Commission for overseerorm! This is a sequel fic to A Walk In The Park and Ice Cream In The Winter. Normal life AU, Neo is mute and dating Yang.
If you like my work, you can support me on as Kiria Alice!
Disclaimer: I do not own RWBY.
As soon as the alarm clock started beeping, Neo was up and ready to silence it.
She'd been waiting for today for a while now.
With summer well on its way, everyone had just finished school, herself included.
And of course, so had her girlfriend.
She felt the last time she'd seen Yang for a significant amount of time had been months ago on their winter break, when they'd walked to the frozen lake together, and Neo had gotten sleepy enough for Yang to carry her back.
Since then, their dates had been restricted to weekends, when neither of them had schoolwork to worry about. And though they got to go out at least once a week, and texted daily, Neo was finding herself craving more time with Yang.
Thankfully, now she'd have an entire season.
She jumped out of bed, grabbed some clothes, and hurried into the bathroom to get ready. She could still hear Roman snoring in his room across the hall, and Neo didn't want to wake him if she didn't have to.
After freshening up, she pulled on the clothes she'd grabbed – a light, white sundress splattered with pale pink pastel flowers. She stepped into a pair of brown flats, pulled a brush through her hair a few times, then grabbed a wide, white sunhat from her hamper, a fuzzy pink feather sticking out of one side.
She hurried downstairs, prepared herself a quick breakfast of toast and a muffin, then grabbed her purse, phone, and lacy pink parasol. She wrote Roman a note and left it on the kitchen table, then was on her way.
The day was warm and inviting, a pleasant breeze caressing her skin from the very moment she stepped outside. Even when she was out of luck on rainier days, Yang's house was only a hop, skip, and a jump away. If the weather was especially bad, Yang always came to her.
Presently, she twirled her parasol in glee as she skipped up the steps to Yang's front door. Neo paused and rang the doorbell, then waited.
A moment later, a familiar woman with short brown hair wearing a floral apron over her clothes greeted her.
"Good morning, Neo!" Summer beamed. "Yang isn't ready just yet, but please come in."
Neo dipped her head in thanks and took her up on the offer. She closed her parasol and leaned it against the wall, just as the sound of barking reached her ears.
Zwei came pelting over to greet her, jumping up in excitement. Neo reached down to pat his head.
A moment later, Ruby walked into the room and perked up when she saw their guest.
"Oh, hi Neo!"
Neo straightened up and signed her a greeting.
"Yang just woke up. She'll probably be a little slow, for a couple of reasons." She looked away briefly, as if she'd wanted to say more, but decided against it. "She's probably just tired because school was crazy the last few days. But at least it's over now!"
Neo nodded in understanding.
Ruby invited her to have a seat on the couch and offered her a cup of tea, but Neo kindly refused. Ruby called up the stairs to inform her older sister that Neo was here to motivate Yang to get moving.
Zwei and Ruby kept the girl company on the couch as they communicated casually for a few minutes. As soon as Neo heard footsteps limping down the stairs, she jumped up.
Yang looked as though she'd just thrown on whatever clothes she'd touched first, which happened to be a ruffled pair of shorts and a lopsided tank-top. Her hair was still messy and her eyes were only half open, but she put on a grin as she reached the bottom of the stairs.
Neo rushed over to her, wasting no time in throwing her arms around Yang's shoulders and kissing her, despite her morning breath. Yang was taken aback by her enthusiasm, it seemed, because it took her a moment to reciprocate.
Once Neo pulled back, she signed to her girlfriend quickly.
Good morning, Yang! I'm ready to have our date today!
Yang cracked her neck, blinking a few times.
"Right. Same here. Just lemme eat something first, 'kay? Sorry to make you wait."
It's all right.
Yang didn't make her wait long. She scarfed down a few spoonfuls of cereal and stepped into some yellow flip-flops, then beckoned Neo toward the door. Taiyang called to her from the kitchen.
"Have fun, kiddo!"
"Yeah," Ruby said, stepping in to hug her sister. "Take it easy, okay?"
Yang sighed and patted her sister's back.
Neo's smile faded as she watched the two of them. They both sounded... a little sad, and she couldn't understand why.
