“Oi! Kid, where did you buddy Adam go? We can’t seem to get in touch with him.”
Torchwick strolled up to a group of three rather young men who were dressed similarly to Adam but with a bit more ‘white-fang flare’.
“And you won’t. Obviously he doesn’t want to be found.” One of the bigger ones answered, leaning on his huge double headed axe.
“Why didn’t you leave with him?”
“He didn’t tell us to leave so we didn’t. We follow orders, we didn’t get any so we haven’t followed them.” One of the more, average sized boys answered.
“Yeah but aren’t you all part of a ‘team’ or something? Don’t you stick together like besties?” Torchwick asked, putting his own sarcasm into the question.
“No. We aren’t a ‘team’, we’re a squad. There’s a difference.”
Torchwick looked the boy up and down, not sure whether this guy was depressed or he was taking his role to seriously.
“Sounds like a happy atmosphere.”
“It isn’t.” The bigger one replied.
Torchwick looked at the third person, who was yet to say anything, or even move. He had been sitting there the whole time in silence, running a stone across his blade repeatedly, filling the air with a constant ringing sound.
“Weird kids everywhere these days.” Torchwick mumbled under his breath as he turned away from the group. His gaze ended up landing on a small ball of red lying on the floor silently.
The red bundle being Ruby, curled up into what was a makeshift attempt at a foetal position, given being changed up.
“Hey red how’s it goin?” He said, getting up and walking toward her. She remained silent.
“Reeed? Still not talking huh? Oh your wrists aren’t looking to good, in fact, you aren’t looking to good, how you feeling?” Torchwick knelt down by Ruby, leaning closer as if to hear an answer.
But Ruby ignored him and continued to sniffle into her knees. After Cinder left her alone she just became limp. She curled herself up into a ball and remained there for what felt like an eternity. Only Cinder’s words and her painful memories to keep her entertained.
When two men walked back into the room to come get her she remained just as silent and limp as ever. Given she physically wasn’t well and was slowly becoming weaker and weaker, to the point where it was dangerously so but Ruby didn’t even care what state she was in.
When they unbuckled the chain from the wall and yanked on it to get her moving, she remained as dead weight lying on the ground. They yanked again, harder, and even yelled at her, but she didn’t even hear the words they were saying. One of them went so far as to kick her in the gut but she still didn’t move, Ruby felt the blow but everything felt numb, she felt so desensitised from the world, as if she had seen and felt it all.
They ended up dragging her to the door before they decided to lift her up the stairs and outside onto the street of the abandoned city. Ruby didn’t pay attention to anything as she was moved, didn’t look around to see where she was, didn’t look at the stars, or who was around her. In fact when she was thrown quite roughly onto the ground, sprawled out, she simply moved herself back into a ball.
“Simply pathetic.” She heard someone say. She didn’t care, didn’t care about anything, even the fact that she felt like she was dying. Nothing mattered anymore, the only thing that ever did was gone, so why should she.
“Not talking red? Oh well, that’s fine with me. I didn’t really like you anyway.” Torchwick stood back up and walked over to Cinder who was standing in front of Ruby, looking down at her.
“You really broke her didn’t you?”
“We don’t even have a plan. Shouldn’t we have a plan?” Winter questioned as they began to move to the location they were given.
“We don’t need one.” Yang replied.
“We have a plan. It involves waiting for whoever that person was and seeing what they decide to do before we act.”
“But Blake we don’t even know who that guy is. What if they don’t show?”
“Then we beat the shit out of everyone and get Ruby back or we die trying.”
“Don’t forget Weiss.”
The three girls reached their destination ten minutes before the set time, the moon was full and its light shone brightly. The destination was nothing less than abandoned.
“What is it with these guys and abandoned places?”
“Abandoned areas are much easier to carry out ambushes and set up deals than other areas. The lack of people and authorities are the main thing, as well as the lack of caution when it comes to making noise or breaking things, as well as the risk of witnesses. Basically they can do what they want here with little risk of getting caught.”
Both Winter and Yang turned to Blake, raising their eyebrows as the faunas spat out the information in a way that came across as too confident, as if it was coming from firsthand experience.
