Read the AN for important news. Actually, just read the edit note below if you're really feeling lazy.
Hello Ladies and Gents!
Welcome to my second fic! Hopefully with less crappy writing than my last one. I still enjoy writing the other piece, but I want to see how this one pans out too.
I just recently started playing Skyrim for the billionth time. I've been playing ever since it came out and I'm pretty sure I logged at least 6,000 hours in the last six years.
So on a cold brisk morn... I slaughtered a couple dozen bandits. Then suddenly I got the idea for this fic. I wanted to take aspects from three games I love, RWBY - throw them into a pot and this was born. I've taken inspiration from Skyrim, The Witcher 3, and Elder Scrolls Online. So there won't be any Grimm, but there will be vampires, werewolves, bandits and lots of shit Jaune's going to kill. I also included some stuff from Oblivion and Kingdom Come: Deliverance.
This is going to be a Weiss x Jaune romance. I like the pairing, not us much as Arkos or Dragonslayer, but I still think it has potential.
Edit Note (10/28/19) Ok, fucksticks! I've got the first edit done. I edited a lot of shit out and a lot more shit in. I rearranged some of the scenes to add to the flow, and elaborated on some of what Jaune sees. I also took the time to add a lot more description as to the world mechanics along with fixing any errors in continuity.
I may have missed something. I'm not an English major, nor am I perfect in terms of grammar. So, go easy on me.
In addition to what I have here. I'm going to say the first twenty or so chapters are meant for limited character development and are mainly just to get the story going. It is faster paced going into it, but slows down upon the second act.
One, type eighteen B, forged with silver plating and a steel core, the blade approximately fifty inches in length. Sixty in total when including the grip and pommel. The other, a type ten A simple steel broadsword measuring in at around forty-five inches, accompanied by an argent shield laden with gold painted trim.
These were three of Jaune's most precious items. What he planned on making a living with during the foreseeable future. The weapons were simple... to put it lightly. Truthfully Jaune didn't bother with the pretty stuff on any of his blades. The shield was only painted to protect the metal and to avoid having to polish it. His swords, however, would get the job done until he could upgrade them or find something better if he survived long enough to do so.
Jaune was born into a blacksmith's household. His father was once a mercenary and monster slayer for hire before settling down in Bar, Jaune's hometown. There he took up the dull lifestyle of smithing blades and tools for whatever adventures and commoners who waltzed into his shop. His mother was a merchant peddling goods they made or grew on their farm with Jaune's sisters helping to manage the family's store.
It was a pleasant lifestyle for the most part, but Jaune wanted more. Even though this life was one of contentment and having enough food to never go hungry. Jaune was never truly happy with the circumstances he was born into. Jaune wanted to be a hero like his father. Even more than that, he wanted to be a knight.
He did not want to spend the rest of his days shoeing horses or making farming tools. He did not want to live the rest of his life in anonymity, having never done something to make his mark on the world. To live the same boring life where he was no better than the incompetent automatons. Being content as one of the countless masses playing on the grand stage with nothing to show for their effort other than a vague notion of what a life should be.
Jaune yearned to explore Remnant in its entirety, hunt the monsters that roamed this wild planet, and go questing like a real adventurer, living his life to the fullest. However, Jaune's father did not believe that he could make it. None of the boy's training would take, and the only magic he could cast were simple spells that barely resulted in a flame or flash of lightning. Jaune was crushed when his father barred him from pursuing his dream. The entire family did not wish for Jaune to continue this lifestyle, forcing him to give up his vision after barely even a month of training.
He was forced to watch from the sidelines as other children were groomed for the role by their own parents. Former adventurers and heroes took months to even years, teaching their sons and daughters how to persevere in combat or how to use their abilities to their absolute potential. Even Jaune's younger sister was the family prodigy of swordplay, being trained personally by their father.
To say Jaune was jealous would be the most enormous understatement ever made. Why was she given the opportunity and he wasn't? What made them different? Those questions sparked a raging inferno inside the boy as he no longer had a future of his own creation. One not subject to his volition.
He was going to run away and head to Beacon Academy. The leading institution for adventurers and heroes both magical and physical on the continent of Sanus. There he could hopefully begin fabricating a new life for himself. He could earn a reputation as a warrior for the Kingdom of Vale and would do his best to get the attention of the Valish Royalty.
In preparation for his journey, Jaune spent almost every free moment of his time hunting and training just so he could have a chance for this new life. His hands always smelling of monster blood and smoke from the forge. He grew obsessive with the task before him. Not wanting anything else in life other than to become an adventurer. The last two years were a haze of bloody memories and dismembered monster corpses.
Was it worth the effort?
It was enough to get Jaune's level up to around ten and a half. Frankly, an accomplishment for having done this by himself. He played his hand carefully, never tangling with a monster too strong for him to easily handle. Other wannabe adventurers had friends or even their parents go out with them when farming. Jaune only had himself to rely on.
However, it meant Jaune was behind his peers. Far beyond those who never spent a moment wielding sword or spell, but lagging behind the properly trained warriors. Almost ten or so levels below them. Yet, the difference was insignificant compared to Jaune and his own father. Nicholas Arc being level forty-five, the second strongest man in Bar.
On Remnant, levels were something of a mystery. People could sense their strengths and get an approximation of them. With every level, one of your reserves would rise, those being health or aura, stamina, and your magical reserves. Although from what Jaune managed to read, you didn't actually get more of anything, you only became more efficient in that respect or in general, tougher. You could never honestly know how much aura you had, either. Your body just had to feel it.
Some people were born with higher magical reserves or more stamina than other people, and everybody's core attributes or reserves were different based upon their birth or upbringing. Jaune was pretty sure he wasn't one of those special people. His health and stamina were average at best compared to other adventurers and heroes among his peer group. Jaune's stats were evenly spread with more emphasis on Strength, Constitution, and Intelligence (his Charisma was sort of lacking). He couldn't even sense his magical reservoir. Indeed Jaune had no known magical prowess, yet he still was able to wield some kind of magic in the form of his first ability.
He called it Arclight.
Arclight was merely a high-intensity flash of light. Jaune experimented on it with various low-level monsters and Arclight worked exceptionally well. It created a light that was almost as intense as the sun. It stunned enemies who were living and burned the undead to a certain degree. Not turning them into ash, only causing great pain. He managed to gain it when he turned level ten. Unfortunately, he didn't get to use it on anything deadly at the moment. And for all Jaune knew this ability was unique to only him.
Supposedly, everyone's abilities were as unique as their stats. However, the only way to increase your stats or gain new powers was to earn an obscure substance known as Exp.
Levels, which were increased by earning Exp, were wholly dependent on completing a task. This task could be forging a sword, ploughing a field of wheat, or killing monsters. Anything that involved creating something was subject to granting Exp.
