RWBY Book 1: Senior Year - It's all in the plumage | Penana
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RWBY Book 1: Senior Year
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  • G: General Audiences
  • PG: Parental Guidance Suggested
  • PG-13: Parents Strongly Cautioned
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RWBY Book 1: Senior Year
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Intro 1 2 3 4 6 7 8 9 10 11
#5
It's all in the plumage
Polydragons
Dec 6, 2015
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24 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!6d9RADw4zBcPCGT7nowaposted on PENANA

"I'll let Professor Peach know you two aren't feeling well," Yang said with a smile as she closed the door to their room. That smile wasn't just for Ruby's and Weiss's benefit. Blake's usually bright friend had found a new level, much like Ruby had. Blake rarely heard Yang whistling a tune, but she was doing it this morning. It was starting to get annoying by the time they left the dormitory. "You are a bit too happy even by your standards. This is more than just winning the pool."165Please respect copyright.PENANAUr3DRRVj3g
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"That certainly is helping," she glowed, "but mostly it's seeing my sister truly happy. You know how I told you during our second semester about losing our mother and how it affected me?" It was a good thing that Beacon's campus was inordinately large for the number of students that went to it. It allowed for conversations to be mostly private between buildings or Blake thought this one wouldn't take place till later.165Please respect copyright.PENANAMXoqltNfms
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Blake knew exactly what conversation Yang was talking about. It might have saved her life, and that wasn't an overstatement with how obsessed she was back then. "Yes, what does that have to do with it?"copyright protection161PENANAyIZboSjMhQ

"I never really told you how it affected Ruby." There was no one they could see in earshot, Yang none the less started to talk in hushed tones. "It's true that she doesn't really remember her mother, but that doesn't mean she didn't feel the lack, especially as she got older. She hides it well, but there has always been a shadow on her happiness. You've never seen her without that shadow, but I have. That means to you she's been acting normal, but I've known better. This is her. Couldn't you tell the difference?"copyright protection161PENANAXCDynDAl01

That had been impossible not to see. Even when she was mad at Yang and trying to hurt her there had been a feeling of joy. "She did seem happier. I just assumed it was the newness of her relationship."copyright protection161PENANAZOAPL0gmXL

"Yes that's part of it, and when they settle that shadow may return," the blonde powerhouse said. "I really don't think it will though. I have a feeling."copyright protection161PENANAwvuvHTn1GF

Blake accepted that instantly. If anyone knew how Ruby ticked it was Yang. "Ok. What about Weiss? Do you think she will be okay?" Blake was deeply worried about her friend, and she could see her going back into her depression even with Ruby to keep her from the darkness. This could be a team effort to help one of their own.165Please respect copyright.PENANAtTZQkKlx11
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"That's trickier," Yang said, paralleling Blake's thoughts. "I mean, to lose your family is bad enough, but knowing just why she was so frosty when we first met..." Yang shook her head, some of her earlier joy lost when contemplating the condition of their friend. "I don't think her self-esteem will come back without help. Ruby will keep her happy, but you saw it last night. Her name was where her confidence started. Without it I think she won't be able to see the rest of what makes her great."165Please respect copyright.PENANAaWsdzj4vD7
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"I agree." Blake decided to let Yang in on her plan. "I have an idea that might help. I could have her work with me on the White Fang."copyright protection161PENANASBSm7zfvAV

"You mean patrolling with you?" Yang asked with confusion. "I thought us not being faunus would just get in the way?"copyright protection161PENANAarzsWL65x7

Blake shook her head. "No, that isn't what I need help with. I need help planning how to get where I want White Fang to be. She has knowledge that would be essential."copyright protection161PENANAdm7bKWU92Z

"You're going to be ambitious beyond reason, aren't you?" There was worry in her voice, and Blake could guess why.copyright protection161PENANAvUBnhIXwey

"Maybe. This won't be easy, but don't worry. I won't push myself like I have in the past."165Please respect copyright.PENANALp59PrDDG0
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"Good," Yang approved. "Then I say go for it. Making use of her, especially in a way that only she can, will only help her ego."copyright protection161PENANA5fHcqs8lBb