But a moment later, she and Yang were headed out the door for their first date in over a week.
Yang held the parasol for them as she always did, making sure to lean it towards her girlfriend. As they walked, Neo started signing to her.
So where should we go today? We could go see a movie, like that one you'd mentioned before. The one with the talking rabbit. Or we could go to the park, or the zoo! It's a beautiful day. We could even go for another walk around the lake since it won't be frozen over now. We could get ice cream, too. I know you like eating it more in the summer. What do you think?
She waited a moment as they continued walking. But when Yang didn't say anything, Neo peered curiously up at her.
Usually, Yang would always look at Neo, to catch whatever she might sign to her. But today, Yang was just staring ahead of herself rather blankly.
Neo reached down to tug on her hand gently, getting her attention.
"Huh? Oh, sorry. Were you saying something? I'm still a little out of it, I guess. Sorry, could you repeat all that?"
Neo's eyebrows furrowed in concern.
Yang was always excited to be with her, just as Neo was. Of all the times they'd gone out together over the months, Yang was always ready to see what Neo had to tell her. This was the first time she'd ever missed anything Neo had to say.
She was a little worried.
Yang, are you sick? Do you feel all right? If today is a bad day, we can wait. Maybe you should go back to sleep for today.
"No, no! It's fine," Yang assured her. "Like I said, I was just spacing out. I'm not sick, promise." She leaned down to kiss the top of Neo's head. "Now what were you saying?"
Feeling a little better, Neo repeated her signing, though she couldn't shake the nagging feeling that something else was wrong.
That feeling persisted throughout the day. Yang seemed awfully distracted, no matter what they did or where they went.
They saw an early movie, and every time Neo looked at her for a reaction of some kind, Yang was looking away, not even at the screen. When the film was over and Neo asked her what she'd thought of it, Yang simply shrugged and admitted she hadn't been paying attention.
When they went to get ice cream, Yang forgot to order for Neo and had to quickly ask the man again. While they ate, she was so distracted she dropped her cone into her lap. Neo helped clean her up, still worried about her.
After that, they went to walk around the lake, but again, every time Neo tried to sign her something, Yang wasn't paying attention.
When it happened again, Neo stopped walking and held onto Yang's arm to keep her from moving. She bore her heterochromatic eyes up into lavender, now earnestly concerned.
Yang put the parasol down for a moment so she could pull Neo into a hug.
"Sorry... maybe we should just go back..."
Neo nodded into her shoulder and kissed her cheek.
They walked back, Yang holding the parasol in one hand, with her other resting at the small of Neo's back.
They arrived back at Yang's place much earlier than anyone had expected, themselves included. Yang offered to play some board and card games with Neo and Ruby, since she didn't want to make Neo go home when they were supposed to be together today.
But even as they played, Yang wasn't as vibrant as she typically was. She didn't laugh as much or make as many jokes.
Neo realized she herself wasn't smiling as much anymore either. She'd been so ecstatic this morning at the prospect of seeing Yang again and getting to spend time with her. But Yang didn't seem so thrilled.
Once they'd finished their current round of cards, Yang stood and excused herself to the bathroom. As soon as she'd left the room, Neo put down her cards and sent Ruby a desperate look.
Is she okay? Did I make her upset or something? She's been like this all day and I don't know what to do.
Ruby saw the distress in Neo's eyes and quickly slid closer to her.
"Oh gosh, no, no! It's not you at all!" she whispered. "Don't worry, Neo. Yang's just... well, it's a rough time of year for her, is all. Her birthday's kinda coming up and well... she doesn't like it. That's all."
Neo blinked, highly puzzled by this information. It made her realize that she really didn't know Yang's birthday. Frowning, she begged Ruby to elaborate.
Why doesn't she like her birthday?
Ruby bit her lip, glanced at the bathroom door, then turned back to Neo.
"Well... You know Summer is my mom, right? Yang's mom passed away when she was born. So Yang never really liked her birthday because of that. She doesn't like to celebrate it. Actually, she never has. We always offer to throw her a party, but she never wants one. It's tough for her..."
Neo's shoulders slumped, and her heart sank as well.
She'd never known her real parents, but at the very least, Roman had learned her birthday when he'd adopted her. Neo had never felt the need to know of her real parents because she loved Roman so much.
