Just Act Casually

AN: Welcome to a brand new AU story. First things first, this is my first ever RWBY fanfic…that does not exist in the RWBYond continuity. This is its own thing. It is also a Lancaster fic, basically inspired by something I said on the subject some time ago. I hope you enjoy.

Chapter 1: An Interesting Arrangement

Ruby knocked back the first shot of tequila for the night. She had just gotten back from a mission and was already hating being back home. At least Jaune was around to hang out with. But he was having an even worse day. Which was why they were skipping the small talk and beers and going straight to the shots.

"God that's kind of fucked up." She said as she slammed the glass back down.

"It was my decision." Jaune insisted.

"You two were together for so long though." Ruby shook her head as Jaune took a sip of his drink.

"Yeah, I know but…the last few months have been stressful. This whole mess has been building up for over a year and I was just so sick of it." Jaune took another sip.

He and his long-time girlfriend Pyrrha had just broken up. After damn near five years together, Jaune decided to call things off. Ruby could attest to their relationship having never been exactly the healthiest but it was stable. Much more stable than anything Ruby had gotten into.

"Well at least she wasn't cheating on you." Ruby offered, speaking from experience. "Wait, you didn't cheat on her, did you?"

"Oh God no." Jaune said. "I don't think I'd be able to do it, even if I wanted to."

"So, what the hell happened?" Ruby still couldn't wrap her mind around it. She had known Jaune for six years. He wasn't the kind to give up. He had only dated two girls in that time. Ruby's best friend Weiss, and Pyrrha. Ruby thought that if anyone was dumping anyone it would have been Pyrrha.

"I got sick of the passive aggressive bullshit she tried pulling." Jaune said. Ruby downed another shot while he spoke. "It was great for the first year, and really good for the second and third. But it was the same shit every week. She was basically guilt tripping me into staying. Then it started interfering with my job as a hunter. Then she kept trying to guilt me into marriage and it…it didn't feel right. I…I just wasn't happy."

"That's rough." Ruby downed her third shot.

"Please, you've had it way worse." Jaune brushed her empathy off. She knew exactly who he was referring to. And the thought of that lying bastard filled Ruby with unbridled spite. Perhaps she wasn't as over it as she thought she was.

"What gives?" Ruby changed the subject.

"Huh?" Jaune looked at her questioningly.

"I'm on my fourth shot and you're still on your first." Anytime they had gone drinking he always kept pace with her.

"I guess I don't really feel like getting hammered." He said taking another drink.

"Yeah…and I'm feeling more willing than I have in a while."

"How come?"

"I just found out that my sister fucking ditched me to live with some guy in Mistral."

"You're shitting me?"

"No…well, it wasn't just some guy. It was Sage. But seriously, just out of the blue, I get home and she's packing her things." She slammed another shot down. "FFFFFuck my life. After I took out that huge ass loan to get us the damn place now I have to look for a roommate otherwise I'm not going to be able to pay the bills." She put a hand to her head. "Yang really screwed me over on this one."

"What did she say when you told her this?"

"Oh, you're smart, you'll figure something out. Love you, bye-bye." She mocked.

"See that…that's fucked up." Jaune said. "Did you try Blake?

"She's in Menagerie with Sun."

"Weiss…has a mansion. Ren and Nora?"

"Moving all the way to Mistral."

"Damn." He snapped his fingers. "I have an idea."

"This isn't one of your ideas that involves going to the pancake house at three in the morning? Is it? Because I don't think spending more money is going to solve my problem."

"No, silly goose. I should be your roommate." Jaune said. "I…well…as you figured out already…I'm kinda homeless."

"You did bite the hand that feeds." Ruby said.

"I know, I was planning on just moving in with my parents again. But this sounds much better."

"Well, anything beats living with your parents when you're twenty-five years old." She poked fun. "That was the whole damn point of Yang and I getting that apartment." She cursed under her breath and took another shot. This one was a little tougher to swallow. She was right at that point of being tipsy.

"You and me, roomies, it'll be a blast." Jaune said. "It'll just be like that backpacking trip we took to Haven."

"You mean the one where Pyyrha threatened to ruin my life because she thought I actually liked you like that."

"Ah, good times."

