Red is the Color of Passion

Chapter 6: When I Think About You I…


The first thought that crossed Jaune's mind once his brain started to work correctly was that the situation felt rather nice. Ruby's lips were awfully soft, and the way she crawled into his lap, throwing her arms around his neck as she smashed their mouths together, wasn't something Jaune could complain about. His body moved on its own accord, his arms wrapping around Ruby's waist and Ruby gave a delightful sound that Jaune couldn't place, but he'd be lying through his teeth if he said that he didn't want to hear it again.

The second thought that crossed through his mind, was that if Yang even thought that what was happening, was happening, she'd leave him six feet under. The ground. Because he would be deader than dead. He could not be seen making out with Ruby. His mind was torn between his libido, and his caution.

His train of thought was derailed, robbed, with the conductor's left tied up and naked at the front when Ruby slipped her tongue in. The train was then stripped of all valuable parts and then blown up when she started to rock her hips. God, if she wasn't going to kill him. His arms tightened around her waist like belts, or snakes, or something, and he pushed upward against her chin, and she chuckled so darkly that he wasn't sure the girl on his lap was Ruby.

"Good boy~..." Before he could really focus on how un-Ruby-like Ruby was being, she swooped back in and devilishly dragged her hips across his own. Jaune was certain that at any moment, he was going to wake up, and that this was merely the best dream a person could possibly have. He was going to spend the rest of his life knowing that no moment, dream or reality, would ever be this satisfying, make him this happy, feel this goOooaaoah!

Something was zipped. Or unzipped. How were you supposed to tell just from the noise?

Nope! Definitely unzipped! Ruby's hand was straying into dangerous waters, and certainly far sooner than was appropriate for their relationship!

"Ruby-!?"

"Shhhh...just let me take care of you. You don't know how long I've waited for this."

"Wha-"

"Three agonizing days. Lying awake at night, thinking about it, sitting at the same table knowing it was right there, just waiting for me, all long and har-"

"Okay! I think it's really time we find some adult supervision, eh Rub-?" Jaune started to stand, but Ruby clung to him, rather like a lemur species found on Menagerie, known for its dark red fur and aggressive mating rituals.

"You love me, don't you Jaune?"

"W-what?" 'I mean...I was just kissing her. Are you gonna seriously just do that and then walk away, cast aside her feelings like some big jerk?' And she had always been one of his best friends, maybe the best. But how did she mean? Did he love her?

Yes, in the same way he loved Pyrrha or Ren or Nora.

"Well y-yeah..."

"Then don't take this from me."

"What-!?"

Ruby stretched out a leg, braced it against the arm of the couch, and spun them around, landing atop Jaune's chest as they collapsed in a gasping breath. One surprisingly strong hand clasped at his neck, pinning him in place, while the other worked at his belt.

"Ruby!"

"Whatever happens Jaune, remember that I love you."

To say this was bad, was an understatement. Making out with Ruby was bad enough, but this? Yang would somehow disintegrate him with the sheer power of her hate. Jaune struggled, but Ruby's grip was too strong, and while he might have tried to talk his way out of things, the almost manic look in Ruby's eyes told him that talking was the last thing the silver eyed girl wanted to do.

It was then when reality finally gave up.

Said surrender came first with the sound of breaking glass as something or someone came bursting in through the window, which was quite the trick seeing how they were a good three stories up. For a brief moment, Jaune's heart stopped beating in his chest as he figured that Yang had found them, and that he was a dead man. He'd only mentally wrote Pyrrha and Ren into his will before he realized something. While the person who'd crashed through the window was blond, it was most certainly not Yang Xiao Long, unless she'd somehow got a sex change in less than 24 hours. The man, who Jaune had to admit looked quite rugged, rushed over and without ceremony, snatched Ruby up with one hand by her cape, causing the girl to start flailing around.

"Kid, quick! I'll hold her back, you get out of here!"

Jaune blinked in surprise, but quickly recovered from the shock, fastening his belt and scrambling to his feet. By this point, Ruby was starting to make sounds that were more animal than human as she flailed angrily in the man's grip, kicking and hissing and whining as she tried to get free. He did catch one thing, though:

"Dad!"

Jaune looked to his savior in terror. Oh god. That was so, so much worse. He turned and ran, bolting out the door like the devil himself was on his heels.

The man sighed, his expression morphing into one of exasperation and resignation. "Now what am I going to do with you?" He was given no other answer other than the girl in his hand flailing harder. He sighed again. "You are just like your mother, you know that? How did Qrow handle her that one time? Oh, yeah." He snapped the fingers of his other hand and marched Ruby over to a nearby coat rack, hanging her there by the collar. Ruby continued flailing in place and the man rubbed the back of his neck. "Alright, there. That should keep you from getting into trouble, at least until you calm down. Poor kid's probably shitting bricks right now." He stretched and walked out the door, leaving a spitting, angry Ruby behind him.