“Uh?” Winter mumbled.
“It’s just an educated guess.” Blake quickly covered up. Winter didn’t know about her involvement with the White Fang, at least not yet.
“Anyway. When we approach them, the two of you need to be able to control yourselves, no matter what you see you have to hold back and wait for our mysterious helper to make their move first. They obviously know what’s going on, at least more than we do, so we should trust them and not rush in and do something stupid. Understood?”
“Yep” Winter replied with a nod.
Yang on the other hand was staring down the road, clearly not paying attention.
“Are you going to be able to-“
“Yeah yeah I’ll be fine. Just stay out my way if things get bad, I’m not being rude, I’m being serious.”
Blake noticed Yang clenching and relaxing her fists by her sides, before she brought them up to crack her knuckles. Blake grabbed Yang’s shoulder gently and turned her around.
“Yang, it’s not going to go bad. I promise you it won’t.”
“Blake you shouldn’t make promises you can’t keep.”
“I’m keeping this one.” Blake replied sternly, squeezing Yang softly.
Yang looked down at her partner, looking at those unwavering amber’s. Yang saw strength and courage but beneath that she saw love and care. It was those last two things that made Yang relax just a little, it seemed it was Blake’s turn to provide the warmth.
“They’re on their way!” A lookout called back to Cinder and the central group. Immediately people began to move around, taking their positions at various points around the area.
The three of Adam’s boys stood around Ruby, two to the side and one behind her, all standing at arms, the bigger boy forced Ruby to sit in her knees and face the direction her teammates were coming from. Cinder and Torchwick stood off to the left side of Ruby, Mercury and Emerald to the right, the pair looking quite unpleased with the whole situation but nevertheless co-operative. As they walked past Ruby, Emerald couldn’t help but feel the tiniest shred of guilt, even if she didn’t really play a role in what happened to her. But as they stood where they needed, she pushed the feeling away and focused on what was to come.
The three girls were walking down a main street and had been instructed to turn into an alley way. As they followed the directions and turned into the alley, straight down the alley, right in front of it, they saw a small figure wrapped in a red cloak, even from this distance she looked frail and weak.
“Ruby!” Yang was running even before Blake could yell out.
The blonde was bolting down the alley, throwing Blake’s warning into the wind, her mind overridden with the urge to get to her sister and just, hold her.
“Ruby!” She yelled out. She was sure it was loud enough for Ruby to hear, but her little sister didn’t respond to the call.
Blake and Winter were hot on her heels, hoping that the blonde wouldn’t trigger a firing squad or walk straight into a blade. Luckily Blake had always been the fastest of them two, Winter, seemingly just as fast, caught up to Yang before she emerged out the alley way.
“Yang slow down!” Blake demanded, grabbing her partners hand.
“No she’s right there!”
Yang shrugged Blake off of her, she may be slower than the faunas, but she was definitely stronger.
Yang continued to run, stepping out of the alley and onto the road between herself and Ruby. Yang completely ignored the people surrounding the area, focusing on Ruby alone, calling her name out before something wrapped around her foot and brought her to the ground.
“What the fu-“ She looked behind her and found Blake’s scythe wrapped around her ankle. She turned back to Ruby and then she noticed all the armed people around her.
Three around Ruby, Cinder’s group, then more people at the back and off to the side, blocking their escape.
“Ruby!” She called again just as Blake and Winter reached her. Strangely her sister still didn’t reply.
“Ruby it’s me Yang, where here to get you” The only thing resembling a response was the slight sway of Ruby’s body, which could have been credited to her weak state and the gentle breeze that passed through.
“What the-. What did you do to her?!” Yang turned to Cinder, now on her feet and already radiating warmth.
“I did nothing. Well, I didn’t do everything, she did this to herself.” Cinder replied coolly.
“What does that even mean?”
“Of course you wouldn’t understand.”
Yang began to seeth and breath heavily, clenching her fists and trying so hard to listen to Blake. Thankfully Winter stepped in.
“Hey where’s Weiss?” She asked softly.
