightful ring of the pad before it transported its contents. Ruby backed away and watched the blinding blue light stream from the surface, soon evaporating.
"HALT!" Ruby yelled, ready to bash someone's face in. She was tired of never getting to hit anyone. Her gauntlets summoned, she assumed position. "Who goes-? Oh!"
Sapphire appeared, her feet gently touching the floor of the warp pad as if she had been floating before. "You should keep better track of the time." said the blue Gem, stepping off.
Ruby's gauntlets fizzled away and she visibly slumped with disappointment. "And why do you say that?"
Sapphire pointed up at the sun. "Because your shift is over. See? Look up." she chucked Ruby's chin twice to get her to lift her eyes.
"Oh, yeah." Ruby realized, not making eye contact.
Sapphire began to hum, and reached down into a pocket on her dress. She was clad in something much shorter with less frills, which allowed for easier movement. Ruby watched her curiously. The blue Gem pulled her fist back out and opened her palm. There were plump ebony berries in her hand, with a few blots of red where some of the many drupelets had popped.
"What's this?" asked Ruby.
"Rose gave them to me yesterday. She said a human gave some to her. They're native berries, organic material that the humans eat."
Ruby blinked and scrunched her nose. "Ew!"
Sapphire in turn stuck out her tongue humorously and ate one. Ruby shuddered. They didn't need to eat, but sometimes she saw Gems eating foods they found, anyways. Typically she would see them pick up hard fruits from thick trees, which were called nuts or acorns. They would crack them and eat the insides. Ruby was otherwise not familiar with native foods or berries.
"Try one, they're good."
Ruby looked a little sick. "Do I have to?"
Sapphire shook her head. "Well, no." she stuck her hand out to Ruby, two juicy berries still resting there. "But I think you should at least take a bite. Please? It will be fun!"
Ruby softened when she looked up at her friend's face. Finally she sighed and took one, biting it in half and chewing like she'd puke. "It's not so bad." she commented. "Still kinda gross. So fleshy!"
Sapphire giggled. "You should get back before you get in trouble."
The red Gem straightened, crushing the uneaten half of the berry in her palm. "That's right!" she exclaimed. "I got d-distracted!"
Before Ruby could hop onto the warp pad, Sapphire took Ruby's un-gemmed hand and put the last berry into it. "For later." she smiled.
Ruby, flustered, nodded and slurred something incomprehensible before she left.