"Now, the kid didn't look like he was too fast and if I was a terrified beanpole, where would I go? Hm…" The man stroked his chin, then adjusted his vest. "I'd hide. Classrooms." With that, one Taiyang Xiao Long began to stroll down the hallway, hands in his pockets as he began his mission of mercy…


[Classroom - Beacon]


"Oh god, don't kill me!"

Taiyang couldn't help but chuckle to himself. That was quick. It only took him a good ten minutes before he was able to catch up to the kid. "Kid, relax I-"

"I swear, I didn't mean it!" Jaune cried out, hiding behind a desk on the other side of the room, his face as pale as Weiss' dress. "I just got caught up in things and I totally didn't mean to make out with Ruby-n-not that I wouldn't want to make out with her! I mean-" At this point, the younger blond was babbling incoherently in his panic.

He chuckled again. "You've got good taste."

Jaune, if possible, went paler. "What?"

His tan nose crinkled. "Ew, gross, not like that, don't make it weird."

"But you said?"

"Look, she takes after her mom, alright? And if you were to kiss my wife, I would say you had good taste, right before I kicked your teeth in."

"Oh, come on!"

Taiyang shook his head and ran a hand through curly blonde hair. "Kid, look, I'm only trying to-"

"I wasn't going to have sex with her, I swear! N-never! N-not that she isn't attractive! Please don't kill me!"

There was silence, then, "...Well, why not?"

Jaune blinked. "What?"

"You're both young, it's obvious she likes you, it's a totally natural thing! Hell, I lost my v-card when I was here at Beacon, about first year too."

"...Are you seriously trying to encourage me to sleep with your daughter?"

Taiyang's expression twisted as he tried to find the right words. "I wouldn't say encourage...just saying that if Ruby is anything like her mother, and she is a lot like her mother, you might really not have much of a choice."

Now assured that his life wasn't in danger (until Yang found out), Jaune collapsed onto the desk, back rising in great heaving pants.

"This is such a mess..."

Taiyang could sympathize, and he paced over, patting Jaune comfortingly on the back, before tapping his shoulder.

"Hm?"

Taiyang nudged his shoulder, and Jaune sat up, his gaze confused as Taiyang sat on the desk, before patting the spot next to him. Jaune sighed and sat next to him, the two tall blondes resting their feet on the tiled floor of the classroom.

"So, Ruby likes me...?"

"Yup."

"And she wants...you know...?"

"Yup."

Jaune's brow furrowed. "But...we're still just friends. You're supposed to save that for someone you love..." His voice got quieter with every word, until Taiyang had to strain to hear the last. He openly laughed, before reaching over and ruffling Jaune's hair.

"You're adorable."

Jaune chuckled to himself and shoved the older man, shrugging away.

"Kid...What's your name?"

"Jaune. Jaune Arc."

"Arc? God damn. Arc fertility and Rose libido, good god, I'll have ten grandkids by 45."

"What?" Jaune hadn't heard his (slightly terrified) muttering.

"Look, Jaune, you like Ruby, right?"

"Yeah, of course I do. Ruby's one of my closest friends."

Taiyang chuckled warmly. "I don't quite mean like that, kid. Do you love her? Well, that might be a bit much for someone as young as you, but you're at least attracted to her, right? Would you, I dunno...wanna date her?" He finished explaining.

"I…" Jaune froze. Admitting he liked Ruby as a friend was one thing. As a girlfriend though? It hadn't been something he'd considered. Or maybe he had, but it had been one of those intrusive thoughts he'd tried to ignore out of fear of risking his current relationship with Ruby. It wasn't an unpleasant thought, now that he stopped and gave it some thought. Ruby was kind, sweet, and was the only other person besides Pyrrha who seemed to have total and unconditional faith in him. Hell, he'd be lying if he said he hadn't enjoyed kissing her. "I...think so?"

"See, that? That's a good sign." Taiyang gestured to him, pulling a can of something cold from...somewhere. He cracked it open and took a long hearty sip. "'Means you're thinking about it. You didn't say anything right away, which is good." He sipped again. "Ruby's not an instant-answer kinda girl. Never should be."

"So...what should I do in the meantime? I mean Ruby was...she was kinda…" Jaune blushed faintly at the mere memory of Ruby's aggressive actions.