Jaune studied whatever literature he could on the mechanism. However, there was nothing that accurately described how it worked. It just happened. Jaune could even feel his level increase every time he made a sword or killed something, so it was real. The boy also saw his stats increase once the new level had been achieved.
However, with the already amazing benefits of breaching the level barrier; Jaune realised there was a side effect to earning Exp. You became more proficient at whatever task or tasks you specialise in. Jaune figured this out after obtaining his first few levels. The boy's awareness for where his sword would slice into a body or how he needed to angle his shield increased in magnitudes after only one level.
Frankly, it boggled the mind. Jaune could barely understand how all of it worked even with repeated experiments. It was an immediate result and not anything like training with a partner. Hopefully, someone at Beacon knew more about it.
Said academy was the fortunate escape for Jaune. They took on about everybody they could and only asked they pay their way. You only needed to complete the Initiation, and the professors would teach you and train you how to survive Remnant.
In terms of combat, Jaune felt confident enough in his abilities when it came to monster hunting. He even managed to kill a vampire, which was something few had accomplished in Bar. Jaune's father being one of the lucky few, who, from what his stories described, killed a dozen or so vampires during his career.
Jaune's family's reaction to him managing to slay a vampire was... less than stellar. His mom and sisters threatened to lock him in the cellar, never to let him out of their sights again. Jaune's dad, however, didn't react in the way he expected. Jaune even managed to bring back a trophy, the vampire's head. It didn't seem like it was enough for the old Arc. The old man was more disappointed that Jaune risked his life for a trophy and a small pile of Lien.
That's what truly set Jaune over the edge. He thought it would make his old man proud of him that he slew a dangerous beast and prove he had what it took to become an adventurer. At this point, Jaune was just glad none of his family members saw his injuries. A few claw marks here and there. Luckily he brought a cure disease potion in the event he contracted stage one vampirism.
I need to recheck my gear...
Jaune picked up the silver sword he affectionately named, Ira Rubrum. It was his killer app, which saved his life when fighting whatever monsters he came across. Jaune made sure to hide it from his mother and sisters lest they whisk the blade away to the bottom of a river. It was expected that his father already knew about it and didn't bother to bring it up.
The rest of his gear laid splayed out on top of his bed. Jaune's other sword Crocea Mors, was still within its sheath and strapped onto the harness made for both blades. Pieces of armour rest next to the swords, consisting of a simple white steel breastplate with spaulders and accompanying vambraces. He wore leather pads on his legs as well, but they would not stand up to the swipe of a sword... a club maybe or a tail, but until he could add metal trim to them, Jaune was stuck with using leather.
Everything looks good... I've got enough supplies to last a few weeks. Shouldn't leave anything that I want to take with me. Need to keep things light.
Jaune planned to leave before dawn as to avoid his sister's and parent's likely attempt to stop him. He was going to leave them a note, of course. There was no point in disappearing without some final words. Jaune would make sure that his sisters wouldn't blame themselves for his running away.
He didn't have a horse, so he was either going to have to walk all the to Vale, or he would have to negotiate with one of the many carriage drivers that frequented the roads to the capital.
Jaune packed his satchel full of Dust Crystals that he had been stockpiling for the last few months. It was a dozen or so medium quality gems that he could sell or possibly use in battle. Except he had no idea how to use them on the fly. Or what they were even used for in general beyond enchantments.
A three or four-day carriage ride would be pleasant. Jaune could catch up on some sleep and be refreshed for the first day at the academy. He just needed to find one cheap enough, so he didn't spend all of his Lien just yet. Jaune had few hundred coins to his name, but he knew it wouldn't last, so he had to bargain for whatever he needed.
Time to leave...
Jaune threw on his gear, making sure that everything was comfortable and not restricting his movements. The medium armour let Jaune take a hit at the sacrifice of some of his lacklustre agility. However, he could still dodge most attacks from larger creatures and roll if necessary to avoid massive attacks. If Jaune had more money, he would eventually buy or make his own heavy plate at a forge. He fancied himself a knight, and medium armour didn't fit with his class.
"Time to be a hero I guess," Jaune muttered to himself as he snuck out of his window. He was sure he didn't wake anybody, but Jaune needed to keep quiet lest he disturbed anybody else in his neighbourhood. It would break his heart if Jaune's little sister saw him sneak out and tried to stop him.
He made his way down the road to the stables. The half dozen enclosures rested just inside the western gate of Bar. A much larger barn was near the northern and main entrance of the city, but Jaune would have to pass through the marketplace, and he couldn't risk someone spotting him.
Here goes nothing...
A man was tending to his horses and getting them ready for travel. He looked as though he was a trader of sorts. There were weapons in the back of the cart, and the man had a mace strapped to his hip. His clothes didn't scream wealthy, but they were more sophisticated than the rags most of the townsfolk wore.
"What do ye want laddie," the man asked in a boorish slurred tongue.
Ok, maybe he wasn't a merchant or a low ranking one. He might be working for a merchant and simply shuttles goods between towns.
"I was wondering where this cart is going," Jaune slowly began, convinced the man was drunk. "I need passage to Vale, and I'm willing to pay." Hopefully, Jaune's charisma would get him a reasonable price. If not... he was going to have to leg it.
"You're not one of those Witch Men, are ye," the man said, staring at Jaune's twin swords. The boy had no idea what, "Witch Men," the man was referring to.
"N-no," he stuttered. "I-I'm a knight." Even though he fancied himself as a knight, Jaune was not actually that.
Good job Jaune, knights are known for their uncontrollable stuttering.
"Then what's with the two fancy swords," the man sternly replied with a tone of fear in his voice. "I ain't ever seen a knight with two swords."
The man was technically correct. Knights rarely carried two swords since they didn't focus on magical threats, but Jaune was branching out a bit.
"This is a silver sword," Jaune withdrew the blade and twirled it in his hand. "I need it to fight monsters. I also have a steel sword in case I have to fight people." Jaune was hoping he could avoid the latter. But in the event he needed to defend himself, Jaune would not back down. His dad said the first time is always the hardest no matter what.
"Hmmm..." The man remained in thought for a few seconds until he spoke up. "If ye can protect my wagon, I will take ye to Vale for free." The man gladly held his hand out.
Jaune took a second to think about it and then firmly grasped the man's hand in agreement. The Trader hopped aboard his wagon and Jaune jumped into the back, taking his pack off and setting it behind him. The boy leaned back against it, getting comfortable for the journey.
This was a lot easier than I thought it would be.
[An Hour Later]
"I'll keep watch up here if ye can watch my back," the man shouted back to Jaune. "There's ale back there too. So help yourself, laddie."
Jaune examined one of the brown bottles, labelled "Black Baron Ale." He had never been a heavy drinker, but Jaune occasionally dabbled in the stout. The lack of any drinking laws and a hard days work were more than enough to justify a tankard or two.
