"I need a drink." Roman slumped out of the bullhead as we landed.
"Juniors?" I asked.
"Yup." He popped. "Need to give the big guy a heads up on what happened."
"Junior's going to be pissed." Melanie added. "He expected an immediate return."
"Yeah, well, he knew the risks." Roman seemed uncaring. "Besides, it's not like he isn't getting ahead here, it just won't be immediate."
"Won't the police stop us?" I mean, we could easily sneak there, but we were just casually walking down the street at this point.
"Pfft, like the Kingdoms are that cooperative. It'll take at least several days before Vale even considers warrants." Roman bit down on his cigar. "And I doubt any of them with a brain will come knocking with you around, kid."
"That's…." I paused considering what he said. "That's fair, I suppose."
Roman snorted. "Yeah, just expect the Atlas military if they really want your ass." He shook his head, clearly fatigued after everything that happened. "Hey, it's your adoring fans." He chuckled as crowds of people began to point at us, scrolls out recording.
I, of course, waved at them happily. "Do you guys not care that you're basically being recorded?"
"It's good for my persona." Roman said flippantly.
And that was also fair.
"Me and Mel work for Junior." Miltia added. "There's a reason he's never overtly touched by the government."
"Copious amounts of blackmail?" I asked. He was a information broker, along with his other illicit activities.
"Huh, neat." I thought for a moment. "Think people would pay for autographs?"
"Kid." Roman turned to me with a flat expression. "That is a genius idea." A smile grew on his face. "I'll need to capitalize on this before I get a new warrant."
"Neo, you good?" I asked the shorter woman, only taking a few glances at how those pants hugged her butt.
She gave a small smile, seemingly unconcerned.
"Please, Neo thrives on the attention." Roman laughed as we approached the club. It wasn't very far away, conveniently close to where the Bullheads parked. He swaggered in, pushing the doors open. "Honey, I'm home." He declared to a club full of people.
Gone was the whole 'dance' theme he had going on before. No, this was set up to watch the fights from earlier, lots of seating, lots of drinks.
It only took a moment before people started clapping and cheering.
"Thank you, thank you." Roman took his hat off and bowed. "You're all too kind, really."
"What's up with the standing ovation?" I asked.
"You got any idea how many people the spider bitch ran out of Mistral or killed friends and family of? Not to mention – fuck the governments. Oh, and a healthy dose of fuck the tournament commission as well. Basically hit the triple with our little adventure."
"The people of the hour." Junior opened his arms, welcoming us back and gesturing to the seats at the bar. The crowd just hollering and whooping even more.
I happily took my seat, a drink already waiting infront of me. "This is not how I expected our return to be like." I down half my glass in one go.
"At the moment, you're not wanted men in Vale." Junior just shrugged, turning back to the huge crowd. "Ladies and Gentleman, we're closing. So, get the hell out."
Many booed and threw jeers at Junior, but they didn't really have any venom behind them. He was weirdly charismatic.
"Gonna debrief now?" I mused sipping my drink.
"You think this is a cop drama or something?" Junior grunted.
"Well, kid isn't wrong." Roman grinned. "So, how's everything after we made our escape?"
Junior took his glasses off, rubbing his eyes. "Shit, Roman. I can't cover you on this one, you're gonna get A LOT of heat on your for this shit."
"I figured." Roman sighed. "How bad is the Kid in it?" He jerked his thumb towards me.
"Up shit creek, the concept of a paddle doesn't even exist for him anymore."
"Ouch." I winced. "Didn't know you cared, Roman."
"Yeah, well, I need to make sure my people don't get caught and snitch on me."
"Sureeeeee." I smiled.
He chose to ignore me. "But what's the latest news."
"Well, you lot are blasted all over the news, kid and you taking the spotlight." He took out his scroll, pressing it a few times and tossed it on the counter.
"Initial estimates are roughly 140,000 Lien in damages –"
"27 Dead – "
"—Worried about an unchecked individual with the ability to kill a Grimm of such caliber"
The Clips changed from time to time as a bunch of people all talked about our escapades.
"Hmm, I wonder if Vacuo is nice this time of the year?" I asked.
"If you like sand, sand, and more sand." Miltia rolled her eyes.
"There's that nice resort there, though." Melanie added helpfully.
"Oh?" I was actually surprised by that.
Neo stood up and excitedly waved her arms.
"Oh yeah, shorty took a vacation there a few months ago, wouldn't stop bragging about it." Miltia added, a tired look on her face.
"We're getting off topic, lets focus on the important stuff." Junior cut off that sidetrack. "Now….what's this I hear about Roman downing a bullhead with….a Dildo?" He raised an eyebrow.
"Pfffft" I held my hands up to my mouth, catching myself from spitting my drink everywhere.
"Oh fuck me!" Roman let his forehead hit the counter.
Melanie and Miltia broke into giggles, Neo practically falling out of her seat, laughing silently.
Even Junior began to cackle at Roman's misfortune.
"First off, it was the kid." He accused, pointing his finger at me.
"That's not what the internet says." I retorted, having brought my own scroll out and started searching up info. "Congratulations, Roman. You're a meme."