"Forward? Yeah, her mother was just as bad. Look, I'll stick around for awhile, let you get your thoughts in order, but I should warn you, the longer you wait, the more aggressive she's gonna get. I can't keep her away forever." Taiyang finished his drink, looked down at the can in his hand and smashed it against his forehead. "Heh, still got it." He tossed the can into a nearby bin with the practised ease of a pro basketball player, and turned back to Jaune. "For now, take a load off. It's probably been one hell of a night for you."

"W-wait, what about Yang? She's going to kill me if she even sees me thinking of kissing Ruby much less anything else!"

Taiyang laughed. "Yeah, Yang can be a bit overprotective. Kinda my fault. I'll give her a talk as well. I mean, you seem like a good kid, and if I know the Arcs, you guys are big on family. In more than one sense." Taiyang muttered the last, before grinning again at Jaune. "That's a big plus in my book."

Jaune gave a nervous smile. "T-thanks. You know, you're a pretty cool guy yourself."

Taiyang laughed even harder. "Try convincing my kids of that!"

Feeling much more at ease, Jaune stood up off of the desk. "Thanks, sir. I'll definitely think about things. I mean, Ruby's a great girl. I don't want to rush off on anything with her."

"Good kid. I got a good feeling about you, Jaune. Don't let me down."

"I'm gonna hit the hay. I need some rest." Jaune yawned and waved as he walked out of the classroom.

Taiyang called after him "Make sure to wear gloves!"

Jaune peeked back in. "What?"

His maybe-possibly-future father-in-law punched his fists together. "Before you hit the hay."

Jaune rolled his eyes, but he smirked and laughed anyway. "God, you are Yang's dad."

He barked a laugh as Jaune left, before his smile vanished. "Wait, where am I gonna stay until this blows over? Oh god...Goodwitch...the window..." He groaned and slumped. "Maybe I can be lucky and time has softened the old witch...at least the kid's got nothing more to worry about…"


[Vale - Bullhead Landing Zone]


"Thanks for getting here so soon, Uncle Qrow."

"Yeah, yeah." Qrow was already in a bad mood as things went. Between all the issues going on with the Queen and Ironwood being stubborn, his job wasn't going well. Things took a turn for the worse, however, when he'd heard that his niece, his dear, sweet, innocent niece was being taken advantage of by some scumbag kid. At least he could take care of business quickly, touch bases with Ozpin and leave, knowing that his dear niece's chastity would be protected. He'd have to use some of his contacts though, to hide the body of whatever punk thought he could touch Ruby.

Yang shuffled nervously from foot to foot. "Uncle Qrow?"

Qrow paused in his dramatic-and-intimidating-glare practice. "Hm?"

"It's just been eating at me: why do you think dad told me to wait? He said not to do anything to stop this mess, or go anywhere near Jaune! I mean, you'd think, since Ruby's his daughter, you know? And dad's are supposed to be overprotective, right?"

"Your dad is under some pretty weird assumptions when it comes to Ruby and romance, kiddo. He was like that with your mom too, always said that she was secretly hiding a ravenous thirst behind her sweet exterior."

"What? When you guys talk about her, she never sounds sweet."

Qrow's scowl faded almost entirely, and he slung an arm around his niece's shoulder. "Not Raven, kid. Your mom."

"Oh." Yang smiled up at him, before her nose crinkled in disgust.

"Ew, gross, Qrow! You smell terrible!"

After completely exaggerating how bad he smelled, she paused, and her nose-wrinkle of disgust was replaced with a nose-wrinkle of confusion. "Wait, but that doesn't explain dad."

"Look, your dad's weird, alright, especially when it comes to girls named Rose. I'm really not sure what he's planning, but it wouldn't surprise me if he didn't do anything to stop this kid from taking advantage of Ruby."

"Seriously?! But she's his daughter!"

"Heh, don't I know it. Even before you called me, he told me that 'Ruby had awakened something inside herself', whatever that was supposed to mean."

Yang shook her head. Her uncle was right. Ever since Summer had passed away, her father had been fairly weird. "So...you'll take care of things, right?"

Qrow nodded. "It's why I got here as fast as I could. Just direct me to the kid's dorm room, and I'll take care of the rest. What's his name, anyway?"

"Huh?" Yang blinked. "It's-"

Before she could finish, Qrow cut her off. "On second thought, don't tell me. I need all the deniability I can get."

Yang bit down on the tip of her thumb for a few seconds before replying, "He's the leader of team JNPR. They live in the dorm right across the hall from us."

Qrow hefted his blade over his shoulder. "Good. This'll make things easy. All you four have to do is just deny you've heard anything."

"Um, Uncle Qrow, you don't really have to permanently remove him. Just...you know...maybe scare him?" Yang replied, looking a tad uneasy.