But she understood that Yang's situation was very different.
Her chest started to ache a little bit, and she felt something stinging behind her eyes. Ruby must've noticed, because she quickly put a hand on Neo's shoulder.
"Hey, don't cry. I mean, I know it's really sad. I cry about it sometimes, too. But once her birthday passes, Yang always cheers up again and goes back to normal. So don't worry. She'll just be like this for a few more days. But she'll be okay."
Neo heard the bathroom door open, and she quickly wiped her eyes, sending a quick glance over to Ruby to thank her for telling her everything.
Neo stayed a while longer, then took her leave in the evening. She kissed Yang again, requesting that her girlfriend try and get some sleep, promising to text her once she got home.
Usually, Yang would walk her back since it wasn't far at all. But Neo insisted she would be fine on her own this time, and urged Yang to rest.
Yang apologized again for how spacey she'd been today, but Neo waved it off to let her know she didn't mind.
She hurried back home that evening, already forming an idea in the back of her mind.
Yang felt awful.
The alarm clock continued beeping and beeping beside her bed, and she let it, not caring enough to move to silence it just yet.
The morning outside was sunny and bright judging by the light pushing into her room. But she didn't feel energized at all. She hadn't all week.
She wanted to apologize for brushing Neo off a few days ago, but she hadn't gotten the chance to, as of yet. It might have to wait a few more days, still.
Yang would make it up to her soon.
Just... not today.
If she could have her way, she'd stay in bed all day today and just sleep. But the sound of her alarm had woken Ruby by now, who mumbled and rolled over on the top bunk.
Normally, she would've complained for Yang to silence her phone. But this morning, Ruby recalled right away what day it was.
Slowly, she climbed out of bed, rubbing her eyes and giving a tiny yawn until her feet were on the floor. She looked down at her sister, who was lying on her back, staring at the ceiling.
When Yang realized she'd been discovered already awake, she sat herself up. Ruby tried to sound as casual as possible, not wanting to draw attention to the date if she didn't have to.
The blonde girl tried to return her smile, but it didn't last long.
Though Ruby had learned over the years that telling Yang "happy birthday!" only ever seemed to make her unhappy, she'd come up with her own way of showing her support and her love on this tough day. Without a word, she sat in Yang's bed with her and wrapped her arms around her big sister, pulling her into a tight embrace.
Sighing, Yang returned the gesture as her way of saying thanks.
After a minute, Ruby pulled away.
"Come on. Let's go have breakfast."
Taiyang and Summer also knew very well that Yang didn't particularly like her birthday. So instead of saying the usual things they might want to say on their daughter's birthday, they also remained quiet.
But they'd prepared Yang's favorite meal for breakfast: blueberry pancakes with bacon and eggs. That was their silent way of wishing her a happy birthday.
Yang showed her thanks to them by eating every last bite.
Once she was finished, she headed into the living room, planning on staying home to take it easy today.
That was when Ruby steeled herself and tugged on her sister's sleeve.
"Hey, Yang? Blake and Weiss and me were wondering if you'd wanna go to Weiss' house to watch some movies together or something. Just for a little while. What do you say?"
Yang glanced at her little sister. Ruby was always trying so hard to make her feel better on this day. More often than not, Yang refused her little sister's offers.
But now, she was only asking to go to Weiss' house for a few hours. Yang felt she could handle that.
She stood up from the couch before she could even turn the TV on.
"All right. I'm in."
Ruby perked up like Zwei did whenever she picked up his favorite fetching ball.
"Really? Oh, great! I'll text Weiss right now!"
Yang retreated to their bedroom to grab some nicer clothes, just a casual t-shirt and some shorts.
After she'd changed, she ventured over to her dresser. She knelt down and pulled open the bottommost drawer, then started pawing through the clothes there. She moved aside old sweaters and pajamas that were too small for her anymore, but she'd decided to keep for sentimental values.
In the very back corner of the drawer was a small purple outfit.
They were the very first clothes Yang had ever been put into as an infant.
Her mother had never even gotten to see her wear them. She'd died when Yang had only been wrapped in a small blanket, wailing in Raven's arms.
