A hooded figure approached the gas station. She had dropped off her vehicle a while ago not wanting to startle the few guests with her obviously elemental-created car.
Song Ae-ri smoothly moved closer, a heavy looking bagpack on her shoulders. She noticed the car that sat at the gas station. Good, she appeared to be at the right place. A small smile played on her hidden face as she looked through the window of the near diner seeing both Kris and Diana eating together on a table. For a while, she hesitated, not wanting to disturb them, but she realized that having a hooded figure like her hang out around a diner would look not even just a little suspicious. So, Ae-ri opened the door of the diner shuffling to the table Diana and Kris shared.
Hello, you two. She had dropped her whiteboard on the table. Can I join you here?
Carefully, she slid her hood off revealing her light-red cat ears, which, after being buried in said hood for way too long, twitched pleasantly. Even still, her face was of a rather neutral expression.
Chirina licked her lips. The smell of blood was everywhere. She noticed the calls of goblins heading under deck, though and its implications shortly brought her back to her senses to steer her body to the scene of action. However, before she could move forward, she was grabbed by the collar and hoisted into the air. Confused, she flailed around until she saw that it was Eiko that had lifted her, she relaxed, just a little though, curiously awaiting what she had in store for her...
Flinging her to the enemy ship, though, was not a thing Chirina had expected. But, midair, she let out a adrenaline-rich scream, as the tiny banshee hailed down towards the deck of the enemy ship. She shifted her downward momentum so that she landed right on the shoulders of a rather burly guy. "Surprise!", Chirina snarled and then, bit down and her sharp fangs ripped into the guy's throat. Blood flowed into her mouth and dribbled down the corners and to her chin. The burly dude gurgled and his legs gave out, making him crumble to the ground. Sitting above the corpse, licking her chops, was Chirina, her blade "resting" halfway inside the back of the dropped soldier.
She drew the blade out of the body and hurled herself forward, a bestial howl erupting from her as she charged the mass of enemy bodies that were preparing to board the Aquarius. She revelled in the feeling of her sword cutting through bodies, leaping at enemies, biting into flesh and more.
After a short while, she stood there, breathing visibly, more than twenty-five corpses surrounding her. All of her face was coated in blood. Facing the rest of the enemy crew, she bared her sharp teeth, also covered in blood, and chortled maniacally.
Ae-ri Stands at a measly 4'9", though her height does not bother her at all, she likes being small as it allows her more flexibility in her repairs and constructions. Both her cat ears and tail are fully functional and she does not have any human ears. Thus, her hearing is now especially good. Which can be both good and bad.
Over the years, Ae-ri’s personality had changed a little. Despite the lab accident, she has still remained very experimental, often trying out a new approach to things or ways nobody had thought of before. But also in the ways of more reckless experimentation. She has no issues sacrificing her own well-being for progress, though she is a little more careful when it comes to the lives of others. Still, she is very curious in almost everything.
She has also lost the naivete of her youth and is quite more serious than she used to be and a lot less cheerful, even if her new traits sometimes want her to be a bit more childish. Her new traits have a noticeable influence on her, even if she often fights back and succeeded in adapting them to her lifestyle. She still prefers several things nowadays that one would accept from a cat, like liking fish and milk and enjoying headpats way too much for her own liking.
Even though her vocal chords are mostly healed now, thanks to her lab accident, she still doesn’t talk and mostly uses a mobile whiteboard to write on.
Other than that, she has developed a lot from the formerly reclusive teen to somebody who seriously wants to be close to her friends. However, new anxieties, especially concerning her new ears and tail, appeared and in public she tries to hide her new features as much as she can, since it is more than unusual for somebody to have ears like her or a tail. Now more than ever, it is visible that she is not normal, being both an elemental and victim of an elemental mutation.
Born in Korea to a family of engineers, Ae-ri grew up travelling around the world with her parents and being alone a lot of the times. As such, she, from a young age on, had to learn to be self-sufficient. At some point, when she was around eight, she started to tinker on old electronic devices her parents did not need anymore as a distraction and to waste some time. Never did she know before, that it would be so much fun for her and became almost her entire day from that point on. Although both her parents were rarely around, her father and mother were both proud of her and, in their spare time, taught her a lot of the things she might need to know. It was during that time, that she started to construct things on her own. At some point, she realized, she could manipulate water to some degree, but a lot more when she used it in the things she built. Of course, she was rather unaware of the consequences her abilities could bring her, but nobody, not even her parents noticed for a while, as her powers were too weak to notice outside her contraptions.
One day, though, not long after she turned fourteen, her mother, understandably quite shocked, found her fiddling with a metal press she built herself which was physically being powered by her water ability. Scared of anybody else finding out her powers, they decided, with a heavy heart, to send her to the Academy for training and, especially, safekeeping.
After the academy, Ae-ri built her own lab where she tried to invent more uses for her powers in contraptions and also ways to pass the boundaries of her physical ability. During one of her experiments, one that any other techmetal would strongly advise from doing, went wrong. Due to that, her DNA got spliced with that of her cat transforming her ears into those of a cat and placing them on top of her head as well as giving her a tail and several other personality traits that are more or less controllable.