Jaune looked around and made sure that nobody he knew was around. Slipping the bottle into his bag and uncorking another, downing the brown liquid.
It was smooth, remarkably so. Most ales in Bar were far too strong for his liking, but Jaune didn't have many options. This ale was more robust and possibly imported from out of the country. Vale didn't have the right climate to grow these kinds of hops. Maybe it was from Mistral? Windpath was far enough south that they could grow whatever they wanted.
As Jaune sat and enjoyed his stout, he spotted something off in the distance. It was hard to make out since Jaune didn't have a spyglass or cat eyes and could barely see a few figures off in the distance.
As they approached even further, Jaune realised what had been chasing them. A group of dogs with fur as black as pitch. Almost a dozen red eyes, easily visible from a hundred yards away. Those burning coals resting in their skulls stared straight through Jaune's soul.
"Hellhounds," Jaune shouted, getting the driver's attention who hopped off the wagon and grabbed his club.
Hellhounds were a combination of the magical and physical worlds. They materialised as a solid form, but they were essentially ghosts possessing a shell, demons more appropriately, Creatures of Grimm. Their structures were more akin to Doberman Pinschers, but they were coloured solid black with deep red eyes.
There were around five Hellhounds on the road. They were easy enough to fight as long as you were not swarmed by too many, just like wolves or wild dogs. Five Hellhounds were the average per pack, but it was split between two people making the job easy.
Jaune slid off the back of the carriage, planting his feet firmly on the ground. He grabbed his shield, holding it on his left arm. The boy grasped the handgrip closer to the top of the guard in a diagonal fashion with a strap for his elbow halfway down the back.
He reached behind his head, finding Ira Rubrum sticking out of its sheath. With a tug, Jaune pulled the grip down to his should while sliding the blade from within its scabbard in one smooth motion. Jaune twirled the sword once in his fingers, anticipating the battle ahead of him.
"Stay near the cart and don't let them get behind you," Jaune warned, raising his shield towards his chest.
"I know that," the Trader shouted back. "This isn't my first scrap!"
The first Hellhound reached the cart in mere moments. It snarled at the two men, drooling from the sides of its toothy maw. The beast moved without care as the humans armed themselves, disregarding base instinct to avoid conflict.
The dog leapt up towards Jaune's neck. The boy felt everything slow down while he redirected his shield to meet the beast. Slamming the face into the hound's snout, Jaune shattered the bones in the front of its skull. He twisted his torso to the side, tossing the hound away.
The Trader moved forward, mace in hand. A look of confidence or sheer bravado on his face. Another hound bolted up to him but met the business end of the club. He swung downwards as the hound made into range, connecting on the top of the dog's skull effectively caving it in with little effort. The force from the blow snapped the wooden shaft holding the head of the mace, disabling the weapon entirely.
However, the body kept moving forward, crashing into the man's chest, knocking him onto his back. The corpse kept going, tumbling over the man's face, coating his shirt in a thick layer of mucus and blood from the head wound.
Before the man could stand up and regain his footing. A hound was on top of him. He held his arms up, bracing the snapping maw with his forearm just under the hound's jaw. It was taking all of his strength to hold up the breast as he had no leverage to push back.
"GET IT THE FOCK OFF MEE," the Trader shouted, barely holding the mutt back away from his face. The hound snapped again at his cheek nearly tearing a chunk of flesh out of his face.
Jaune wasted no time, running over at a full sprint. As he reached the tussle, the Knight cocked back his right leg and kick-stomped the hound. The beast, letting out a cry of pain as Jaune's boot met the right side of its head. His kick was enough to toss the animal completely off the Trader and onto its side.
Before the hound could get back up and recover. Jaune rushed forth with Ira Rubrum in a reverse grip, raising the blade up high and thrusting it downwards into the mutt's ribs. He clamped both of his hands around the blade, wrenching it back and forth, twisting the sword to cause as much damage as possible. The hound, squealing out in pain as Jaune carved its insides out like poultry.
Jaune yanked Ira Rubrum out of the corpse, whirling around to meet another hound bolting to him. The dog leapt towards his face, the Knight sidestepped, chopping down from the right diagonally in a smooth pirouette. Ira Rubrum tearing through the vertebral column and cleaning slicing through the inner organs.
Both halves of the fourth hound fell to the ground in a wet slap. Blood spilt out from the open wound, the upper half liquidating every fluid along with even the intestines pouring their putrid contents out. The hind legs falling separately from the front; femoral arteries spurting out onto the ground, painting it red.
The final hellhound stood its ground a few feet from the battle. It had obviously waited for an opening but never found one to press. Now the hound was alone and without its pack.
It growled loudly, trying to intimidate Jaune. The boy stood his ground shield and sword in hand. The hound bowed its head, ready to spring forward.
Just as the hound moved to attack him, Jaune met the challenge with his shield. He didn't let the monster get more than a foot from where it had started; bashing the corner of his guard into the hound's skull, using it as a crude striking edge.
Just like the first two hounds, Jaune shattered this one's skull; killing it almost immediately. The corner of the heater shield digging into the bone, pulling it out revealed tufts of hair coated with blood and flesh.
Jaune looked around for anything that wanted to rush out of the woods. Finding nothing, Jaune turned back to the cart, tossing his weapons into the back.
He was fortunate that Hellhounds were no more complicated to deal with than wolves. For his overall lack of training and experience, Jaune thought he had done quite well. It was nowhere near where his younger sister was or even his father, but that was expected. Jaune had watched how they fought and copied their style enough to be able to replicate parries, blocks, and ripostes.
Wait... I forgot about the Trader.
"Please don't be dead," Jaune repeated to himself several times in his head. He ran around the side of the cart, hoping not to find a body. Instead, he found the man laid out like a drunk who lost his way home from the bar. A constant wheeze escaped from the man's mouth, and he clutched his diaphragm most likely having the wind knocked out of him. The actual harm to the man was his now blood-stained tunic which was most likely ruined now.
"Come on, get up - I can't have you dying on me," Jaune commanded as he held his hand out to the man. The Trader accepted his offer in a daze and was brought to his feet. "Someone needs to drive the wagon."
I could probably do it, but I would have to dump the wagon or explain to the guards why I'm the one driving it.
"Oh, my fockin' head is on fire," he cursed as he held a hand to the back of his head. There wasn't any blood, but he most likely had a first-degree concussion. Jaune dug inside the wagon and tossed him a bottle of ale. The Trader cheerfully accepted and limped back to his cart. Beer was practically a cure-all and mild pain reliever.
"So, laddie, how did ye learn them fancy moves," the Trader asked in a more noticeable slurred tongue. It had been several hours since the incident on the road. Nothing else had bothered the two men except the occasional call of a monster from within the wood. Both men put their buzzed heads together and sang a few drinking songs to pass the time as they approached Beacon. They also shared some small talk on the road as well while taking turns driving the cart.
