"She does not have a boyfriend," Sun growls again.

"That we know of," Scarlet corrects, smirking at the aggravated look his leader sends him. "She could easily have one and just doesn't talk about him."

Sun pulls a face. "That doesn't make sense!" he protests. "Girls always talk about their boyfriends!" He suddenly pauses, like he's considering just now realizing his own inexperience in the matter. He cuts a glance at Neptune for confirmation. "Right? Girls totally do that."

Neptune gives a lazy shrug, a smirk twisting his lips. "Couldn't tell you," the blue-haired boy drawls. "When I'm with a girl, she's only talking about one boy." He points to himself with a cocky grin.

The rest of the team stares back at him, unimpressed.

"Take a lap," Sage orders the trident-wielder, still stirring his oatmeal. "That was terrible. Even by your standards."

"Maybe she's got a girlfriend," Scarlet suggest with a shrug, looking back to Sun. "How do you know you're even her type?"

Neptune rolls his eyes. "Because he's Sun Wukong, and abs are everyone's type," he replies. "Duh."

Sage snorts and the team turns to him.

"Got something to say, Sage?" Sun challenges, glaring at the taller boy.

"You could just ask her," the enormous swordsman drawls, looking up to treat Sun to a dubiously raised eyebrow. "You know, like a normal person."

"Yeah, Sun," Scarlet agrees, smiling cheerfully across the table. "You're pretty good at impersonating a normal person, right?"

Sun narrows his eyes, but before he can speak, Neptune's smacked him on the shoulder.

"It's Weiss!" he hisses, eyes going wide as he slaps Sun's shoulder again. "Be cool!"

"Dude, you're the only one not being cool," Sun insists, batting his partner's hands away. He looks up to see the heiress step lightly into the cafeteria. "Want me to call her over?"

"Oh my god, yes," Scarlet says, immediately straightening. "Neptune always acts extra stupid around her."

"How can you tell?" Sage mutters, looking up to smirk as Neptune throws him a dirty look.

"Ha ha," the tanned boy snaps. "I'm Sage Ayana and don't get frazzled by anything or anyone because I don't have a soul."

"I think the phrase you're looking for is petty insecurities," the hulking boy answers. He turns his head. "Hey, Weiss!"

His deep voice cuts across the cafeteria chatter and immediately catches the girl's attention. She glances over and Sage waves a hand. She nods and strides over to them

"Dude!" Neptune hisses. "I wasn't ready!"

Sage shrugs. "Sorry," he replies in what is perhaps the least apologetic voice Neptune has ever heard.

"Heya, Weiss," Sun greets her easily as she takes a stand at end of their table. "What's up?"

"Have you guys seen Pyrrha?" she asks, looking around the cafeteria.

Sun shakes his head. "Nope, sorry." He tilts his head, assessing the hard line of the heiress' mouth. "Everything okay?"

She works her jaw, icy blue eyes still searching the room. "We sparred earlier, and got on to some…other topics," she cuts a sideways look at Neptune before looking away again—the action so quick it might have been imagined. "I said some things I probably shouldn't have, and wanted to explain myself."

Scarlet quirks an eyebrow. "You mean apologize?" he verifies.

Weiss shoots him an annoyed look. "What? No!" She crosses her arms, her chin jutting up defensively. "I didn't say anything wrong, just maybe things she doesn't want to hear!"

Sun grimaces, wondering just what Weiss had said to upset Pyrrha so much. "Yeah, well, normal people usually expect an apology after that," he explains.

Weiss huffs in frustration. "Why is everyone so sensitive?" she demands. "She asked for my opinion and so I gave it! Why ask if she doesn't want to be told?"

"I think sometimes you can come on a little strong, Angel," Neptune offers, patting the space next to him. Arms still crossed stubbornly, Weiss drops onto the bench stiffly, scowling at the table.

"Strong?" Scarlet quotes, pulling a face. "Her tough love could kill someone!"

Sage elbows the swordsman solidly in the gut and he gurgles out a pained apology.