"Relax, Junebug. I've got this. By the time I'm done with him, that kid won't be an issue." Qrow brushed off his niece's concern, but as he stepped forward, he wobbled dangerously, and Yang caught him across the front.

She propped him up and looked into his eyes. They were a little too dilated, and he couldn't seem to focus. "How long have you been awake?"

"Don't worry, I need to- to go take care of that kid."

Yang's eyes hardened. "How. Long."

"That's not important, I just-" Yang silenced him with a glare. "Jesus. You remind me of my sister sometimes." She wasn't sure how to feel about that. "Alright, alright, I'll deal with him tomorrow. Just...can I lie down, somewhere?"

She smirked as he finally gave in. Really, her uncle could be so head strong sometimes. Luckily, she wasn't anything like that. Remotely. Ever.


L/N: Woo, another chapter, hot off the presses! This one was a little more difficult to get out, simply because of plot issues, but they were quickly resolved. Admittedly, we're getting close to the crux of the story here, and there's probably only two, maybe three chapters left, but we're saving the (hopefully) best for last. Will Ruby get Jaune? Will Jaune admit his feelings for Ruby? Will Qrow put a stop to all of this? Will Pyrrha ever get to see Jaune's sausage? The answer to most of these will be coming soon!

S/N: I don't think I've ever fully understood how self conscious I am until I took commissions. Now that I am, I look at my writing and go "This is such garbage. I shouldn't be paid for this. Why did I ever think I could do this?" And then, it's so much easier when I come back to RitCoP, because Lefou does all the work, and I can fool myself into thinking I've accomplished anything. Speaking of something that Lefou did, here's an omake.


[Beacon Academy - STRQ Breakroom]


"Raven, we really should be going now…"

The break room was tense beyond belief. On one side of the room, one Taiyang Xiao-Long stood nervously, wringing his hands. Standing in front of him with a smirk on her face, Raven Branwen stood, eyes locked with a woman a full head shorter than she was. On the other side of the room, glaring back at Raven was one Summer Rose, who was currently snarling angrily, teeth bared and silver eyes narrowed. Holding her back in desperation was Raven's brother, Qrow Branwen. Summer snarled and whined like a rabid animal, struggling to break Qrow's grasp in murderous fury at the red-eyed, black haired woman before her.

"In a minute, Taiyang, dear." Raven emphasized the last word, her smirk growing as Summer's flailing only grew.

Qrow, slowly being dragged forward by the surprising strength of his teammate, tried so hard to pull her back away from her sister. "Damn it, Raven! Stop rubbing it in and leave! I can't hold her off forever!"

"Raven, honey, please? It's not really nice to be taunting Summer like that…"

Raven briefly rolled her eyes before turning her back deliberately on Summer, fixing Taiyang with a smile. "You're right. The longer we spend here, the less fun we'll get to have at the hotel. Luckily for us, I reserved three days. I wonder whose stamina will give out first…" Raven purred, Taiyang's eyes widening as he blushed at the implications.

Implications that were sending Summer into a frothing fury. One of her hands broke free of Qrow and she began to make scratching gestures as she flailed impotently at Raven, murder in her gaze. "Damn it Raven, will you get the hell out of here?!" Qrow half screamed, feeling his grip on Summer loosen by the second.

Raven huffed, but complied, a quick wave of her hand opening up a glowing rift in space-time. With one last smirk back over her shoulder, she and Taiyang stepped through the portal. As she did so, Raven smacked Taiyang's rear with an audible smack, causing him to jump and causing Summer to give an inhuman screech of fury, cut off by the portal's closing. The two gone, Qrow gave a breath of relief, but noticed that Summer's fury wasn't abated. "Shit...you really are pissed off at missing out on Taiyang's Tai-wang, aren't you? If I let you go now, you'll just go hunt them down, and bitch though she is, Raven is family…"

A lightbulb went off in Qrow's head.

With a grin, the Huntsman-in-training gave a herculean burst of effort and dragged Summer backward, picking her up off the ground. If she noticed, she didn't make it known, instead simply flailing and kicking in Qrow's grip in her single-minded attempt to chase down Taiyang and Raven. With a heave, Qrow proceeded to lift Summer up and hooked the back of her cape onto a nearby coat rack, leaving her flailing a couple feet above the ground. So overcome with rage was she, she never noticed that she could have simply kicked herself off of the wall, or undone her cape to escape.

"There. I'll leave you there, and let you cool down. Freakin' Raven. I swear, sometimes I think she just got together with Taiyang just to spite you…" Qrow shook his head, sighed and looked around the room, ignoring the animalistic noises Summer continued to make. "God, I need a drink…"

"You're underage..."

"Doesn't matter."