"The hell does she…" Ruby had never liked Pyrrha the same way again. Her and Jaune had been friends for a few months before Pyrrha had come into the picture. Ruby actually understood her concerns. She had been crushing on Jaune hardcore from day one. And that backpacking trip, which was all Yang's idea, was the catalyst for a lot of things, including Jaune and Pyrrha's relationship. Well, the Beacon dance a few weeks earlier had certainly helped.

"I wish we could go back to those days." Jaune sighed.

"I don't. You guys treated me like I was some kid roadie even though I was supposed to be one of the trip leaders."

"Well it was the first time you had been outside Vale." Jaune poked her side.

"None of you respected me until I whipped out Crescent Rose and slaughtered those Grimm while you were all still pulling your pants up."

"And that's why Ozpin made you one of the group leaders." Jaune laughed.

That's how they had all met. Beacon Academy. Though, Ruby had met Jaune a few months earlier thanks to Yang going to one of those campus' visit days. Ruby had tagged along with her sister and got pulled into a conversation with Jaune when he recognized the game she was playing on her scroll. Then, because of some extenuating circumstances, Ruby got accepted into Beacon two years early, became a squad leader and made lots of friends.

After their first year, they got permission from Ozpin to go backpacking in Mistral. And a lot of shenanigans ensued that ended with Ruby more or less saving the world, Blake stopping a Faunas uprising, Ren and Nora hooking up, Yang getting a sweet robot arm and on top of all of that, Jaune and Pyrrha started dating.

"So, you and me, in this mess together." Ruby said as she took another shot.

"Sounds fun." Jaune nodded.

"It's not going to be weird, is it?" Ruby knew her and Jaune wouldn't do anything. But she was worried about how their friends would perceive such an event. Especially after Jaune's breakup.

"Nah…you said earlier it's two bedrooms. So, that's not as weird as it would have been in the Beacon dorms with my team."

"Oh yeah." Ruby said. It had been so long she nearly forgot that Team JNPR had a coed room. She laughed at her own absent mindedness.

"Yeah, so, are you free tomorrow?" Jaune asked.

"Hell yeah." Ruby said.

"I could use your help to move my stuff in."

"Of course, roomie." She said.

"To being roommates." He raised his glass.

"To roommates." She toasted. They both knocked back their shots.

Several hours of drinking and hanging out later, and Ruby was done. She was already regretting the hangover she was going to have in the morning. Lucky for her, Jaune was only a little drunk. They walked into Ruby's apartment. It dawned on her that Jaune had yet to see it.

"Nice place." He said. "I can see why you're pissed at Yang. She's missing out."

"Kitchen, living room…" She pointed out. "Bathroom, please keep the seat down. My room…your room. Lucky, you and Yang had…" She snapped her fingers. "Shit, what…you and Yang um…colors. Yellow. You both like yellow." She pieced together. She felt her stomach churning. She darted to the bathroom and started vomiting.

"You okay?" Jaune sat next to her while her head was in the toilet. She gave him a thumb up.

"I'm ready for bed." She moaned. "TV is all yours but keep it down." She whined.

"Sure thing." Jaune said. "We can do some ground rules tomorrow."

"No walking around naked." Ruby said.

"Afraid you won't be able to resist me?" Jaune joked.

"That rules for me. Wouldn't want any potential rebound girls getting jealous." Ruby said. It had always been a point of humor for them ever since Pyrrha's little threat to Ruby.

"Yeah, wouldn't want to turn any of your would-be boyfriends gay either."

"That was one time!" Ruby said. "And it wasn't even you." She had dated Scarlet for a hot minute, then he came out as gay after a camping trip with the guys. All reports said it was actually Sun's fault, though Sun denied it. Scarlet's story was that Sun had basically pushed him into some brawny waiter and one thing led to another. Ruby, Jaune and Scarlet were the only ones surprised. Sun had even tried warning her that Scarlet was in the closet and didn't know it.

"Well, have a good night." Jaune walked out of the bathroom.

"Good night." She lifted her head out of the toilet and stumbled into her room. Her vision was all blurry but she was able to make the important bits out. So, she just stripped to her underwear and went to bed knowing that her first home outside of her dad's or Beacon was safely hers. All thanks to Jaune.

AN: And that's the first episode. As I said, this is its own AU where, bad things happened but they weren't, build a 130+ epic level of bad things. Also, in this AU, Ruby took after Qrow in her drinking and all around social life. But we'll get more of that in future chapters.