Blake nodded, then went into deep thought. Yang let the conversation die, which Blake was thankful for. It had taken time but her friend had learned when it was okay to talk to Blake and when Blake needed to be left to her thoughts.165Please respect copyright.PENANA6aT61eQmLS
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The biggest problem was Weiss's relationship with Ruby, of all things. It was new and Blake didn't want to separate the two. She wanted to be sure they had the time they needed to truly cement their relationship. Ruby was essential to Weiss's well being, and now Blake knew it was helping Ruby get past her own demons.165Please respect copyright.PENANAoVOQ9oaeUN
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At the same time if Weiss was going to help her Blake would need to bring her completely in. This was going to need a lot of planning, and she was pretty sure Weiss was going to bring up things she hadn't thought of. That's one of the reasons Blake needed her.165Please respect copyright.PENANAmGdrQ3TtHz
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Where was the balance?copyright protection161PENANAImrPjXdYq8

Blake was thankful for classes for a second day in a row. Yesterday it was to avoid Weiss, fearing her friend would reignite the fight from last night. Today it was giving her something else to occupy her thoughts because she wasn't coming up with any answers.165Please respect copyright.PENANAtNKmTLBK8m
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Between her first and second class for the day she went to her favorite spot to read. Reading was her great escape, but it also helped her think. In this case it was only serving to keep her relaxed. She kept an eye out for Weiss and Ruby as well. She knew what they were up to, but she didn't know how long they would take. It wasn't that it was any of her business, but talking to Weiss was the only real solution. Weiss could decide how deep she was willing to go. It was her decision to make, not Blake's she realized.copyright protection161PENANArIAHZZoHwq

Unfortunately she didn't see them until the very beginning of their next class. Weiss's favorite, Advanced Dust Manipulation. Yang sat next to Blake on the level above Weiss and Ruby. Yang elbowed Blake with a lopsided grin and whispered "Their hair's still wet." Blake just answered with a sour look. She did notice that Weiss wasn't wearing her coat. It didn't surprise her, but it did look out of place.165Please respect copyright.PENANACwirnsQxGK
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After class she finally had her chance. She found the rest of their clique pulling aside Ruby to undoubtedly tease her without mercy. By now Yang had told the others what had happened last night and this morning, except for what Weiss wouldn't want shared. Even with their friends in JNPR.165Please respect copyright.PENANAl2qzthCnKj
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She'd also gotten her winnings. At the beginning of each month they had been betting on which day the two would end their denial. The bets were small, but over two years they added up.165Please respect copyright.PENANAWe7HB1tcLB
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It was as good of a chance as any. "Weiss, can we talk?"165Please respect copyright.PENANAzo8RPvjF3Z
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"Of course," Weiss smiled brightly. Blake didn't react to it but she was several levels beyond surprised. Weiss didn't smile brightly. Dating Ruby was doing wonders already. We always knew her and Ruby were going to get together eventually, but I don't think any of us could have predicted this, Blake thought to herself as they walked to the side. Blake picked the same spot she had been reading at earlier. It was quiet and a bit secluded without actively hiding. Perfect for what she needed.165Please respect copyright.PENANAqo2RXw8ATT
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Blake noticed Weiss make an inconspicuous glance to be sure Ruby was still in line of sight. Ruby was obviously providing more than love. Weiss's shoulders had stiffened up when she'd walked away, and with that look they had again relaxed. Ruby was also Weiss's security against her depression and perhaps herself. Blake tucked that piece of information away.165Please respect copyright.PENANAUQ72xI30UP
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"So, what do you need to talk about?" her voice sounded as happy as that smile had indicated. It was eerie. What did Ruby do to her?copyright protection161PENANAgriqpgFsGc

Remembering the last time she approached the subject, Blake was nervous regardless of how happy Weiss appeared. Hesitantly she asked "Remember when I told you I found a piece of the White Fang?" Blake very closely watched her friend's expression, trying to ready herself for anything.copyright protection161PENANABX9Ix2WTPA

"Yeeeees," her friend said slowly as if she was the one ready for the attack. This actually put Blake at ease.copyright protection161PENANArD4EdZcyku