Yang could feel the sting of tears behind her eyes, but she didn't cry.
Reaching for the little clothes, she unfolded them, revealing a tiny pink box.
Her mother had bought this for her long before Yang had been born. Taiyang had told his daughter the story when Yang got old enough to understand:
"Your mom was going to give this to you on your thirteenth birthday. That's what she'd told me."
And that had been the day her father had handed her the little box and told her the story.
But even on her thirteenth birthday, when Raven had been planning on giving the box to Yang herself, Yang couldn't bear to open it. She didn't open it the year after either, or the year after that.
Even now, seven years later, Yang still couldn't bring herself to open that gift.
She picked up the little pink box and cradled it to her chest. Even if she couldn't open it, she always kissed it at the very least.
A kiss for her mother, who had died making sure Yang would live.
She only opened this drawer and pulled out this box once a year for the very same reason.
Yang cupped the box in her palm and put away all of the clothes once more, then closed the drawer.
From there, she stood and selected a small purse to bring with her today, which she slipped her mother's present into. If she ever did go out on her birthday, she'd made it a habit to bring that little pink box along with her every time.
Just then, Ruby started calling for her to see if she was ready.
Yang wiped her eyes, then hurried to the front door.
. . .
As the two sisters left the house and began walking through the neighborhood, Yang couldn't help but remember how she'd more or less ignored her own girlfriend the last time they'd been together.
Ruby had said that only Blake would be there at Weiss' place today, but evidently, Neo wouldn't be. Yang decided she'd at the very least text her girlfriend later to apologize and make plans to meet up again soon.
Ruby was awfully chatty as they walked. She always tended to gab on a bit, but Yang felt that today it was a bit excessive as she commented on every single flower or lawn ornament they passed by. Maybe she was just feeling awkward around Yang, given what day it was.
The blonde was just beginning to think her sister's chittering was borderline suspicious when Weiss' mansion came into view.
"Oh!" Ruby cut herself off on what she'd been saying about a caterpillar on a nearby bush. "Look, we're here! Let's go, come on!"
Before Yang could say anything, Ruby dashed forward across the path that led to the mansion's door and knocked. Yang followed a little more slowly, her hands in her pockets and her shoulders slouching.
Ruby was bouncing up and down in her spot as if she were about to burst. Yang gave her a look.
"Ruby, what the heck's gotten into you?"
Just then, the door opened from the inside.
And Weiss wasn't the only person there to greet them.
Blake was there too, of course, but so were several of Yang's other friends: Jaune, Pyrrha, Ren, Nora...
All of them, Ruby included, cheered out to her in unison.
"Happy birthday, Yang!"
The joyful chant was accompanied by Nora's enthusiastic blowing of a colorful, plastic celebration horn as she tossed confetti all around. Weiss scolded her under her breath, demanding she clean up the mess.
Yang was still in shock from the surprise of seeing everyone here for her sake. Her wide eyes were still traveling around to look at all of their faces, her jaw agape.
And then she spotted one final person, standing timidly behind Blake.
As soon as Yang met Neo's eyes, her girlfriend smiled and signed a message for her.
Happy birthday, Yang!
For a moment, Yang said nothing.
Her friends and sister stood there, all smiles and merriment for her as they waited for some kind of reaction. Yang shook her head, but when she looked again, none of this disappeared.
She realized they were waiting for her to say something.
"Um... you guys..."
But Ruby, who'd been bouncing up and down all this time in a mixture of excitement and nervousness, couldn't hold herself back anymore, and she blurted out.
"I'm sorry! I mean I know you don't like big parties and stuff, but Neo really really wanted to do this for you and we all wanted to do it for you too and we just want you to be happy, Yang, please don't be mad!"
The blonde girl actually almost laughed.
"Mad? Ruby, are you nuts? How could I ever be mad when you guys... when you... heh, aw damn it..." A wobbly smile broke out across her lips, and before she knew it, the tears were overflowing.
Pyrrha gasped in concern, while Nora yelped at Ruby.
"You made your sister cry!"
"What?!" Ruby whined. "N-No, I-I mean-"
"Hey, hey," Yang chuckled, wiping her eyes again. "You're all to blame for this, you guys..."