"What exactly happened?" Sun asks, turning in his seat to get a good look at the heiress. "You just said other topics."

Weiss tosses her ponytail over her shoulder, still fixing the tabletop with a moody glare.

"Pyrrha wanted to talk about Jaune," she reports sourly.

Uneasy looks are exchanged amongst the boys. This is not the kind of conversation they'd been looking for.

"Gee," Sun remarks, trying for casual and missing by yards. "That, uh, that must've been weird."

Neptune throws him an accusatory glare over the top of Weiss' head, who is still not looking at any of them.

Weird? the trident-wielder mouths angrily. What does that mean?

Sun spreads his hands in exasperation. I don't know! he mouths back.

"It wasn't supposed to be," Weiss mutters. "I just thought she'd be a little more understanding."

"Not to take sides, but I think Pyrrha is one of the most understanding people you could find," Sage replies. He meets Weiss' answering glare calmly. "Just my opinion."

"Well, she's not," Weiss snaps. "Because if she were, she wouldn't have gotten so offended when I told her Jaune doesn't actually like me—"

Scarlet rears away in surprise. "What?" he demands. "That shoddy swordsman? He totally likes you!"

"Let her finish," Sage tells him.

Weiss huffs with annoyance. "He doesn't!" she insists. "It's an infatuation. Let's say I agreed to date Jaune."

Neptune frowns. "Let's not."

She rolls her eyes. "He'd be sick of me in a week. I'm not stupid—our personalities are as incompatible as they come. He's in love with the idea of me, not who I really am." She sighs, looking away. "I thought Pyrrha—of all people—would understand that."

Sun spares her an apprehensive glance, unsure if he should push the issue. "Why should Pyrrha know that better than anyone?" he asks.

Weiss frowns at him. "Because our situations are very similar," she states. "Obviously."

"Enlighten us," Sage requests, folding his arms and studying her.

Another sigh. Weiss crosses her legs daintily beneath the table as she stares down the green-haired boy.

"People like Pyrrha because she's good," she begins. "And, mind you, I'm not saying this applies to everyone. Of course there are plenty of people here who adore her simply because she's a nice person. But lots of people just want her attention because she's a celebrity."

Sun nods his agreement. "Right. So what's the problem?"

She treats him to a dubious look. "How many people do you think have asked me out, or tried to get close to me, only because they wanted some part of my family's fortune?"

Sun's eyebrows rise to his hairline. "Damn. Do people actually do that?"

"All the time," she avows, folding her arms tightly across her chest. "And the ones who didn't want my money were afraid of my name." She hesitates, like she's just now catching up with her words, and colors slightly, looking away. "Though I don't think Pyrrha has that problem," she murmurs.

"So you're saying people only like you and Pyrrha because of your status or whatever," Scarlet says. "Is that it?"

"What do you mean, is that it?" Weiss repeats angrily. "Wouldn't that infuriate you?"

"Where does Jaune fit in to all of this?" Neptune asks, silencing Scarlet with a look.

"I'm traditionally attractive," Weiss explains archly. "I'm pretty, I come from a powerful family, I have millions of lien to my name, and I'm a highly skilled swordsman."

"Don't sell yourself so short there, Weiss," Sun mutters.

"You think Pyrrha should understand what it's like to liked for something other than your true self," Sage says, glancing up at Weiss. "Is that right?"

She nods, a pleased smile curving her lips. "Finally, someone gets it," she says, reclining back in her chair.

"You're wrong," he tells her.

She starts in her seat, scandalized. "Excuse me?"

"I don't want to belittle your childhood," Sage says quietly. "I'm not an idiot. You're a Schnee, I'm sure it was hell. But Pyrrha's problems don't come from a family name. They come because people simply think she's too good for them."

"Weiss…you're not quite as…intimidating as Pyrrha is," Neptune explains delicately, eyeing her outraged expression. "You carry your family's name, yeah, but…I mean, you aren't as scary as your dad, or your sister, or anything like that."

