Follow the Beacon
Qrow—Kill Me Yourself
[Wait where did the fluff go]
“I’m coming to Vale with you.”
Qrow paused, glancing up from the bottom of his closet and forgetting the search for his wallet for a moment. “Why?”
“You shouldn’t go alone.”
“I’ll be fine,” he muttered, shoving it in his pocket before straightening up and closing the door.
“She’s right,” Summer said quickly. “And it’s not like she’s going to study anyway.”
He scowled at his sister. Last thing he needed was to give her a chance to drag him off to Anima again—he hadn’t even been alone with her in a week.
“You can decide where we go,” Raven murmured. “I just want to get out of the castle for a while.”
“Fine,” he muttered, brushing past her and out of the room. Just his luck. Two thousand miles from home and they were still getting ordered out on missions together.
Neither of them spoke again until they were safely lost in the crowd of Vale’s streets, easily ignored by the sea of people around them.
“She’s just trying to make you stronger.”
“I don’t want to talk about her.”
“Qrow, she raised us!”
“I know you’ve been going to see her.” Most nights, just before dawn—he’d seen her leave a couple of times. Now that Bones was dead there was only one other person on Remnant that she could portal to.
“She’s concerned about the mission. We’ve attracted a lot more attention than we planned, and your grades are too high. It’ll attract even more.”
Qrow tensed. He needed those grades—needed to earn Valian citizenship. Nowhere in Anima would be safe once Vanta figured out he’d betrayed the tribe and Vacuo probably wouldn’t be much better. “And how exactly does Vanta know what my grades are?”
“Is this some kind of game to you?” Raven snapped, seizing his arm. “I’m not going to get caught and killed so that you can keep up your stupid rivalry with Dan. We need to blend in, stay beneath notice. I think Ozpin is onto us.”
His heart squeezed painfully. “What? Why?”
“His extra testing doesn’t seem strange to you?” she demanded. “He’s never had any of the others do the course in pairs, only STRQ.”
“He’s just trying to make a point about teamwork,” Qrow muttered, stepping forward again. “You’re reading too much into it.”
“Even if you’re right, it’s attention we don’t need. And he wouldn’t have singled us out if we didn’t have the best time.”
“I’m not sabotaging Summer and Tai.”
“You mean the Huntress and Huntsman whose job it is to destroy us?” Raven demanded, yanking him to a stop. “If you won’t listen to me, Vanta will want to talk to you again. I’m trying to protect you.”
He wrenched his arm from her grasp. “If you want to protect me, tell her it’s too dangerous to keep visiting. Tell her you’re worried about getting caught coming back and you can’t contact her anymore.”
“Fine. If you let your grades drop.”
Qrow gritted his teeth, rubbing his face as he hissed in frustration.
“You’re acting like a child!”
“You really think my grades are more dangerous than your visits? Which one do you really think is going to attract more attention?”
She fell silent, fuming, and he turned and toward their usual shop. Out of the crowd she’d have to stay quiet. After a moment she followed, staying just a step behind him. He watched her reflection in the store windows they passed, ready to fight her off this time if she tried to shove him through a portal, but he made it into the store without incident.
“…How do you do it?”
“Do what?” he snapped, locating Summer’s shampoo and snatching a bottle from the shelf.
“You’re not afraid of them.”
“Of course I…” he trailed off. That wasn’t true, was it—he’d felt safer with the two of them than with his own sister for the past week. “…They’re not looking for a reason to hurt us. Not like she does.”
“She’s trying to make you strong enough to survive.”
“She’s trying to keep us weaker than her,” he growled, stepping back toward the storefront. They quietly paid for their things and headed back out onto the street before he continued. “The first thing you said when I suggested coming to Beacon was that we could lead the tribe if we could fight like Huntsmen. Where’s Vanta in that little fantasy?”
“I thought that was the point of all this,” she snapped. “Without Bones, the tribe needs us. I thought you were trying to make up for killing him.”