When the rest of them realized Yang wasn't upset, they smiled too.
Ruby and Pyrrha ushered Yang inside and closed the door behind her.
"Well..." Weiss was saying. "While we all might be here now, none of this would've been possible if not for Neo."
"That's right," Blake said, putting a hand on the smaller girl's back and coaxing her towards Yang. "She planned everything and got us all together. You can blame her."
Yang looked up as her girlfriend came to a stop in front of her. Neo still looked nervous, twiddling her fingers a little bit before she flashed her gaze up at Yang.
Ruby told me you didn't like big parties. But I just wanted to make you happy today of all days. I hope this is okay. If you don't want to do it, then please just-
But she never got to finish her signing, because Yang pulled her into a deep, tight hug, and kissed the top of her head.
"Y'know... I've always wondered what it would be like to have a party on my birthday. But I could never admit that I wanted one. So thank you. All of you." She let go of Neo and looked down into her eyes. "And thank you for making it happen."
Yang kissed her in front of everyone, making them all smile, every heart in the room lifting. Neo trembled with relief as she kissed Yang in return.
A moment later, they parted, with smiles on their lips and tears in their eyes.
That was when Nora's booming voice made the room shake.
"Alllll righty! Let's get this party start~ed!"
And so they did.
Weiss' mansion was perfect for this kind of event.
They played games together outside, particularly the one where they needed to keep a lone balloon up in the air for as long as possible.
Once the games had worn them out, they relaxed indoors in the dining hall, where Weiss had prepared lemonade for everyone.
And everyone had pitched in to buy Yang her favorite kind of cake – black raspberry ice cream with whipped cream and jelly bean toppings.
They sang for her, then urged her to blow out her candles. Yang thought for a moment, then took a deep breath and extinguished them. Neo, sitting beside her, had to wonder.
What did you wish for?
But Nora and Ruby both were quick to cut in.
"Nooo! You can't tell-"
"-or else it won't come true!"
But Yang only laughed.
"Well then, I guess I can tell. Because all I could ever wish for has already come true. And it's all right here."
They all took turns hugging her and wishing her a happy birthday once again as Pyrrha cut the cake for them.
They enjoyed their time together there, chatting happily, joking, and laughing.
A while later, they all settled down to watch a few movies together. Yang was happy when Neo cuddled up close beside her on the couch. Yang started to apologize to her girlfriend for how spacey she'd been the last time they'd been together, but Neo silenced her with a kiss.
And before they knew it, the day had turned to evening. People started taking their leave, all of them hugging Yang one last time before stepping out the door.
Before long, only Yang, Neo, Ruby, and Blake were left in Weiss' house. They helped her clean up a little bit, but it wasn't long before Ruby started yawning. Blake offered to walk her home, which would give Yang and Neo the opportunity to be alone together for a while.
Before they left, Blake thanked Neo for coming up with the idea and Weiss for hosting, then hugged Yang one last time. Ruby hugged her sister too, and promised to see her soon back at home, then hugged Weiss and Neo before following Blake out the door.
Their quintet became a trio, and Yang took the time to also express her gratitude towards Weiss for today.
"It was no trouble at all," Weiss assured her. "I'm not the one you should be thanking." She flashed a glance at Neo, then wished them both goodnight.
Now that Yang was alone with her girlfriend, she decided it was time to thank her properly for all she'd done.
Taking Neo's hand, she guided her down the twilit sidewalks until they reached a bench beneath one of the streetlights. Yang sat down with Neo at her side and wasted no time in kissing her again.
"Thank you," she murmured against her lips. "I had a lot of fun today. I never thought that I... could have fun on my birthday, y'know? I just didn't think it was possible."
Neo shook her head.
You don't need to thank me. I'm just glad you were okay with it. Everyone else wanted to do this as much as I did.
"Still," Yang said. "I wanna thank you specially. And... I think I have just the way to do it."
She pulled the small purse from over her shoulder, where it'd been all day. Neo peered into her lap and watched Yang unzip it, then pull out the small pink box. Yang explained what it was.
"My mom picked this out for me before I was born. It was... her first and last present to me... She was gonna give it to me on my thirteenth birthday. My dad ended up giving it to me in her stead. I've never been able to open it. But... I want to. Right now. With you."