With a lot less fear of a possible backlash she told Weiss "I could still use your help, if you are willing."copyright protection161PENANAlAWE1lVHOB

Weiss let out a breath that Blake hadn't known her friend was holding. "I would be happy to," she said with obvious relief. "Thank you." Blake simply nodded knowing exactly what Weiss was thanking her for. The previous argument was truly forgiven and forgotten. "But how can I be of use? I'm not able to do much anymore." Ah yes, the self-doubt. Hopefully this will help with that.165Please respect copyright.PENANACtdKl2fEIj
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"I have an idea, but I'm not sure how to go about it. I want to bring the pieces of White Fang back together under a new name, and a new method, to bring about our equality."copyright protection161PENANAFtyK7MJkk3

Weiss nodded. She had straightened her back slightly as she faced a problem other than herself, and one she was comfortable helping with. "Consolidation with a total rebranding, complete with new mission statement. That could work, so long as no one realizes the connection between the new and the old."copyright protection161PENANAPGEMkF7gmW

"It was Jaune's idea." Blake admitted.copyright protection161PENANASfmrivzoAB

"He is smarter than I used to give him credit."copyright protection161PENANAjf4S0cEJxZ

Blake was curious how deeply Weiss's emotional wounds went. "Smarter than you?"165Please respect copyright.PENANAE9IH0Fd9g6
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"Possibly in some areas," she said with real humility.copyright protection161PENANAd8JzA24arE

Well, that was good to hear. At least she was able to recognize her skills and knowledge weren't useless, though that was not the overconfident answer that she would have received before her trial had begun. Maybe that would be a positive turn for her friend. That overconfidence often got her into trouble.copyright protection161PENANALLUQDU2iEz

"Right," Blake said, and then returned to their conversation. "To pull those pieces together I will need a very convincing 'mission statement.' Protests didn't work, and of terrorism isn't an option."165Please respect copyright.PENANA2aX9duRgvL
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Weiss nodded, "I can see you have an idea."copyright protection161PENANAvzof8Yhd9J

"More of a concept really. Could we put financial pressure on businesses that are discriminating against us, and encourage them to have fair policies?"copyright protection161PENANASVuNL7HNpm

"There are ways, I think. It'd be easier if we had financial backing," Weiss started, winding her way into the subject. "Also until you manage to get the White Fang, or whatever you're going to call them, together you aren't going to have enough manpower. There is also the possible backlash from large companies like the Schnee Dust Company." Weiss paused for a second after mentioning her father's company, but after a deep breath she continued. "If they try they could cause bad publicity which would undercut your cause."copyright protection161PENANAnHOjEJoDLL

Weiss went on with further ideas and possible complications until Blake held up a hand to stall her friend. "Okay, you've already brought up several points I hadn't thought of, and I'm sure you can come up with more. So the question is where do we start?"copyright protection161PENANASgkgvtfNGo

Again that smile, and this time with real humor. "We're going to start with a makeover."copyright protection161PENANAwyk0m583Sy

Blake's jaw dropped. "A what?"165Please respect copyright.PENANA57fjRAm7f4
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"A makeover," her friend repeated, looking entirely pleased with herself. "You aren't going to inspire anyone looking like a Huntress, except for people who want to fight. That isn't the crowd you want."copyright protection161PENANAJp04GvxVid

"But..." Blake wasn't sure what she was going to say after that, and Weiss didn't give her a chance.copyright protection161PENANAkOMEP8JXcC

"No buts. You asked for my help, so that's where we're going to start." Weiss's voice was now taking on a more commanding tone.copyright protection161PENANAvDTKSsFRrc

Blake was a bit too distracted to appreciate it. "You want me to look like a business woman?" She tried to picture herself in a business suit, and just couldn't. It wasn't her.165Please respect copyright.PENANAqTe8AeOOn5
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With a practiced ease, Weiss said "no, business types will likely make people nervous. You're trying to get companies to end their abuse. You don't want to look like one of them. I want professional, but relaxed."copyright protection161PENANA0yeNd3WX09

Blake's mental image refocused with her now wearing a button up shirt, opened at the neck, and a pair of slacks. It was almost worse than the first image. "I understand what you're saying, and I'll do it because it will help. I won't like it though."copyright protection161PENANAAwMtgFWWwo