It was like a fist to the gut, a physical sensation, and he nearly doubled over. Without a word he turned and walked in the opposite direction, not really caring where he was headed. Even Raven. Even Raven blamed him. …She was right to but it still hurt.
How long until she turned on him too?
She grabbed his shoulder, dragging him down a side street, and adrenaline surged through him like a spark of electric Dust. He sprang away, drawing his sword and watching for a portal under or behind him.
“Qrow?” she looked bewildered, lost. Satisfied she wouldn’t jump him again, he folded the blade down and clipped it under his cape.
“I’m not talking to Vanta and I’m not sabotaging my grades,” he snapped. “So you can stop telling her my business or you can kill me yourself.”
She shook her head, still disbelieving, but she didn’t try to attack or use her Semblance. With a grunt of frustration, she turned back toward the mouth of the alley. “I need a drink.”
I don’t want to steal anymore, he wanted to shout, but he was asking for too much already. He sank against the wall as she walked back out of the alley. She was right, he shouldn’t trust Summer and Tai. If—when—they found out…
The sound of Raven’s portal opening sent a second flash of panic through him, but the rend wasn’t even big enough for a dog to step through. A bottle fell from it instead, falling a couple inches and landing unbroken with a loud clink. Slowly, he released the hilt again.
Another minute passed, and she reappeared at the mouth of the alley with a faint smile. “See? Easy. I didn’t even have to get near the shelf."
Qrow just passed her the bottle and watched as she uncapped it. Gods, he wanted a drink. When she passed it back he couldn’t resist, just let the whiskey burn away all the worry and panic with the promise that he wouldn’t care about it in a few minutes.
"Slow down, we have to be able to get back into school,” Raven snapped, snatching it back. “Someone will ask questions if you can’t walk a straight line.”
[I want the fluff back]
Qrow: A banana a day keeps the doctor away.
Summer: You mean an apple a day?
Qrow: Whoever heard of a doctor slipping on an apple peel?
i definitely want to know more about their time at beacon, also what happened to summer and what she was like. there’s a theory salem has her imprisoned somewhere which i think would be interesting. in general thinking about them makes me pretty sad
Follow the Beacon
The school slowly broke down into organized insanity as exams approached. Students worked through meals or fell asleep in the library as teachers gave more and more coursework for review. Teachers encouraged team leaders to make sure their comrades were ready.
Raven was being exactly as cooperative as usual.
“No.” She almost growled, pulling the blanket over her head. “It’s a stupid assignment. We already learned that.”
“Which is why it’s called review,” Summer argued. “Come on. Our team could be top of our year! Just look over your notes again—”
“Go to sleep.”
She raised an eyebrow. “It’s only eight.”
A badly-suppressed noise wafted past her ear, and she turned to scowl at Tai and Qrow. “What are you two snickering at?”
“Oh, nothing.” Tai buried his face in his textbook. “What’s a Goliath?”
Qrow didn’t bother to look up. “Elephant Grimm.”
“Oh, charming.” He flipped to the index with a scowl. “Come on, Summer, let’s just head to the library without her.”
She scowled at the simmering lump of blankets. “Nope. We’re going to study right here .” The quilt growled, a low rumble with enough snarl to make her hair stand on end. Raven could make a Beowolf jealous, in the right mood.
“Any chance they’re smaller than the real thing?”
“…Common in midwestern Sanus. Why haven’t I heard of them?”
“Because they’re smart enough to stay away from Vale,” Qrow said, holding up his own textbook. A photograph took up most of the page, and the Grimm took up most of the photograph. The unlucky Huntress that had taken the picture had nearly been standing underneath it, and the edges were blurred like they’d been running. As always, the tender spots were identified with thin red arrows. The Goliath had one. Right under its chin, past the trunk. And the tusks. He set the book in his lap, continuing. “They’re not very common in Anima, but if you ever see one in the wild, run in the opposite direction.”