Ruby’s head shot up at the name, instantly locking eyes with Winter, causing the girl to recoil slightly.
“Winter?” Ruby breathed in such a small voice it pained them all to hear.
It was then that they got a good look at Ruby. Just looking
at her you could tell she wasn’t in good shape, it was her eyes that showed how
bad she was. Their usually silvery, brightness was completely gone, replaced by
a dull grey that seemed to be an empty void that was a continuous blackness.
Her eye’s themselves were wide and frantic, similar to a frightened child, they
were glassy and red from what seemed to be excessive crying.
Her cloak was crinkled and her hair was ruffled and dirty, the red shade darker than what it usually was.
Yang had never seen Ruby’s eyes so dark, she had never seen her sister so weak, so fragile.
“What did they do to you Ruby?” She breathed.
“Ruby, where Weiss?” Winter asked cautiously. There was something in those eyes that frightened her and it gave her a very bad feeling. That feeling only became stronger when Ruby began to wordlessly shake her head and mumble ‘no’ over and over. Ruby tried to shuffle away, but ended up falling over onto her side, she threw her cloak over herself to hide her face.
Yang took a small step forward, but as painful as it was for her too, Blake had to hold her back, just for a little while longer.
“Ruby where is my sister?” Winter repeated, her voice clearly shakier than before.
“Ruby where is she!” Winter stepped toward her, ignoring the tensing of the guards around the red head.
“Winter I’m sorry” Ruby finally answered, moving her head out from under her cloak.
“Sorry about what? Ruby where’s Weiss?” Winter asked again, tears forming at her eyes. Her tears betrayed her questions. She continued to ask when she began to understand what was happening, Winter refused to believe it.
Ruby began to shake her head again, continuing to stare at Winter, and only Winter. “She’s….. Winter she’s….” Ruby struggled, struggled with even those words.
“Ruby please tell me where she is!?” Winter was crying now, but she still yelled. She was already feeling herself crumble inside. ‘This cant be real’
“GONE!” Ruby snapped. “GONE WINTER! SHE’S GONE! SHE’S NEVER COMING BACK!”
“No!” Winter fell to her knees, holding her gaze with Ruby, tears streaming down her cheeks, her resolve shattering and crumbling.
“No she isn’t!”
“Oh my god” Blake breathed, watching the scene unfold. “N-no. Weiss, she couldn’t have-“ Blake stepped back, hand over mouth in disbelief. Her eyes began to tingle and she tried to fight the tears, but she couldn’t hold it, it was too much for her. The white queen to her black knight, it just couldn’t end this way.
Yang stared blankly between Ruby and Winter who were both on the floor, both crying, both falling apart in front of her. Weiss was gone? Yang tore her gaze away from her sister to look at Cinder, who had nothing but neutralism written across her face.
Yang heard Blake’s breath hitch as Cinder answered.
“NO!” Winter yelled, falling onto her hand.
Yang should be feeling sad, she should be taking this in and processing it. But as she looked at her sister, broken and battered, than at Winter, who was in the process of breaking, and thought about the fact that Weiss was gone. All Yang could feel was hatred, hatred and anger all for one person. Cinder.
Ruby squeezed her eyes shut and wished she was deaf at the moment. She couldn’t bear to stand Winter’s cries and yells as she told her the truth. Ruby didn’t expect to see her, didn’t expect to see any of them, but when she heard the girls voice, she immediately became overwhelmed, filled with guilt and sadness. Weiss was her partner, but she was Winter’s sister first, and now she was gone, taken from the both of them.
Lying on her side, withering in the cries of Winter’s cries and hearing Blake’s muffled sobs, she wanted nothing more for her world to end. She prayed for a blade to pierce her, prayed for a bullet to fly through her head, prayed for anything, just to get away. Ruby opened her eyes to look to the heavens and pray for mercy but found herself stopping short of the sky.Ruby found herself looking up at the roof of a building, more importantly looking at the figure on top of it. It was crazy but Ruby didn’t know what was more unbelievable, the fact that Weiss was dead, or the fact that she was looking at a woman, dressed in a white cloak.