"Oh, I think I can fix that too," Weiss said with the confidence Blake had hoped to inspire in her friend, and was now inclined to regret.copyright protection161PENANA97zLIP4PDj

"When?" she asked, sounding beaten, because she was.copyright protection161PENANAfEStr5xo2y

"Let's do it Saturday. The sooner we start the faster we'll finish."copyright protection161PENANAxD4k6lZ2hv

There was one other subject to talk about, the one that Blake had been the most distracted by. "What about Ruby? I don't want to monopolize your time."copyright protection161PENANAqqD0bmPgct

"I'll talk to her about it. She might come, but if not we can make the trips short." There was stress behind the words. If Ruby said no Blake would talk to her. If she couldn't get Ruby to change her mind she would find an excuse to cancel for this weekend. Her plan may take years to complete, a week wouldn't change much in the scheme of things.copyright protection161PENANAzr7rVyxsXA

A bell sounded indicating that next classes were going to begin in fifteen minutes. The short talk she had planned went a lot longer than she intended. "We can talk details later," Blake said. "Go save your girlfriend from those wolves we call friends."copyright protection161PENANA0ud4PjpOlH

Weiss nodded and turned around, walking to the group. Blake noticed a little more of the swagger in Weiss's steps that had been missing before. It wasn't all back, but it was a good start. Reminding her that she had more to offer than a bank account, or fighting, was already providing dividends.copyright protection161PENANAkM7XMjjCzv


Blake was fidgety on the ride into town. She had always dressed nicely she thought, and had grown accustomed to what she thought of as her style. The prospect of change was unnerving, as most change was. She might even go so far as to say it was frightening. It was funny, she'd faced down entire packs of Beowulfs by herself without batting an eye yet a new shirt was making her break out in a sweat. It'd be funny to anyone who wasn't her at that moment anyways.copyright protection161PENANA59XcBSL9lJ

"I can never get bored of this view!" Ruby exclaimed, looking out the window of their transport. Everything was right in the world for her, and Yang was correct: she was more excitable than she had been which was frightening considering what her old level was. "Weiss, come look. I can see the merchant district! That's where we're going to shop, right?"copyright protection161PENANAJleXq3gQRC

Weiss let out a big sigh, and pinched the bridge of her nose as if she had hit her last nerve. She had maintained the mood that had so surprised Blake, but her old mannerisms were back in force. "Yes. Are you going to be like this all day? Some of us are taking this seriously."165Please respect copyright.PENANAUpgRztmqJR
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Ruby didn't deflate or look the least bit dejected, but she did slow down. "I am too Weiss. Blake needs the best from us right now, but enjoying the view isn't going to slow the bus down any, so why not enjoy it for the moment?"copyright protection161PENANAZTHW6jPSsa

"Oh, alright. Just stop bouncing off the walls for a minute and I'll try to enjoy the sights. Fair?" Ruby nodded, and reached out a hand to lead the way, then hugging her girlfriend from behind with that smile she didn't seem to be able to get rid of.copyright protection161PENANABcwP9XSqOJ

They really are good for each other, Blake thought. They are extremes in so many ways which gives them balance, yet they have enough in common that they can relate to each other. A small smile crossed the corner of her lips, enjoying the sight.copyright protection161PENANA3lVs05EYzs

The two lovers stayed that way the rest of the trip, Weiss actually leaning into the embrace after a few minutes, sharing a moment of bliss. Blake wished she could have a similar feeling about then rather than the dread of what was to come.copyright protection161PENANAwylevsxlk0

Looking a lot more relaxed than Blake was, Weiss lead her to the trade district with Ruby in tow. The first store they hit had an assortment of items, none of them where remotely near what Blake would have looked at. In fact she had seen this store before, from the windows, and continued walking without a second thought.copyright protection161PENANAwVc2Kl0CMO