“No kidding,” she muttered, leaning forward to look again. “That thing could flatten a bullhead.”
“Size just makes them a bigger target. The real problem is they’re one of the weird ones.”
A shiver ran down Summer’s back at the dark in his tone. “Weird—”
“—ones?” Tai squeaked.
“They can trumpet like regular elephants, except that when you hear it you’re struck with paralyzing terror. Big cities use androids to fight ‘em, and smaller towns pay the big cities to take care of it if one shows up. If they can afford it.”
“…Have you ever seen one?” Summer asked.
A shadow fell over his face. “Once.”
Tai swallowed. “…What happened?”
Qrow didn’t meet either of their eyes. “People died.” With the aura of someone trying to change the subject, he continued on with forced nonchalance. “Its trumpet won’t affect you if you’re drunk enough, but it makes it kind of hard to fight. …Don’t put that on the test.”
“Wouldn’t dream of it,” Summer said, tracing an X over her heart as she copied it down in her notes. Raven pulled her blanket down just enough to give him a scathing glare before disappearing again.
He glanced down at his notes, searching for another way to change the subject. “Uh, the collapse of Vacuo’s government, was, um…”
“Well, if you ask some people the Dust companies were behind the whole thing,” Tai said, still flipping through pages of tracks to be identified. “But Lionheart’s probably looking for something more along the lines of 'Vacuo’s people trusted Shade more than their council and it fell apart.’”
Qrow frowned at his notes. “What actually happened?”
“Depends who you ask.”
“…But what actually happened?” he asked again, transferring his stare to Tai.
Tai just shrugged.
Qrow sighed, dumping the book back on his desk before getting up to rifle through his closet. “I’ve been going for hours, I’m gonna take a break. …Raven, where’s the shampoo?”
“I used the last of it this morning. Sorry.”
“Guess we’re going into Vale tomorrow.”
Summer leaned back on the hind legs of her chair, biting back a smile as she swiped her shampoo out of the closet. “Here, you can use mine tonight.” The cap opened with a soft click and she sniffed at it. “If it’s not too flowery.”
He took it and gave it a shake. “Are you sure? You’re almost out too.”
“Yeah, how about I give you some Lien and you can pick mine up for me to pay me back? Tai and I still have to study for our history midterm too, we were going to do the reviews this weekend.”
“Yeah, no problem. Thanks.”
“Ehh, let’s take a break too.” He tossed his notes onto the bed and stood up, stretching. “Maybe the dragon will fall asleep while we’re gone if we go on a walk.”
“Takes one to know one, Xiao Long .”
“Goodnight, Raven,” he said in an exaggerated whisper, gesturing for Summer to go through the door before him. Qrow pulled away, headed for the men’s room, and Tai turned in the opposite direction.
“Wait, you’re serious?” Summer asked as he started toward the stairs. “It’s freezing out there.”
“Use a little aura,” he said, the humor gone from his voice. “We need to talk.”
Tai shook his head, gesturing for her to follow, and as they stepped into the dark a shiver ran down her back that had nothing to do with the weather. A few flurries caught the light of a lamppost. First snow of the year, in the middle of exams. It figured.
“Qrow asked me not to talk about this,” Tai muttered, and Summer snapped back to the moment. He rubbed his eyes. “I just…”
“I walked in on him changing the other day…”
“Awkward. …More awkward since you’re telling me about it.”
Tai shook his head, still not making eye contact. “That’s not it. S… someone cut him.”
Summer gritted her teeth. “He’s hiding another injury? How low is his aura this ti—”
“No—not injuries. Scars. …I’ve never seen anything like it,” he mumbled, nausea stealing over his face. “Not in the first aid textbooks. None of the lines were parallel, they couldn’t have been made by teeth or claws.”
Summer’s stomach turned over.
“I can’t be sure but they looked recent.”