"I hate you so much right now."
"Love you too, Dad." I chuckled.
I turned to Neo. "Mom, dad's being mean to me."
Neo lightly pat my shoulder.
"Can we talk about the important stuff now?" Roman tried to change the subject.
"Fine." We did need to figure out what happened.
"Alright, if you all are done fooling around." Junior put on a serious face. "Honestly, this was a shit show. After we settle everything, I don't want to see you guys for several months." He swept his gaze at me, Neo, and Roman. "I'm already having to call on several favors to keep the Twins out of the news."
"That's fair. I'll disappear for a bit once we settle everything." I nodded.
"Yeah, I'll probably hit up one of my safe houses and take some 'me' time." Roman sighed. "Neo, you good?" Neo just nodded gesturing to him. "I forgot you had that house." He just hummed.
I assume Neo was going to crash at her own little safe place.
"Well, if you guys got that figured out." Junior set his hands on the counter. "Seriously though, people are asking a LOT of questions here. It's obvious even to the uneducated masses that more was going on than what's being said. The government isn't going to start firing missiles in the middle of the city over a petty thief."
"Oh shit, I forgot about that. How were people not rioting after that?"
"Believe me, people are very much upset." He refilled my drink without a comment. "That kind of show of force was very unusual, and people noticed. Not to mention what the kid did to that Grimm." He gave me a look, as if trying to see through me.
"Didn't you unlock your Aura, like a week ago?" Melanie commented, eyes drilling into me, actually everyone was giving me looks.
"I can't help that I'm so talented. Truly it's the only thing that can rival my handsomeness."
"Oh brothers." Melanie rolled her eyes, only making me smirk.
I think they realized I wasn't going to answer questions right now, so they moved on. "Yeah, that's going viral at the moment. Isn't doing you any good, kid. People are kind of scared that a criminal is capable of bring that kind of force to bare." He sighed. "Well, they're also saying how you didn't use it on the authorities and actually saved them, so it's about split with regards to calling for your head."
"Eh, don't really care at this point." I shrugged. "What happened to the tournament after I left?"
"Well, after you destroyed all my odds with your second fight, it went about as expected. They kind of forced everything to continue, Nikos winning the finals, but she refused to accept the reward, saying she hadn't beaten her final opponent yet."
Oh, Pyrrha, you cinnamon roll.
"Other than that, you can probably guess the chaos going on right now after all that crap." He took a deep breath. "Now –" he swept his gaze and landed on Roman. "What the fuck happened."
"Yeah, I knew this was coming." Roman sighed again, nursing his drink. "We raided her stashes like planned, but we didn't realize she had a VERY hot item hidden in there with all the loot."
"How hot, Roman?"
"Atlas's next generation of Mech and infantry weaponry." Roman answered nonchalantly. "I only glanced at some of the bitch's notes, but stuff looked legit."
"Brothers fucking damn it!" Junior Shouted, turning away and clenching his fists. "Fuck! No wonder they got so damn pissed. If Atlas found out….."
"Yup, whole shitshow that would be." Roman replied. "But, good news is that I managed to stash the other loot before making it out with this." He took a small chip out of his pocket and placed it on the counter. I assumed it was the same as a USB drive or something.
"Is that…" He said quietly.
"Yup, a bunch of super classified Atlas military secrets" Roman nodded. "Think Atlas would be interested in reacquiring this?"
"Roman." Junior stared at him. "You are one crazy son of a bitch. Yeah, we can probably do something with this….worse case Vale may want to buy it."
"Atlas won't show up with their military?" I asked.
"Yeah, no. The Vale Council would throw a fit if Ironwood tried to pull a stunt like that. Relations are already a bit rocky after some issues in the past few years." Junior explained. "Good news, we'll probably be making a lot of Lien. Bad news, it's going to take a while to move something this hot."
"Well, you guys work out the details. I need to make a call." I thought about Pyrrha and felt a small pit in my stomach.
I sought some privacy in the Forever Fall Forest as I took out my Scroll, pressed a familiar number. It rang a few times before a redhead appeared on the screen. "Hey there, Red."
"Wilhelm!?" Pyrrha looked at me in shock. "I thought...I wouldn't hear from you again."
"You have my number, you could have called."
"….I didn't think you would want to talk to me." She said quietly and I couldn't help but sigh at what I probably put her through.
"We're friends, why wouldn't I?"
"Even after what happened?"
"Red, my woman literally kicked my ass every day for years for training." I deadpanned. "That's practically a greeting for me." I sighed again. "How you holding up, I know I left a mess behind."
"That's an understatement." She frowned, a little bit of venom in her words. "We were threatened to continue the tournament."
I paused for a moment, remembering what Junior said. "Threatened? Do I need to go have a chat with someone?"
"My manager is already talking to my lawyers."
"I guess I'll keep my hands out of it then." I would let it go this time.
"Also…..I talked to one of the Teachers from Beacon….I accepted a scholarship."
"Oh? I hear Beacon is a good school, but won't you get some flak for going to a school outside the Kingdom?" I could only imagine with her popularity back home that they were all expecting her to go to Haven.