"I thought you said no business suits."165Please respect copyright.PENANAcPZr9Q1vYg
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"No, I said it would be relaxed but professional. Trust me, I've been thinking on this and I'm sure you will like what I came up with. Have a seat, and let me find a couple of items."165Please respect copyright.PENANAApaOyL2nzq
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Blake did exactly that feeling completely out of her depth. It wasn't that she was against dressing up; she just wasn't sure about this kind of dress. She did trust her friend and she hoped Weiss was right but this shop was full of button up shirts, slacks, and ties. This was not a place she belonged.165Please respect copyright.PENANAsuQImpcIQW
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Fifteen grueling minutes later Weiss returned with a few sets of pants and shirts, each in multiple sizes. Blake looked at them skeptically. "Try these on and find the ones that fit the best. I picked out these because they won't restrict your movement at all. Look here, here, and here. There are extra panels to allow for high kicks, rolls, and just about any other maneuver you can think of."165Please respect copyright.PENANAA2MztVquqo
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Blake watched Weiss point out the spots and had to admit that she was right. She'd be able to fight in these. They wouldn't provide any kind of protection if she was hit, but neither did her current clothes. That's what Aura was for, and her catlike reflexes. Still, it didn't look like 'her.'165Please respect copyright.PENANAL0NVOmGRJf
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Without a word Blake grabbed the clothes and went to the changing rooms. She discovered Weiss was a good judge of sizes quickly. She had picked three sizes of each item, and every time it was the middle size that fit the best. There was a small thrill putting the shirts on she had to admit. They were one-hundred percent silk and the feel of it on her skin made her usual clothes feel like burlap. Looking even more dower than she usually did, she stepped out and waited for the laughter. Ruby at the least would find this suit funny.165Please respect copyright.PENANAicK8U6y7Oo
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Weiss simply nodded. "Not perfect, but it is what I'm going for." As she had predicted Ruby put her hand over her mouth to try not laughing and failed. "Now put your coat on." That surprised Blake. Her leather trench wasn't anything like a suit. It was leather, for starters. It had the button straps on the shoulders for holding gloves, and matching straps around the wrists.copyright protection161PENANAlgvZb1VhVO

Blake nodded with approval. "It's not the clothes that make a look, it's the accessories. One last item to add to give you an idea of what I'm going for; at least from what they have in this store." Weiss threw something at her and Blake caught it reflexively.copyright protection161PENANAxM5t98mxnH

Blake looked at the piece of fabric blankly. A tie? Was Weiss insane? "No, you've reached my limit. If I wanted a noose I'd make it myself."copyright protection161PENANAjawXq1xTy3

"It isn't what I want, but they don't have clip-on ties here."copyright protection161PENANAcTkHTvJOME

"Clip-on?" she knew what they were, but her brain was still trying to catch up with the concept. Guys wore ties, not girls.copyright protection161PENANACjqINzR96e

"They look like the real thing," Weiss informed her, unaware of what had just gone through Blake's head. "but it's only held on by a single clip. Someone pulls on it and it'll instantly come off."copyright protection161PENANAQqpnnPoVIX

It was easier to just let the misunderstanding go. "I see. If they're so good, why don't they have them here?"copyright protection161PENANAYURiCKOmzA

"Most people think of them as cheating," Weiss shrugged with a look that told Blake she didn't think much of those people. "or something only a lower class person would use. In other words it's too cheap for their standards."copyright protection161PENANA0cTqVHZMQ6

"Then why do you want me to even try it?" And why do you want me to dress like a guy? she asked mentally.copyright protection161PENANA1Hxq4UgtQZ

"It's because I want you to see the full effect that I'm going for. It'll go back to the rack after."copyright protection161PENANArOUi7x3VTC

Blake looked at Ruby questioningly, hoping for her opinion. Preferably she was hoping for a reason to get out of this. She was left with only disappointment. "Don't ask me. This is her home turf, and she knows what she's doing."copyright protection161PENANAwTOqkJ7kvX

Trying to decide if Ruby really meant what she was saying, or if she was just being biased, Blake shrugged her shoulders. "I'll trust you and get what you have so far. Put the noose away." Blake handed the tie back to Weiss with obvious disgust. "Go check out while I put some real clothes on."copyright protection161PENANAqxFYXJSedJ