“How recent?” she demanded, surprising herself with her voice’s high pitch.
“I don’t know. I asked him about it but he won’t talk to me. All he said was that Raven didn’t do it, but she couldn’t know that I knew.” His hands tightened on a book Summer hadn’t noticed him holding as he held it up to glare at the cover. “…I’ve been reading about human trafficking.”
“You don’t think—”
“I don’t know.” Tai’s hand dropped back to his side. “All I know for sure is, wherever they came from, they can’t go back.”
She nodded, wishing her stomach would untie itself or at least stop moving.
“Just… try to stay close to him, y'know? He's… he’s terrified of me. He swears the skirt thing didn’t bother him, but I can’t think of any other reason for it—”
The knot in her gut tightened painfully. “Oh, fuck.”
* * *
“Hey, Summer? Is your hair that color because of your soap?” Qrow asked, holding up the empty shampoo bottle. “City dwellers.” He scraped a lock of hair between his nails and completely failed to remove the color. Slightly lighter than hers, now, but a similar deep red. “How the hell can anyone make soap complicated?”
“I put hydrogen peroxide in as a prank,” Summer said, forcing a smile and fighting to keep her voice steady.
Comprehension dawned on his face. “Oh!”
“I’ll get you some Lien for black dye so you can put it back to normal tomorrow.”
“I dunno, I kinda like it,” he said, examining his reflection in the mirror on the inside of his closet door. “…And I can spend the next few months telling everyone you’re my twin.”
“You can have him,” Raven said instantly.
Qrow grabbed his pillow and casually tossed it on her face, ignoring the half-hearted squawk of protest. “Whatever. Let’s get back to work.”
Who could hurt him? He was kind to everyone—even Dan , for gods’ sakes, with how unpleasant he’d been.
“ …Hey, this stuff isn’t going to stain my pillow, is it?”
“It removes color from your hair, actually.”
[A bit rushed, but it exists.]
Because Yang is really just Raven 2.0 combined with STQ’s antics, so like
these 4 idiots are just bad at parenting s’all
Summer: now that the baby is almost due, what excites you the most about being a mother?
Raven: being a milf, of course.
Qrow, to Taiyang: There is only room on this team for ONE unstable person and I’ve held that title for a very long time, so you’re going to need to get it together.
Raven: Well, if you judge success by the number of enemies you make, that was a highly successful evening.
Everytime Taiyang cooks, he calls it Tai food.
So, over on the Fair Game Effect server, we did a little AMA!
The moderators of the Fair Game Effect Server hosted AMA’s for content creators and we participated (and had loads of fun doing so!) We wanted to post the questions and answers here for y’all who aren’t involved over there.
Here we go!!!
Essentially, Clover! After episode 12, a lot of us came together on the Clover Deserved Better Server. Once there, a few of us, including our previous member Ryan, had talked about creating a rewrite of the RWBY show from start to finish. A server was made and many joined in. The first change ever made from CRWBY-canon was that Clover would not die. It was also obvious for us that we were going to have fairgame canon in our rewrite, shortly thereafter we landed on Qrow and Clover being married before RWBY even takes place. Both characters hold a special place in our hearts and it’s Clover and Qrow who inspired us to take lead and start this project!
The biggest changes we wanted to see in RWBY Rewrite was more representation for POC and LGBT+ We’ve talked about characters ethnicities, gender identities, and sexualities at length and it’s something we want to take very seriously. Some of us draw on our own experiences and lives when discussing potential ideas. We haven’t confirmed many, but so far we have:
- trans Nora
- genderfluid Neo
- non-binary Ren
For ethnicities, culture, and racial backgrounds, we tend to look to their inspirations or who they’re based off of for more than just default white.
Additionally, we wanted to give each character a bit more depth. To be less vague, a lot of the background characters feel one-dimensional, and we want to explore and flesh them out even if those details wont be touched upon as much in canon. We are also tweaking a few relationships, but that’s something you’ll have to wait to see!
