He swept another branch out of his way, ducking around the foliage as he looked around, tracking the footprints as best as he could. His weapon was tucked away but ready at a moment's notice, though he might not need to use it if the rumors were to be believed. The sun was bearing it's full force today which made him all the more thankful for the shades the trees provided.
"Oh come on!"
The tracks ended again. He felt he should've known better than to investigate this of all things. Qrow snorted at the ludicrousness of the idea, he had half a mind to just end his search right here and then. He resented being out here in the Wilds when he could have been in a bar somewhere in the Kingdoms.
"I hate mysteries," he muttered, but this was one he couldn't ignore and if there was even a slight shred of truth to them, then Ozpin would want to know about it and he would need proof. Reaching into his pocket, Qrow pulled out his flask and brought it to his mouth, taking a long swig. He was thankful he remembered to refill it before setting out for the day.
As he trudged on, Qrow stepped into a clearing only to see the first signs of life he had seen all day. Itching to slash something, he placed his hand on the hilt of his weapon, awaiting the charge from the single Beowolf.
Except it didn't. The Grimm stayed stationary, not charging at him like the mindless beast it was but observing him as it sat on it's haunches with its head tilted in curiosity. Curious himself, Qrow slowly approached the soulless creature while keeping his hand on his weapon, prepared to strike.
The Beowolf didn't react, it's movements minimal as it continued to stare at him. Qrow inspected the Grimm intensely. It didn't look any different to any other Beowolf he had seen before, though it seemed a little young as it didn't have it's spikes yet, and it's claws were still small. No, nothing was different except for…
"It's eyes," Qrow whispered, his brow furrowing. Every Grimm, every Grimm had red eyes. A telling sign of impending doom and indiscriminate death, of claws and teeth and the blood of humans or faunus, Grimm had red eyes.
"Why blue?" Qrow asked himself within a foot of the Grimm. It still didn't react, not even as Qrow reached out his arm. Time seemed to slow down to a crawl as his hand approached the Beowolf's head. When he finally touched it, the Beowolf closed it's eyes, it's tongue lolling out contentedly.
"What're you, a dog?" Qrow muttered, thinking of Zwei as he rubbed the Grimm's head. Still, this lead credence to the rumors he had overheard in the area. He knew it was ridiculous as soon as he heard them because only a fool would consider Grimm even remotely friendly. He wanted to blow it off but the man had sounded so sure.
His senses kicked in right then, and he tensed as he knew he was going to be attacked… from the side.
Qrow dodged backwards, his sword drawn as he just barely managed to avoid being grabbed by his attacker. The attacker froze immediately, clearly not expecting to be evaded. Qrow could understand; he would have been caught if he had been any less of an experienced Huntsman.
The figure was humanoid Qrow noticed alarmingly. It's get-up wasn't the most fashionable, covered almost from head to toe in what he had to assume was Grimm's fur. It wore a mask over it's head, hiding blue eyes but he could just barely make out a face. It had a sharpened stick tied to a makeshift belt around the waist.
'No, not a Grimm.' Qrow dismissed the idea quickly. Regardless of colour, those weren't the eyes of a Grimm. He wasn't sure if it was a faunus or a human, but it was a person, most likely a male. He was oddly reminded of his errant sister, who wore a very similar mask.
"Who are you?" Qrow asked cautiously. Friendly Grimm… perhaps this was the person controlling them? The man didn't reply, opting to stare at him silently. Qrow kept his blade out in front of him, ready for another attack. He tensed as the man raised his hand to his mask, lifting it only to reveal a young face and bright blue eyes.
"A kid?" Qrow snorted, smiling despite himself, "I must be getting rusty if a kid like you almost got the jump on me."
The kid raised his other hand, shaking Qrow's flask at him with a taunting grin on his face. Qrow almost dropped his weapon right there.
"What the…" Qrow patted his pockets, not finding his flask anywhere, "You little bastard."
The kid opened it, taking a long drink much to the man's consternation. Then he coughed and sputtered violently as the drink presumably burned his throat. The kid gave the flask a disgusted look, causing Qrow to chuckle.
"Can't handle your drink, huh? Give that back," Qrow said, holding out his hand. The boy tossed the silver flask back at him, watching with disgust as Qrow took another long swig from it.
"Hits the spot," Qrow said, burping loudly, "So tell me kid, is that your semblance? Making fake Grimm?"
"Grimm?" the boy asked, speaking for the first time. Qrow gave him a weird look as he sheathed his weapon. Apart from the initial ambush, the kid hadn't made any aggressive movements so he deemed it safe.
"Yeah, Grimm," he repeated, "You know, the enemy of mankind, beasts of darkness, nice fur rug for your living room?"
The boy didn't look any more enlightened as he furrowed his eyebrows much like Qrow had not too long ago. He looked at the ground as if remembering something.
"Grimm," the boy repeated, sounding out the word. The Beowolf nearby started growling, causing both Qrow and the boy to straighten up. An Ursa lumbered into the clearing through the nearby bush, eyes a glowing red like the Grimm Qrow remembered.
The teenager raised his hand, signalling his companion.
The blue-eyed Beowolf charged at the Ursa upon the boy's command, dodging a paw and pinning the beast to the ground as it bowled it over. The Ursa roared in anger but could do nothing. Qrow watched as the kid walked over, drawing a makeshift wooden knife from his belt.
Instead of killing it like Qrow had expected, he sliced his hand open above the Ursa's head, letting his blood fall onto it. The beast roared in pain, struggling against the Beowolf as it tried in vain to be released.
Qrow's eyes widened and his mouth fell as he gaped at the scene. The Ursa's eyes turned blue and it became totally docile, causing the Beowolf to back off. He looked at the boy in wonder. The kid hadn't activated his aura whatsoever.
"Guess it's not a semblance," Qrow said faintly.
Notes: This is the first of the full-length RWBY fics I have planned. These notes will be kept short for the most part. Update schedule is planned to be once per day until we're caught up to what I have written so far, which is currently enough for 18 more chapters.
Please leave a review to let me know your impressions. See you all tomorrow!