Ruby started snickering at that, and then answered her scroll as it chimed, Yang's face on its display. "Yes? I think so, we're just shopping. Why? But... That important?" Blake was hearing Yang's voice on the other side (There are advantages to having four ears) and knew that she was laughing the entire time, and not saying a thing. What was Ruby up to? She had been obviously bored for the last half hour, but Blake didn't think she'd leave just because of that. "No, no. As long as I'm gone for a short time it'll be ok." A sour look hit Ruby's face though Blake knew it was an act. When had Ruby become such a good actress? "I assume you got that?" she said to Weiss.copyright protection161PENANAdEx7WFFZBy

Weiss looked ready to fall apart, but she nodded. Ruby rushed up to her lover and held her, trying to console her. "I'll be as quick as possible," she said, giving her a passionate kiss. "I'm sorry, and I love you." That one Blake believed, and believing in her leader she didn't say a thing to Weiss. She was, however, going to get some answers out of Ruby tonight.copyright protection161PENANAC8rqyLaF5G

With a wave Ruby was gone. A few minutes later her and Weiss were ready to leave, Blake's clothes in hand, and moved on to their next destination. Weiss certainly knew the trade district well.copyright protection161PENANADwdiub2npf

Blake reflexively looked at the window and found what she had hoped wasn't there. "Wait."copyright protection161PENANA6DTELQkqQW

Weiss stopped and looked back at her friend. "It's already too late to change your mind. We have the expensive items now, so the least you can do is get the couple of items left."copyright protection161PENANAYt4qTCc4ih

"It isn't that. It's that," Blake said, pointing at a picture of a dog's head with a 'don't' symbol over it.copyright protection161PENANALWOYfiahGA

"So they don't allow pets."165Please respect copyright.PENANA3pqPYTKoob
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"No, that symbol means they won't serve faunus," Blake advised, feeling a residual feeling of anger and fear from her youth. "It isn't worth going in. Let's just go to the next shop."copyright protection161PENANAHpBMPvo1AH

Weiss looked at the sign closer in shock. "But that's ridiculous!" In hind sight she had to admit she'd seen the signs before, but had assumed they were exactly what she'd told Blake: No pets. It wasn't like she had any faunus friends before Beacon. Wasn't that the final straw that had left her without a family? An insult towards Blake, insinuating that she wasn't worthy to be in their company? "What kind of shopkeeper would turn down a paying customer? Getting paid for their merchandise is what they do!"165Please respect copyright.PENANAM9bA50WMRG
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Blake shook her head sadly. "Not all. Some let their prejudices be greater than their greed."165Please respect copyright.PENANA29SMiNSQUH
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"I don't believe it. I'll get him to do it. I may not be a Schnee anymore, but they won't know that. They can't afford to piss my family off."copyright protection161PENANAzP8aBYG0Zg

Weiss was swearing. That wasn't good. She was too proper, normally, to reduce herself to such things. "Don't..." it was already too late, as Weiss entered the shop. Not knowing what else to do Blake followed hoping she could get her friend out before she made too much of a scene.copyright protection161PENANAHjBlqVeRqp

"Of course we have a clip-on tie in that color." the merchant was saying.copyright protection161PENANAYu7SNge6Gl

"Good, get it for us so I can see how it looks on my friend."copyright protection161PENANAPfaXqMV6MV

It was only a couple seconds, but feelings too tangled too identify rose up in Blake. She wanted to flee, seeing the disgust on his face. She hadn't tried going into a shop that was run by a bigot since she was a child and she'd learned then what hate looked like. Those childhood fears rooted her to the ground. I'm not that child anymore. I'm a Huntress. This guy can't hurt me. He is nothing. she told herself, but that child couldn't be calmed.copyright protection161PENANAnueZQFU5xk

"We don't serve animals. Get her out of here before she makes a mess on the floor." Those eyes; She knew he would hurt her if he was given the chance. One foot moved backwards as if she was pushed.copyright protection161PENANAuvPBoDSCJy

"Her name is Blake, and she is my friend. Don't insult her again," Weiss said levelly, though her anger was clear.copyright protection161PENANAXyO8wfVrmH

"How nice, you've named your pet," he was looking at Weiss with pity now, as if she was dense. "You're one of the idiots who try to let them think. You know it's a useless act. Either you're disappointed, or they bite the hand that feeds them like the White Fang did."copyright protection161PENANAnJcCI2hD8O