Yes! We generally like to allude to their inspirations. Some of the birthdays carry meaning behind them:
- Cinder’s birthday being on a holiday about witches and bonfires
- Weiss’s birthday being on the last blue moon we had
Others were simple:
- “Haha, Tai on tie-dye day
- “Mercury is a bitch, I’m a bitch, why not both be gemini bitches?”
We actually started the project in the midst of the Clover Deserved Better movement, and therefore made the decision to keep Clover immediately as we not only wanted him back, but we thought it was a good writing decision as Clover balances Qrow out.
Immediately following that decision, we knew we wanted Qrow and Clover together romantically. Within approximately a week of knowing that, it was suggested that they knew each other from the Vytal Tournament, and it quickly evolved into them being together since their Academy days and being married before RWBY takes place.
After we decided they met at the Vytal Tournament, it kind of evolved into this monolith of an idea. If you read during fairgame week this post, they initially meet during the ball, but they don’t exchange names. Clover spends most of the tournament trying to find Qrow. They end up actually fighting in the 4x4s in the tournament. Clover and Qrow end up freezing when they see each other, and Clover first hears Qrow’s name from one of the announcers.
A dynamic we want to make sure is clear with their relationship is trust. Since Clover is in the military, and Qrow doesn’t necessarily trust Ironwood, we want to convey that Qrow trusts Clover with his entire heart and vice versa. They are also incredibly close to their nieces. Mirroring how Ruby looks up to Qrow, Yang looks up to Clover! This is reflected in her design, mostly the sleeveless-ness. Fashion runs in the family.
While we don’t want to give too much away, we have worked hard at developing Clover’s backstory! For one, we created a team (team CLVR) that he used to be a part of and has since grown apart from, but they are still lifelong friends. (You can read more about them here.)
We’re trying to give everyone established backstories, even if they don’t make it into the story itself we like to have them there for continuity and it helps to see how characters would interact based on their experiences etc…
We are developing a lot with the history of Remnant. It’s not complete, but a few things we are working on are the White Fang and the Great War.
STRQ: We are diving deep into this team, actually!
- We have a lot of ideas for Summer specifically, about who she was before she became “Ruby’s dead mom, Tai’s dead wife”.
- We want to make Raven’s feelings a bit more clear, specifically with her initial trust and love for her team and what caused those feelings to fade away.
- They’re going to have some more designs as well, reflecting their ages. (They don’t need to wear the same outfits from birth to death).
- We will be focusing on Tai’s emotional state after losing the of the loves in his life, as well as developing his relationship with his daughters.
- There is still much more to be done for them, but we plan on giving them plenty of love and development.
Those are all the questions we got! If this sparked any curiosity in ya, feel free to send asks!
Big thank you to the mods on the Fair Game Effect Server for hosting our AMA and to everyone who sent in questions! We hope you enjoyed it!
“Hey. Loving the outfit, darling.”
“I can’t promise you’ll leave without a scratch, copycat.”
“Thanks. I’ll try not to get blood on it.”
“She won’t be the one bleeding.”
During the doubles round of the Vytal Festival, Blake and Yang of Haven’s Team JWBL (Jubilee) goes toe-to-toe with the sweethearts of Beacon: Qrow and Taiyang of Team STRQ!
Remember inbox is OPEN for questions about RMEN and the Swap AU!
Hold on wait STRQs time in Beacon, a jealous schoolmate greets them calling them QTRS (quitters) come on that’s clever
Somebody said Yang probably only has her name because Tai and Qrow just called her a version of Taiyang Jr and this is the only rwby/strq headcanon I’ll be thinking about for years
Raven: *takes jabs at her teammates skills every change she gets and is constantly making fun of them*
Random person: *insults any member of strq*
Raven, drawing her sword: So A Bitch Wants To Die Today!?