The Trader's name was actually Kaedin, and he seemed like a pleasant guy. He worked for a merchant in Vale, peddling his employer's goods to the surrounding villages. Kaedin was also a bard and not much of a fighter. He spent more time writing ballads hoping to make it big one day. Which reflected his fighting style... or lack thereof.
"My father taught me," Jaune gave a half-truth to Kaedin to spare him from the stress of knowing he had a self-taught adventurer as his escort. It was probably for the better that nobody knew about it. Jaune was a step up from town guards (for how useful they could be), but he was not quite the knight in shining armour he wanted to become, yet. "I also did some work on my own. I even killed a vampire."
"Bloody hell," the man looked back in astonishment. "You killed a fuckin' vampire!"
The was the same reaction most of the townsfolk had when Jaune waltzed in with a humanoid's head. However, it still didn't improve his luck with women, only some gossip that his sisters refused to share. It got him some attention from the Count of Bar and earned him a decent friendship with the noble's second son.
"Yeah, it was only a fledgeling... a recently turned vampire who hasn't fed yet," Jaune tried to humbly deflect the praise. That was probably his hardest fight yet. He was lucky that the fledgeling did not have the powers of a full vampire, however. If that had been the case, Jaune could have easily found himself among the undead. The silver sword helped as well, but Jaune was pretty sure it was because of the former.
"Don't fuckin', "It was only a fledgeling," me! I only know of three men who killed vampires in my time on this putrid planet. Two of them were all old as shite and could barely take a piss standin' up! You're the third, and ye killed a vampire before ye even grew hair on yer chin."
Jaune didn't know if he should be insulted by that last part. The most he ever managed to grow on his face was some stubble. It being blonde made it more than invisible to the naked eye. His dad had a full beard and if he ever managed to shave it, would grow back in a matter of days.
"Thanks," Jaune said. I guess...
To some of the villagers in his hometown, Jaune was seen as a hero for slaying the vampire. Of course, none of the peasants knew about the rest of the brood hiding deep in the forest. That was between him and the Count, who dispatched his men to clear it out at the loss of half the battalion. One hundred fifty men lost in mere minutes before they managed to subdue the clutch and seal the cave permanently. Luckily they covered it up saying the soldiers went to clear out a bandit camp and ran into a werewolf along the way. Kept panic down for the most part when they claimed they had slain the werebeast.
Five days had passed as the two men rode the carriage to Vale. It was mostly silent for that period as more and more soldiers appeared along the roads. They thought it best not to attract attention to themselves with armed guards looking for a chance to seize their goods.
Not that Jaune couldn't stop them, of course. Most town guards were merely conscripts and drunks forced to throw on a gambeson and mail. So, it was often that town guards were made up of less than reputable members of society. The Vale City Guard consisted of proper soldiers, but most fit the former description. Bar had a professional garrison trained by the Count of Bar himself and outfitted by Jaune's father. It was why the town managed to grow to a few thousand residents, and Jaune lived among the craftsmen or middle class.
The higher concentration of soldiers meant that Jaune was getting closer to Vale. Or... there was higher activity of bandits in the area. Both were okay because the soldiers would serve as a distraction while Kaedin and Jaune got away.
"Oi laddie," Kaedin shouted from the driver's bench. "Welcome to Vale!"
The massive city walls appeared from just around a bend on the road. Thick stone and deep trenches surrounded the metropolis. The walls must have been twenty feet thick! The entrance Jaune came up to was a drawbridge over a mote. The bridge protected by a wooden spike wall and ditches dug out by soldiers.
The road led farther into the city and ended in a bustling marketplace. Here, dozens of merchants stood behind their stalls shouting at random citizens, trying to pitch their goods. The road was filled with hundreds of city-goers busy trading for food and supplies on the cobblestone plaza. Mercenaries and adventurers were looking to sell loot from their expeditions.
Hundreds of red-slated rooves dotted the landscape around him. The wood and stone buildings showed age in this ancient city but stood with the strength of a thousand men. Everything was alive! Jaune doubted Bar could ever live up to the capital even if they had a thousand years!
"Alright laddie, this is where we part ways," Kaedin waved and hopped off the wagon. "If we meet again, maybe we'll do some trading. I might even hire ye to guard my wagon."
Jaune waved goodbye and fell into the crowd. He then began perusing the marketplace. Maybe he could find something useful and haggle for a better price before he had to show up at Beacon. There were some nice swords here and there that were up to par with his own weapons or leagues beyond them. Jaune spotted a crossbow and lacking a ranged option he might have picked it up if not for the price. Twelve-hundred Lien was way too much for his blood.
"Excuse me, sorry..."
Jaune continued on his way, leaving the marketplace behind. He needed to find Beacon and get there before Initiation started or any grand plans could get underway. Just as he turned around, something collided with his chest, knocking whoever hit him onto the ground.
"Oofff," the young girl grunted as she fell back.
Tiny, cute, and probably way out of his league... was all Jaune could describe her as. Delicate like a rose petal would fit her pretty well too. She seemed to be younger than the Knight. Several thoughts crossed his mind before he realised he had been staring at her for far too long and his mind threw itself back into gear.
Damnit Jaune! Control yourself! You're supposed to be a knight!
Jaune could barely feel her hit him. She merely glanced off the boy's breastplate and may have been run over by Jaune if he hadn't seen her fall down. The girl's two wide silver eyes hidden beneath a red cloak looked up at him in a daze.
"Oh, I'm so sorry," Jaune quickly apologised as he lifted her up. The girl was surprisingly light. He couldn't feel any pressure from her grip either. "Are you all right?"
She patted down her clothes, trying to get the dust off. Jaune noted the girl was clad in various shades of red from vermillion to crimson that matched her hair. She wore a black and red shirt bound under a matching corset, leading into a skirt. On her back, she carried a scythe with a wooden haft.
"Yeah, sorry about running into you," she apologised nervously. "My Big-Sis abandoned me to go chase her friends. I started walking around the market and then got lost." After she made sure she was clean, the girl looked up to him. "A-Are you an Initiate too?' Her face was noticeably reddened, displaying her embarrassment.
How did she know I'm an Initiate?
"Y-Yeah, this place is a bit confusing," Jaune replied mindlessly, scratching the back of his head. A tinge of sweat on his brow. Jaune now remembered how bad he was with girls. His hormones acted up, and he could barely string together a sentence because he would get so nervous. At least here in Vale, Jaune had some anonymity to his identity, so he could simply fade out of anybody's minds.
"Oh, I-I'm an Initiate too," Jaune excitedly stammered in agreement, answering her question. They both seemed to be nervously stuttering and were equally embarrassed. That might have been why this conversation was going swimmingly for the two so far.