Neo could hardly believe what she was hearing. She couldn't even begin to imagine how much this meant to Yang. And for her to be sharing it with Neo...
She couldn't stop a few tears from falling down.
Are you sure?
Yang leaned to the side and kissed her cheek.
"Never been surer of anything in my life."
But she couldn't deny that her heart was pounding now at the prospect of finally opening her mother's present. Thankfully, Neo was there to slip one of her hands into Yang's, squeezing gently for support.
Yang took a deep breath, feeling Neo leaning against her side.
Then, with her free hand, Yang pulled the tiny pink ribbon away from the box. She swallowed, her fingers pausing at the heart-shaped knob that would open it. Neo squeezed her hand again.
Slowly, Yang lifted the lid, after twenty years.
Inside was a small piece of paper.
Carefully, she held it between her fingers and unfolded it.
From inside, a small photograph fell.
Yang recognized the person instantly. She was smiling, her rose-red eyes bright and sparkling, her long, black hair flowing in the wind.
It was a photo of her mother, joyful and vibrant in her prime.
Yang had only seen a few photos of her before, but never one like this.
Her eyes began to sting as she moved the photo aside and looked down into the box.
A small, golden necklace rested there, cushioned on soft plush. It was carved with tiny, intricate designs. Despite its never seeing the light of day in over twenty years, it still shown brightly beneath the lamplight.
Yang held her breath as she touched the trinket with her fingertip, then glanced at the paper beside it. It was a small letter, written very neatly. And it was addressed to her:
I hope you can find use for this present. It's for you and for the people you love most dearly. Make sure you always keep them close to your heart.
Yang had to turn her face away so the tears wouldn't drip down and stain the paper. She buried herself into Neo's shoulder and sobbed softly.
Neo held her close, making sure not to let any of the items slip out of her girlfriend's lap.
Yang cried for a few minutes, until she'd composed herself enough to lift her head up again. She glanced back at the necklace, where a tiny handle sat on one side. She lifted it and pulled gently, until she heard a click.
It was a locket.
Inside, on the left, was a photo of her parents. Raven and Taiyang, happily smiling back at her.
The space on the righthand side was empty.
Yang knew now what her mother had wanted her to do.
Raven had filled half of the locket for her, with two of the people Yang loved most in the world.
Now, it was up to Yang to complete it.
She knew right away who she wanted in the other half of that locket.
"You..." she whispered to Neo, knowing her girlfriend was following along. "You and Ruby. Tomorrow... come over, and I'll take a picture of you guys together. And I'll put it in here..."
Yang gently slipped her hand out of Neo's, just so she could pack the photo and letter back into the box, though she extracted the necklace. She flashed Neo an inquiring look, and her girlfriend quickly nodded.
She accepted the necklace from Yang, and draped it around her collar, then fastened it for her at the nape of her neck.
Neo hugged her once again, touched beyond communication that Yang would want to include her in this, both in the opening of this gift, and the completion of the locket.
Yang whimpered, pulling her in close, one hand lightly touching the locket above her collar.
"I'll... always keep it close to my heart. Just like she said."
Neo was crying too, sniffling softly, her hands shaking as she moved them.
This is really beautiful. Your mother loved you so much, Yang. Thank you for sharing this with me.
Yang nodded, and closed the little pink box.
"Thank you," she said. "For giving me the courage to open it."
Neo smiled. She looped her arms around Yang's neck, following the shape of the locket's chain, and kissed her again.
Yang cried a little, but all the while, the smile never left her lips.
When they parted, Neo signed to her one more time.
Happy birthday, Yang.
"Thanks, Neo. Thank you so much." She pecked her girlfriend's forehead, and then slipped the pink box back into her purse. "Come on."
Together, they stood, and hand-in-hand, they began walking home.
For so many years, Yang had felt stuck - incomplete.
But now she knew she would be able to enjoy her birthday for every year to come.
She could complete her locket, fill her heart with all the people she loved, and keep moving forward.
A/N: The flow of this story just naturally took a turn in this direction, so I just went with it. I hope it was a good mix of angst and comfort for you! Thanks for reading!
If you like my work, you can support me on as Kiria Alice!