From Weiss's posture Blake knew she was reaching her limit and soon her temper would be at its boiling point. Finding her voice Blake said "let's go Weiss. He isn't worth it."copyright protection161PENANAYCkNeIr6la

"Control your bitch's ungrateful tongue, and get out of my shop faunus lover."copyright protection161PENANAFjJurfJmH5

The shopkeeper obviously did not know who or what he was talking to. He was assuming that Weiss was just a girl, and a small one at that, so his bulk would be enough to not only get them to cower, but to hurt them. It was a mistake he regretted immediately as Weiss's temper broke free. In one smooth motion her fist went up, connecting with his chin. His head bounced backwards and he was unconscious as he fell to the ground like so much dead weight.copyright protection161PENANA44PhGykYbs

"Weiss, did you..?"copyright protection161PENANAN958XkRoqc

"He'll live, but he's going to have a headache when he wakes up, which is not enough in my book but any more and the law could be called." She was still seething. Blake on the other hand was used to it. It was depressing, but it was what it was. Leaving the shop Blake shook off the feelings and the memories that had caused them.copyright protection161PENANAz6viBXykjf

"You know, he could call the law already. He didn't do anything wrong. He has the legal right to not provide service if he doesn't want to. You were the one who became aggressive."copyright protection161PENANAqokgF1OZ0Z

"But that's wrong!" she yelled in outragecopyright protection161PENANAsN9xW6RNvi

Blake felt the need to make a point. "Feel that anger? Imagine how much worse it would feel if he was talking about you like that. Imagine you grew up with it. Imagine if you'd seen friends, family, and lovers beaten for no other reason than you had horns. Think about what it would be like if you were the one getting beaten. Can you understand now why the White Fang became what it did?" She said it calmly, hiding her anger as much as possible, but it burned in her stomach. This is what her friends didn't understand. Couldn't understand, and why the need for equality burned so brightly within her.copyright protection161PENANAZ5ouoZrWkL

"I didn't know..," Weiss said, her anger draining out of her quickly along with most of her energy. "I just thought it was a little snub now and then, maybe a bit of bullying."copyright protection161PENANAcLax1PyPPz

"In a way it is," Blake lied for her friend's benefit. If anything the shop keeper had been mild when compared to some. She had seen lynchings for less than this. "Let's go, I'm sure we can find a shop that will have what you're looking for that isn't filled with hate."copyright protection161PENANAOhmXPi4G6z

Weiss nodded, and headed to the next shop. "It's gotten worse, actually," Blake said, warmed up to the subject. "Because of what the White Fang did many of those who weren't bigoted became scared of us. They lash out for different reasons but the result is the same."copyright protection161PENANAY5EnA2n1ZI

Her teammate nodded her understanding. "This is going to be a lot harder than I thought it would be." She looked at Blake, "but we will do it. We have to." Blake was touched. While Weiss had accepted that not all faunus were scum long ago, she hadn't shown the need to help, not like this.copyright protection161PENANANbtXJvNikD

"Thank you."copyright protection161PENANAR9Ve7KxbrD

Two hours and several shops later, and twice as many shops that wouldn't serve faunus, Weiss was satisfied with the clothes she'd gotten Blake. Each shop with that sign seemed to harden Weiss's resolve a little more. The fun had been taken out of their shopping, so it was a much more mechanical process. Blake didn't protest anything Weiss picked out, and Weiss picked out the minimal items needed to complete one outfit.copyright protection161PENANALqIpNisbks

Ruby had shown up at some point. She tried to bring the joy back, and failed. Weiss told her what had happened, and with understanding even Ruby fell silent. The view on the trip back went unobserved, though the two lovers embraced each other for mutual support.copyright protection161PENANAU7Eo5nTTFe

This wasn't the world as it should be, but it was the world they lived in. Beacon was a safe harbor. Ozpin was very careful on who was admitted to his Academy, so there at least it was reduced to minor teasing. Blake knew the change of environment to something familiar and safe would do much to improve everyone's mood.copyright protection161PENANAwwnrKuchFD

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