"REALLY," the girl nearly shrieked in excitement. "You're going to Beacon too!" She was probably more pumped about being at the academy than Jaune was. The girl seemed more socially awkward than Jaune was, but he didn't really mind. "Oh, I-I almost forgot! My name's Ruby Rose! And are those longswords?!" She moved between sentences, barely taking a breath. Ruby had no regard for her appearance as her focus was entirely on Jaune at the moment.
Yep, she's pretty awkward. Kind of ironic coming from me...
"Uh, my name's Jaune. Jaune Arc," Jaune slowly introduced himself to give off of vain attempt at confidence through a blush. "This is Ira Rubrum. My other sword is Crocea Mors."
He withdrew Ira Rubrum and held it by the base of the blade. Ruby quickly snatched it from him and examined the edge and fuller. Jaune was a weapon's aficionado himself, but she was more excited about seeing someone's sword than the person attached to it.
"Steel core plated with silver," Ruby muttered to herself. She examined the blade as a master would, taking in every detail of the high-grade silver.
The Mistrali Silver Jaune forged the blade with was hard to come by, not to mention expensive. He managed to snag himself some from a merchant passing through town and nearly bankrupted himself in the process. But it was worth it for the pure silver.
"You really like weapons," Jaune mentioned in an attempt to keep the conversation going. He didn't want to lose her since she was the first person Jaune had run into and was planning to go to Beacon as well. So, keeping the topic to something they both seemed interested in was all he had at the moment.
"Huh," Ruby snapped out of whatever trance she was in. "Y-Yeah, I love weapons... and armour! But nothing compares to my baby, Crescent Rose!" Ruby pulled out her scythe swung with around with surprising grace, twirling it around in one hand. She most definitely outclassed him when it came to handling weapons. It may be a good idea to pair up with her. Jaune could hopefully ensure his long-term survival.
However, Jaune had never heard of a hero who wielded a scythe. A farmer might have used one to try defending himself from wolves or the occasional wraith. However, when facing the latter, it usually leads to the person's death. Scythes were never meant to be used to fight monsters or people for that matter.
"Cool," Jaune complimented, taking Ira Rubrum back. "So what kind of abilities do you have? I only have one, and it is only useful on the undead. I call it Arclight." He was kind of embarrassed to mention his low level. Jaune was sure this girl would crush him in an actual fight. However, Jaune needed to prod for information on his potential friend and ally. "It's a flash of sunlight, basically."
"Wow, I have something just like that," Ruby mentioned with an almost curious tone. "Oh-oh-oh, I also have another, and it's really really cool!" Her tone bounced back to her more excited one.
That meant she was somewhere around level fifteen. After level ten, you could unlock a new ability every five levels. The main issue with new powers was their usefulness. Some skills were utterly useless for anything related to combat. Anybody could unlock a power, but it was a gamble. You might get be able to enhance your strength or be able to talk to birds. They were also determined by your upbringing or your personality, so a child with a bad temper could unlock a skill related to fire.
"I have my first ability that I call, 'Crimson Flash,' and it allows me to move faster than the eye can see, and my second move is a stun attack with my eyes. I call that one the 'Silver Eyes.'" Ruby tried to sound cool at that last part, but Jaune wasn't going to call her out on it; especially when she could kick his ass in twenty different ways and have no way to stop her.
"Nice," Jaune replied with a sympathetic tone, continuing to head in the direction where had been going originally. Ruby followed beside him. "So, where are you from? I just arrived from Bar a few minutes ago."
He hoped that the question wasn't too forward, diverting the topic in another more personal direction. However, if Ruby didn't know where Beacon was and got lost, Jaune assumed she wasn't from around here. The boy also wanted to get to know her a little bit before they made it to the Academy. Especially if they were going to be attending classes in the future together; Jaune needed all of the allies he could get.
"Ummm, I'm from Patch," Ruby answered, her voice changing to a more neutral laid-back tone. She seemed to be a bit more comfortable now after getting out of the initial embarrassment from their meeting. "My sister and I got off the ship an hour ago... and I've never been to Vale before."
So, Ruby's older sister abandons her in one of the largest cities on the planet. One that she doesn't know or has ever been to. Yet, she expects Ruby to be able to find her way around with no problems. Just how irresponsible is this older sister?
Before Jaune could contemplate the situation further, he heard shouting and fast-paced footsteps coming up from behind the pair. He wasn't even able to turn around as a man threw something into his arms. Or more like slapped something against his chest and let it fall into his hands.
Jaune looked up to see a fast-moving blonde male standing a few feet away from the pair. The man in question turned around as he gave Jaune the object. Yet, he was still on his toes, preparing to bolt at that very moment.
"Yo, watch that for me," the man shouted, turning to run away from the pair. "I'll be back for it later!"
Jaune continued to follow the man with his eyes as he vanished into the crowd. The boy had no idea what just happened, standing there shocked from the surprise. A puzzled look on both Jaune's and Ruby's face. They each looked down at each other for confirmation that had just happened.
Neither of them could say anything as another man shoulder-checked Jaune, nearly throwing him to the floor. He managed to catch himself with some help from Ruby, who grabbed his arm and kept him from tumbling forward. The Knight looked back up to see an older man wearing an apron along with a boy about Jaune's age running towards where the blonde man went.
"What was that," Ruby asked for clarification, stating what was on both of their minds. It may have been too much all at once for her to wrap her mind around it. Jaune could barely do it himself.
"I don't know..." Jaune replied, mimicking Ruby's confusion. He looked down at the object that had been given to him by the blonde man.
It was a bright green apple. Freshly picked sometime this morning. Obviously, the boy who gave the fruit to Jaune had stolen it and got caught in the process. Yet, leaving his stolen goods with somebody he didn't know was a significant risk. Why would the thief even attempt it in the first place?
"So, what are you going to do with it," Ruby asked, looking down at the stolen fruit.
Can't really return it, since I have no clue where the Vendor's stand is. But I should be careful with how I answer, Ruby might not like it.
Jaune didn't want Ruby to get angry with him and just up and leave. So, he needed to play a neutral card in this scenario.
"Do you want it," Jaune offered, holding up the apple to Ruby. She shook her head, giving her answer. "Then I'll keep it for now." He dropped the apple into his satchel. "If we run into the guy who it was stolen from, I'll give it back."
"Ok, good," Ruby said, not giving Jaune anything definite as to her thoughts. She paused for a moment, letting a silence grow between them. "So, should we go find where the Initiation Speech is? I'm pretty sure someone can give us directions."
That reminded Jaune of something, he really didn't know where Beacon was either.
"Yeah, let's go..."