"Maybe, I don't know." She mumbled. "My manager said something similar but….you were from Vale so I wanted to go there."
"I'm going to stop you." She said with a certain amount of confidence in her voice that surprised me.
"Stop me?" I questioned.
"I'll make you stop being a criminal." She declared.
I couldn't help but smile at her words, The way she said them was so genuine. "Do you think you can?" I wanted to poke her a little bit.
She furrowed her brow. "I know you're strong."
"Pyrrha, that wasn't anywhere close to my full strength." I admitted. I wanted to see what her resolve looked like.
She was quiet for a moment. "A lot of people are trying to speculate your semblance, but no one can agree on anything." She looked at me, as if wanting an answer.
"Semblance, huh?" I eyed her. "Tell you mine if you tell me –"
"Polarity." She interrupted me.
I blinked at her. "I was kidding." I face palmed. But that was interesting and I had questions regarding the applications.
"Oh…" She looked down. "That's fine, just – "
I sighed, opening up a portal right behind her. "Space Control." I spoke, almost making her jump in fright.
"Wilhelm!?" She turned around, looking at me in utter shock.
"Hey, Red," I greeted as I stepped over, the scene revealed was an empty park minus us two.
"Space Control?" She muttered, connecting several dots. "That's...scary to think about." She looked up at me. "Is it a good idea for you to be here…?"
"Are you going to arrest me, miss huntress?"
She blushed slightly. "I'm not technically a huntress yet…..only becoming a Huntress in training, legally, when I start my schooling at Beacon."
I couldn't help but smile again at her nervousness. "I never did apologize for what happened." I moved towards a nearby bench, sitting down. She followed me, sitting a little close but I still saw her hesitance.
"For the damage?"
"Oh, I don't really care about that." I admitted. Insurance would most likely cover everything, though I can look into that to clear my conscious incase someone got screwed over due to my flippancy.
"Well, I am a master criminal." I smirked as she just huffed in annoyance. "I was talking about how we left things." I looked up at the sky, the moon was surprisingly beautiful once I got used to it being shattered like that. "I was a lot like you not too long ago."
"Like me?" She tilt her head, not understanding.
"I told you I was alone for most of my childhood, I mean that literally. I had no friends, no one to confide in, alone." I explained as she looked like she wanted to crawl under a rock at my statement. I understood it, the embarrassment, the depressing thoughts she must have about herself. I knew them all too well. "I don't know how I would have felt if I thought my first friend abandoned me." Our situations weren't a perfect mirror, but it was enough that I can sympathize quite heavily with her.
"We're really friends?" Pyrrha asked quietly.
"Of course." I said genuinely, as she relaxed a bit and I saw a bit of smile hiding behind her neutral expression. "Want a hug?"
"A hug." I reiterated. "I'm gonna hug you." She made a little sound as I wrapped my arms around her, but she didn't seem to dislike it either as she reciprocated all the same.
"I'm still going to stop you." She whispered.
"Well, then you need to get stronger, huh?" We finally parted, a small blush on her face. "Try not to focus on only that though. You have a chance to make some more friends." I didn't want to be the reason she couldn't have a fun school experience, gods know I missed my chance.
"That's….another reason I wanted to go to Beacon." She admitted. "I thought it would allow me to escape the 'fame'. I'm tired of everyone just propping me up like some kind of idol."
"Hmm, probably, but don't' expect it all to just dissipate into the air." It was a good idea. "You can't expect people to willingly ignore your pedestal, if you won't come down to meet them halfway."
"I know...." She muttered. "I've never been good with people though." She looked embarrassed by the admittance. "I took acting classes when I was younger to help me fake it infront of the cameras."
"Okay, the thought to of you trying to act in a setting like that is a little funny." I would pay money to see her in a play or something. "Actually, I was a part of the theatre club in my school.
"Theatre? They have clubs for that?" She looked at me, and I guess it was a foreign concept to her, in a world with monsters like this.
"It was more common where I'm from." I waived it off as I sighed again. "I'm going to have to disappear for awhile, Red."
"Disappear….because of what happened?"
"Yeah, Vale is probably going to put out a warrant for my arrest. Figured I'd get a head start and hit the road before then."
"Will I still be able to talk to you?"
"Where I'm going, it'll be hard. But I'll make sure to check in when I can."
"Oh….I see." She looked a little depressed at that. "How long do you think you have to hide?"
"Few months, probably. I think I should be able to pop back up in public by the time Beacon's semester starts."
"Really!?" She lit up at me words.
"I promise." I said as I resolved myself to show up even if my face was still being blasted everywhere. I saw so much of the old me in her, I couldn't not be there when she needed moral support.
But I was running down the clock on my stay here. I wanted to finish up a few more things before I departed.
Well, we're wrapping up RWBY for now, I just wrote the chapter where MC left over on pat reon. Pyrrha continues to be a cinnamon roll, with a few issues solved between them.
Anyways, if you want to read 5 chapters ahead or support me, visit my pat.reon.com/astoryforone.