Scarlet nods his agreement. "Back in Mistral, people thought Pyrrha was a god." He shrugs. "I don't think they're wrong, to be fair."

"You can afford the luxury of being picky because you know people will always keep trying to get your attention," Sage says evenly. "Pyrrha isn't like that. She has to work twice as hard as everyone just to get people to talk to her like she's a normal human being."

"But, I…." Weiss trails off, for once caught without an argument.

"You're out of a lot of people's league," Sun explains as gently as he can. He pities the heiress, in a way. "But Pyrrha's not even on the same playing field. People don't even bother. With you, at least, they think they stand a chance."

"That's why she's so sensitive about Jaune," Sage murmurs, still staring straight at Weiss. "She sees your dismissal of him as a serious offense. Pyrrha would kill for that kind of attention."

Weiss—feeling threatened and vulnerable by their soft words and undeniable logic—lashes out.

"So now I'm horrible for not accepting every single person who shows the slightest bit of interest in me?" she demands hotly.

Scarlet actually laughs. "'Course not," he tells her. "You just wanted to know what Pyrrha was thinking, and we told you."

"She and us go way back," Sun explains. He tips Weiss a wink, trying to lighten the mood. "Vale's not bad, but Mistral pride dies hard."

"And for what it's worth, Weiss," Sage adds, leaning back in his seat as he peers across the cafeteria. "I don't think you need to worry about it too much."

Frowning, Weiss turns to follow his gaze. Pyrrha and Jaune enter the cafeteria together. Jaune's apparently in the middle of a story, using ridiculous gestures as he narrates his tale and prompting Pyrrha's clear laughter. Jaune beams as she laughs, clearly pleased with himself. Weiss notices they brush shoulders as they make their way over to a table.

"Ah, young love," Scarlet coos, resting his elbows on the table and setting his chin in his hands.

Sage swipes out with his arm, knocking the swordsman's elbows off-kilter and prompting his chin to crash against the table in a flurry of shrill swears.

Weiss looks to Neptune, who blinks at the sudden attention.

"I should go apologize," she says quietly. "Shouldn't I?"

He smiles warmly at her. "You're not as cold as you think you are, Angel," he replies softly.

She flushes at his praise before rising from her seat. "Well, then I guess I'm off." She looks round the table, suddenly unsure what to say. "Erm, thank you for all of your help."

Sun gives her a two-fingered salute. "Don't mention it," he says, smiling. "It was nice talking to you. We should hang out for real some time."

Scarlet nods his agreement. "Yeah! We could go to the pool!"

Neptune levels a look of absolute hate at the swordsman. "Scarlet, I swear to god, if you bring up that pool one more time, no one's gonna find your body."

Sage lifts his hand in farewell. "If you need us, you know where to find us," he tells her, and she nods, touched. She turns to leave, but only makes it a few steps before she stops.

"Oh, and by the way Sun," she turns back, offering him a small but undeniably genuine smile. "Blake doesn't have a boyfriend. And she likes you a lot." She lifts her chin, an imperious glint entering her eye. "You should probably do something about that."

Sun flushes darkly at her words, stammering out a response, when Scarlet cuts him off.

"Oi! Weiss!" Scarlet calls, grinning Neptune shoots him a look of pure betrayal. "Do you have a boyfriend?"

The heiress colors at this, hesitating before shaking her head. "Um, no," she replies. "No, I don't."

The swordsman beams. "Great! Cheers!"

She gives an uncertain wave before turning to leave.

"Sounds like you've got a double date in your future," Sage remarks to the two partners who are both more than a little red in the face.

Scarlet chortles. "My money's on the girls, honestly," he replies. "There's no way these two can get it together."


I love Team SSSN. Honestly. People are like "why do you always write about Team SSSN?"

Because their dynamic is fantastic.

Anyway, this is a thing. I guess it's vaguely shippy? I don't know. Consider it my V-Day contribution to the fandom.

(I will write about SSSN knowing Pyrrha until I die okay it's real trust me)