[A half-hour later]
As Jaune and Ruby meandered their way up to the Academy, he began to notice some things. There were several adventuring types hanging out by the front gates of the compound. Judging by the higher quality of their garb, which consisted of full-plate, leather and mail, gambesons, or a combination of all three; they seemed to be more experienced students. Maybe even upperclassmen?
This boded well for Jaune as he looked the part. The boy didn't seem to stick out in any way besides his long blonde hair. Just another knight on his way to join Beacon Academy.
Beacon itself was a stone's throw from the King's Palace, in the centre of the cosmopolitan heartland of Vale. The palace was absolutely astounding to gawk at. The tall twisting towers of what could have been a fortress in its own right dwarfed the city. Blue-slated roofing and marble stonework came together to form a masterpiece.
Frankly, nothing else in the city could really stand up to the palace in comparison. Only Beacon, which had just started to come into view had that right.
Jaune and Ruby rounded the last bend in the street, stopping as they first laid eyes upon the structure. Each had the dumbest smiles on their faces just out of sheer excitement coursing through their veins. Jaune himself was terrified standing before what was going to be his new home for the foreseeable future.
The high walls of the school made the castle look pitiful in comparison. Cobble roads gave way to grey marble tiles and beautiful gardens. Every open wall was covered in some form of vegetation ranging from flowers to the most amazing and exotic herbs he had ever seen. Jaune had lost himself entirely while basking in the sights.
Passing through the gates, Jaune was able to get a more appreciating view of the inner sanctum. The gardens only grew more ornate, extending all throughout the grounds and encompassing many more architectural styles. Marble sculptures of heroes stood like sentinels; posed in various combat stances or even in the typical heroic posture, sword and shield in hand.
Ruby spun around, getting a good look at everything around her. She was cherishing every minute of this. The huge smile on her face and those wide eyes displayed every ounce of her glee at this moment.
"Jaune, this is AMAZING," Ruby gushed loudly, attracting the attention of several others. "Beacon looks like it's straight out of a fairy tale!"
It really did, and Jaune had no way to disagree. Cleary the entire look they were going for here was to be a monument to the legacy of Vale's heroes. Maybe it was more inspired by the mythical and romantic aspects of those stories?
"You've got that right," Jaune agreed with barely contained enthusiasm, doing another look-see.
I should have taken a trip to Vale before this. I feel cheated.
However, getting to see this with Ruby for the first time made up for that. The two were quickly becoming friends, having ecstatically discussed weapons and armour on the way here. At least their amazement when it came to being able to simultaneously lose all trains of thought while beholding a masterpiece was something else they could share.
"I can't believe how many people are here," Ruby noted, staring at the crowd of prospective students. "Are we going to class with everyone here? Ughhh, their weapons are sooo cool! I wish I could see all of them!"
Jaune kind of wanted to check out whatever these other students were packing too. There were a few of them carrying around some more unusual weapons like chain swords and what looked to be a modified crossbow. Too bad they didn't have the time.
"Be careful, Ruby," Jaune warned in a playful tone. "Crescent Rose might get jealous."
"Sphhhfff," she blew through her lips before outright laughing. Ruby clearly didn't take it seriously but found it funny. "Nah, my heart only belongs to Crescent Rose. She knows I like weapons... It's just like meeting another person. They're just an extension of someone else's personality!"
Huh... that was surprisingly deep. But I understand.
"I see," Jaune said, contemplating her words. He cupped his chin, coming up with an idea. "Maybe there are some other vampire slayers among them. I want to see their methods, and maybe you can check out their weapons too."
It was a win-win situation. Jaune wanted to learn some more tricks of the trade, and Ruby wanted to see someone else's weapons. However, he didn't consider how Ruby was going to react to this news.
"Wait, Jaune," Ruby looked over to him with an extremely excited and almost giddy expression. "You killed a vampire!" The last part was loud enough to where more people started to take notice of the pair. For how small she was and how quiet she seemed; Ruby could be louder than a band of soldiers. "How did you do it?! Did you use the silver sword or did you use magic?! I bet that fight must have been so cool!" The girl was also extremely fast spoken, and Jaune could barely keep track of her.
"It was only a fledgeling," Jaune whined as he tried to explain the scenario. He hated when people over-praised him for a task that could have been done by any second-rate adventurer. "So, it's barely a vampire."
More of a superhuman actually. Fledgelings had faster reaction times and movement speed than normal humans or faunus. Most usually had the strength of a bull or could snap trees in half with a single punch. Yet, accounts from other vampire hunts don't mention them fighting at what should be their full strength.
"Still cool," Ruby insisted. "We don't have those on Patch!"
Patch doesn't have vampires? They might have killed them all off, or they're just in hiding...
"Aha, there you are," a voice called out from off to the side.
Jaune turned to see the blonde thief that he and Ruby had run into earlier. The man was about the same height as Jaune; maybe shorter by an inch or two. However, he was much more heavily built. His open shirt, exposing his inner pectoral muscles and abs told Jaune enough. A monkey tail swaying back and forth distinguished him as a faunus.
The man wore only a white shirt and blue trousers as his garb. Said trousers only went down to his mid-calf, leaving his legs open to the air. The only armour the man wore was a pair of vambraces made from leather and red-painted steel.
On his back, he carried a red and gold coloured staff. The two ends of the weapon were covered in strange runes Jaune had never seen before. Maybe it was some sort of enchanted bo staff?
Jaune thought he may have been a sailor or some sort of Rogue Class member given his choice of weaponry.
"So, do you still have it," he asked, not specifying the item he wanted. A confident grin on his face.
Jaune was extremely surprised to see this other boy had gone through the effort to recover a stolen fruit. Why he didn't just grab another one from some other poor soul's booth stumped the Knight. Yet, he also followed Jaune and Ruby all the way up to Beacon Academy. Most of the Thief's actions were not making sense at the moment.
Frankly, Vale seemed to be much more eventful than Bar ever was. Meeting Ruby was probably the best part about it and a welcome trade from where he came from. Yet, Jaune had a sinking feeling that this was not going to be his last surprise. Hopefully, it was better than this one.
"Have what," Jaune asked for clarification, feigning ignorance.
"The apple," the thief admitted. "I know you have it in your bag."
"How do you know that," Jaune asked again, his tone unchanging.
"There's an apple-shaped bulge in the side of your bag," the thief pointed out.
"If that is so, then why should I give it to you," Jaune pressed, questioning the man with a stern tone. "Also, why trust me to be an accomplice when you don't even know who I am?
"Because pretty please with a cherry on top," the man said, pressing his hands together and pointing them at Jaune. "You also seem like a roguish gentleman like myself that I could trust."
I look like a rogue? What kind of backwards logic is this? You're not supposed to trust other criminals...
Before Jaune could respond to the man's pleas, somebody bumped into his side. It was a brush between their shoulders for only a moment. The other person apologised and went on their way towards the academy.
However, the man noticed something was a miss. He reached down to his waist, finding something that should have been there to no longer be. The man spun around, looking at his feet to see if he had dropped something.
"Somebody stole my coin purse," he said with disbelief oozing from his voice. A look of dread and annoyance on his face.
Jaune and the Rogue looked off in the direction that other person had run off to at the same time. Near the main entrance to the great hall of the Academy stood a young woman clad entirely in black. She held up the missing coin purse, jiggling the bag playfully just to spite the boy.
Jaune swore he could have seen her smile.
"I think someone collected on your bad karma," the Knight said, turning to the Rogue and tossing him the apple. A shit-eating grin on Jaune's face appeared.
The other boy didn't seem to find any delight in this situation. He rubbed the back of his head, showing the embarrassment from being burned by another thief. Jaune presumed he also felt like an idiot.
"Yeah," Ruby agreed, taking on a neutral tone. Yet, sounding like she was on a crusade against the boy. "What you did was wrong. You-
As Ruby was right about to get her words out, yet another person arrived on the stage. Jaune's day was only going to get more interesting from here. He knew it.
"Oh, Ruby~," another voice called out in a musical tone.
Jaune turned to see another woman standing a few feet away from the group. A smile dripping with unrestrained confidence on her lips and her hands on her hips. The Knight was struck silent by her presence.
The woman was another blonde like the Rogue and Jaune. A long golden mane came down her back, ending just below her hips. Every inch of it glowed in the sunlight much like the girl attached to it. Two lilac eyes, differing from Jaune's own cobalt irises stared at the group with a particular fire to them. The girl's lips contorted into a Chesire grin that stretched from ear to ear.
Her looks were attractive on a different level than Ruby's. The younger was gorgeous in her own way. Yet, this older woman who seemed to be about Jaune's age was the epitome of beauty. More full-figured compared to her younger sister and other teens. Something that appealed on a more primal level. Everything about the girl drew attention to her.
Jaune continued to stare at her like he would a piece of art until her voice brought him to reality.
"I see you have found some friends," she continued, sporting a playful tone. "Two tall, handsome blondes nonetheless." She stopped for a moment and cupped her cheeks with a gasp. "You were totally checking both of them out, weren't you?! You wanted both of them at the same too!?" She let out another comical gasp. "Ruby, what would Dad think of this!?"
"Yang~" Ruby turned blood red, crying out as she went ramrod straight into her arms. The stunningly beautiful blonde who Jaune now knew as Yang giggled at the smaller girl's expense. And Jaune's loss as well because his cheeks were set aflame. The Rogue didn't seem to care at all.
Yang was dressed in all brown with orange highlights. Her outfit consisted of a leather jacket exposing some of her cleavage with a scarf wrapped around her neck. The rest of her clothes reflected the same style as her pants and riding boots, both being dark brown. It wasn't as unusual as Ruby's outfit, but it seemed she was more suited to riding horses. Jaune couldn't see any weapons on her, but she did wear a pair of gauntlets. Maybe she was a brawler?
The older sister let go of, the younger, allowing Ruby to wallow in her embarrassment. She gave a comical bow, placing her hand on her chest, the other coming off to the side, and one leg extending backwards.
"Yang Xiao Long, soon to be badass of Beacon Academy at your service," she confidently stated for the world to know. "Who might you gentlemen be?" Yang looked Jaune dead in the eyes with a stare that could kill a werewolf. A toothy grin on her lips magnified the powerful aura she gave off.
"Ummm, Jaune," he answered curtly, not exposing any intimidation. "I ran into your sister in the marketplace."
Yang turned her gaze unto the third blond in their party. "And you?"
"Sun Wukong," he finally revealed his name hesitantly. "I was just made to look like the biggest idiot in Vale..."
Yang snorted at that. "Sounds like a fun story," she said. "But I've got a spot for us in the Main Hall, so let's go."
The main hall of Beacon Academy was bustling with activity. More than outside as hundreds of people were crammed into a single room, leaving no space to sit. Other than the small group with Jaune, he recognised nobody else. The sheer number caused Jaune to grow nervous as he had no way of knowing how the Initiation would go down.
A woman strode up to a stage and grabbed everyone's attention. She wore a white blouse and a faded black cape that fed into darker pants and black leather boots. The woman carried a wand in one hand, and a scroll in the other. Her blonde hair shone brilliantly in the light as it illuminated the rest of her figure. Jaune thought the woman must have been a sorceress or some kind of mage.
She made a small announcement, outing herself as Professor Goodwitch, and welcomed up another person. An older man sauntered up to the centre stage.
The man, only known as Professor Ozpin, looked to be in his fifties given his white hair. However, his facial features didn't corroborate that idea, making him seem younger; which may have been the case. A pair of spectacles sat on his nose, yet he didn't seem to use them; only sweeping through the crowd with his unyielding gaze with seemingly no problems.
Unlike the Sorceress, the man's outfit was much darker. He wore only a pair of black slacks with a matching blazer over a green vest. Around his neck, a small cross was pinned to a green cowl. In his right hand, he was wielding a cane, in the other, a small mug.
"Good afternoon," he began in a neutral tone. "Each of you has decided to undertake a tremendous journey. Many of you wish to become adventurers, warriors, and even Guardians of Remnant." His voice was rich yet had an almost cryptic undertone. "The Four Kingdoms of Remnant: Vale, Atlas, Vacuo, and Mistral are experiencing a time of great peace and prosperity between them. Our job is to uphold this peace." He took a pause. "That means you will fight to keep this harmony. Not just in Vale, for you are the future of Remnant itself." He took another pause. "However, if any of you thought that was true... you are wrong. I only see wasted potential and unrestrained egos at the moment. It is my duty as the Headmaster of Beacon Academy to separate those who do not have the potential to defend our peace from those who do. But for now, I will direct all of you to Professor Goodwitch. I wish the best of luck to all of you, and I wish to speak to those who show potential in one week."
Nobody dared to clap at his speech. It felt like a slap to face, honestly. Just separating the wheat from the chaff at the time. That was the goal of whatever Ozpin had cooked up.
"Well, that was kind of depressing," Sun quipped. It didn't make Jaune feel any less anxious right now.
The Sorceress stepped up and took Ozpin's place.
"Tonight you will all sleep in the ballroom. I encourage you to relax and prepare yourselves for the tasks you will face over the next week. I will personally summon those who will be given Tasks for the coming week. Those Initiates will have to recruit those they find suitable for the mission. Your partnerships for the week will not be a permanent arrangement. However, we expect all of you to work within the best of your abilities together. Those who remain after this week will be official students of Beacon."
With that, Goodwitch followed Ozpin off the stage and retreated to an unknown location.
"Ok, gang," Yang began in an upbeat tone. "Uh, where do we go now?" Jaune chuckled to himself internally at the tone switch. None of them knew where the ballroom was.
"I think-" Jaune was about to speak up as something distracted him. Or someone.
A young woman clad almost entirely in white. Jaune could hardly find the words to describe her. She was beautiful. A goddess on Remnant. Her features were flawless. Not a single mark on her pale skin. Long silver hair flowed freely in a sideways ponytail that was white as snow. The rest of her was covered by a set of loose-fitting robes. Only blue highlights in her outfit broke the nearly monochromatic scheme.
From a distance, she seemed to be short. Petite more than likely. The woman was probably smaller than Ruby.
However, as Jaune continued to watch the girl, he noticed something about her. She had an almost melancholic expression. The girl did not attempt to speak to anybody or even recognise their presence. Frankly, she looked lonely, even standing in a crowd where any person could make that change.
"Ummm, hello," Yang called out to Jaune. The lack of response warranted a more physical intervention. As Yang was about to grab Jaune's shoulders and spin him around, she noticed what he had been looking at. "Oh, I see... You see something you like?" Yang tried to hold back a grin while Ruby didn't fare any better cupping her hands over her mouth.
"Uhh, Yeah, i-it's just that I," Jaune stuttered, trying to put together a coherent sentence. "Kind of... I'm not sure."
Jaune was dumbstruck by the woman's sheer beauty. Who wouldn't be, seeing an angel? His hormones surely didn't help as their glands dumped gallons of the stuff into his bloodstream. His brain turned into a jumbled mess, just thinking about her. The boy's entire world had just been yanked out from under him, thrown down a flight of stairs, and, finally, dropped off a cliff.
His reaction was different when it came to the other girls he had just met. Something about this particular one. Jaune didn't know why.
"Just go talk to her," Sun spoke up from behind Ruby, giving his advice. Jaune didn't even know why he was still here. "Don't think about it, just do it!"
How can I even speak to her? I've always been terrible with girls! But her... Do I even have a chance?
"What he said, Lover Boy," Yang said, grabbing Jaune's shoulders and pushing him over to where the girl was. "Go talk to her, invite her to join us! It'll be a great time!"
Without any resistance from Jaune, Yang had dropped him off a few feet away from the girl. Luckily, her mind was focused on something else at the moment. She hadn't even acknowledged the scraping coming from the bottom of Jaune's boots as they ground against stone.
Jaune felt as though he was thrown overboard into a swirling pool of sharks. His friends, if he could even call them that, refused to throw him a lifeline. His throat was dry, he didn't know what to say.
Dad said to be confident. Confidence is key.
Before Jaune could even get a word out, she turned around with an annoyed expression on her face. Both of her eyes narrowed, zeroing in the boy standing before her. She crossed both her arms, giving the impression that she was closed off. The girl didn't seem interested in him at all.
Standing this close to the girl, Jaune was better able to appreciate her features. Her pearlescent skin was not unblemished. Only a single scar going down her left eye. Yet, that did not detract from her beauty. The girl, in return, stared back at him with two opal blue eyes in contrast to Jaune's cobalt.
"U-Um," he tried to begin, taking in a deep breath. "Hi." Jaune's brain fizzled and died. He didn't know how to talk to girls, and he was just thrown into the deep end. "I-I was wondering if you would like to join our group? You didn't seem to be with anyone, and I thought I could introduce you to my friends!"
Jaune felt relief from getting all of that out. He looked back to see Ruby waving at the two of them. Sun and Yang had massive grins on their faces.
"And who are you," she asked in a bitter tone. It really did seem like she wanted nothing to do with him or anybody right now.
"I-I'm Jaune. Jaune Arc," he greeted with a nervous smile. "Vampire Slayer."
The expression on her face only looked more displeased. Maybe she had something against Knights or Vampire Slayers? Or maybe Jaune specifically? However, it could be whatever soured her mood in the first place, and Jaune only added onto it.
"Are you another one of those brutes who is going to try wooing me with their feats?" Before Jaune could reply, she quickly up her mind and with a loud huff, stomped out of the room. The girl muttered something else under her breath about him, "Only wanting her for her name."
Jaune felt defeated... if he was describing the feeling correctly. He had only wanted to talk to her, but she misunderstood him. Maybe it was best just to give up on her for now and come back to her when she seemed to be in a better mood. Jaune had a few bad rejections in the past, so he only got used to the feeling. But it still stung his ego.
"Well that was rude," Ruby stated in what was probably the closest she could be to being irritated. Jaune wanted the situation to end, but Ruby pressed farther. "Jaune you only went to go talk to her, and she rejected you like that! You didn't even try anything romantic!"
"Ruby it's okay, really," Jaune tried to calm the growing inferno that was Ruby Rose. "I know how to take a hint. She's obviously mad about something and showed up at the wrong time." One of Jaune's most important lessons from his sisters was learning how to take a hint from women. Whenever Jaune had been rejected in the past, he didn't try to push any harder lest the rejection comes back to bite him even harder.
"No," she shouted at nobody and everybody. Those standing around her reeled back from the sudden aggressiveness. "I'm going to give her a piece of mind!" She trudged off in search of the girl. Her older sister followed behind, giddy about something.
"I love it when she's like this," Yang complimented her sister's actions to the two knights as she followed Ruby. The buxom Blonde cheerfully skipped behind the smaller girl as they disappeared into a corridor. "See, you guys later!"
Well, that was a thing...
"I like the shorter one already," Sun mentioned out of nowhere as he and Jaune were alone now.
"Yeah, those two are pretty interesting," Jaune agreed, kneading his forehead. "Too bad I'm used to seeing this kind of thing." He turned to leave the room with everyone else. "I'm going to find the ballroom, you can do whatever you want." Jaune waved back to the faunus.
Not like I have anything else to do today...
Well that was chapter one! I just finished this at around 10:30 central time and I still have to study for my lab exam tomorrow. I even pulled an all-nighter just to hammer out half of this thing.
The idea of levels in this fic is not totally from video games. I take it as with every level you gain, you collect more strength in certain regards. You achieve a higher level of proficiency in your class and are rewarded with a stats boost and a raise to one of your reseviours. It's like working out actually. You start at level one with whatever natural strength you already developed. By the time you get to level twenty. You can squat 300+ pounds like a beast. You can also develop your body in different ways. I chose to develop my body for aesthetics while my friend went for cardio. He gained a higher level in cardio and can run a 10K without breaking a sweat, so his stamina is off the charts. I can run a 10K but I'll probably die at the end of it. But his body is built for running while I'm built to lift stuff. We still have the same level of fitness but we got there doing different things. So everybody in Remnant is different and can develop their own styles. Think of it more as a state of being.
If you enjoyed this fic, don't worry! I'll get another chapter finished in about a week and a half. Maybe longer since I also need to work on my other fic too. But if this one gets more love I might, key word "might," discontinue it.