Now with these “disabilities”, she depends much more on her friends than before and will never be without somebody else around.
-Her trusty box of her favourite tools
-A majorly improved version of her water gun from academy times
Blaire stalked the market, her faunus features hidden underneath a hood. Recently this remote realm strode further towards discrimination of faunus, while the established kingdoms tried to fix their past mistakes, so it was not the best to be seen as a faunus on these streets. It was best not to arouse suspicion.
While her sister, Skyra, wanted nothing more to be a huntress, to get away from the deeds of the Anti-Faunus groups and the White Fang on the other side, Blaire was stuck. Well, her sister leaving her got Blaire stuck. Not that she was mad at her sister for that, though. Admittedly, she was a bit more cooky than Blaire could bear, but that was not a big deal in the big picture.
"A mango, please.", she asked a merchant, who looked at her with wide eyes and a smile, happy to finally have customers again. This kingdom was on the brink of collapse, economically devastated and not many could afford to buy a lot from the markets. Blaire estimated that, without any foreign influence, the realm wouldn't last two more years, although it appeared as if the ruling class had not noticed that. They had shifted the blame on the many faunus who used to live here. Many discriminatory and segregating laws later, only a handful of faunus still bothered to live here, most, though left or were chased out.
Blaire dropped a couple of coins on the counter and snatched the mango that the merchant had brought. It was not the most glorious fruit but it would do for her daily dose of sugar. She sank her fangs into it forgetting for a second that she'd be visible to the merchant. "Shit..."
The eyes of the merchant changed expression multiple times, from relieved and happy to scared to mad. "Faunus!" He pulled something akin to a sword from underneath his counter. It barely counted as a blade, to be fair, as rusted and in disrepair as it was. "Yes?", Blaire replied calmly. "You creatures don't belong here! This is a human only zone! Your filthy thieving kind are not allowed here. Leave before I have to make you leave!", the merchant uttered, his voice dripping with hatred. It appeared that he had either been brainwashed or experienced something very unpleasant in the past. Whatever it was, she wasn't welcome anymore. Sighing, Blaire removed her hood, her purple tipped cat ears popping out, then she, calm and collected, simply turned around stepping away from the shop, taking another bite of her mango, now not even bothering to hide her fangs anymore. Who needs stealth anyway.
She could feel the glares and stares on her back, well, more on her head and her ears. It seemed as if it had been a while since they had seen a faunus in this area. That meant, she had to look somewhere else. It was her task to look for the last faunus community in this city and escort them out and away to Menagerie. "Get out of here, mutt!", somebody called after her. It was annoying, sure, but she was used to being yelled at for being a faunus, nothing special.
Suddenly, two armoured policemen approached her. Compared to the rest of the city and its inhabitants, they looked polished and clean, not in any disrepair. "Why are you not working?", one of them exclaimed brashly, not even trying to sound civil and nice. "Hello, officer. What can I do for you?", Blaire replied sweetly. "Don't get cheeky with me, dirty street rat!", the officer spat. "Rat? Oh, officer, I am not a rat, I am a cat. Although I can see why one would confuse the two." A smile played on Blaire's features. With a final bite, she finished her mango. One of the policemen, the one who hadn't spoken yet, pulled out his gun and aimed it at Blaire. "Now, now. No need to escalate things." "You don't belong here, smartass. Get back to your worker camp! Now!"
Blaire rolled her eyes. "If I knew where to go, I'd get that problem off your hands." Blaire licked her teeth. "Quiet! Walk, or you'll be punished! We are already merciful.", the gun wielding officer exclaimed and came up behind her and poked her back with the muzzle of the gun. Violently, the other officer grabbed her arm. "Where is your number, mutt?" Now it was Blaire's turn to be slightly confused. Numbers? Was her information wrong? "How messed up is your city...", she whispered and shuddered a bit. She feared the situation of the faunus in this city were far worse than she had heard.
And that was her first mistake. The officer who had her arm in a tight grip trying to find a "number" had heard her and shoved her top the ground. Surprised like that, she tumbled to the ground, but managed to catch herself in such a way that the landing didn't hurt. "Why do you not have a number! Answer me!" A shot rang through the now slightly more crowded marketplace. Next to her face, a bullet hole had appeared in the pavement.
Blaire narrowed her eyes, her ears turned slightly backwards. "You do not threaten me.", she growled. It was over, she knew. All pretenses of remaining hidden and silently leading the faunus out were gone. "I am Blaire Dawn from Vacuo. I have come to free my brothers and sisters and you will not stop me. Not you, not your wretched regime, not your hive of scum and villainy that is this city!", Blaire growled and her eyes flared in anger.
For a moment, the two officers and the crowd froze, but then both officers pointed their guns right at her head. "Well, well. We can't have that. We cannot allow an insurgency from outside now, can we?" "Say good night, animal."
Blaire grinned and activated her semblance. Red eyes stared into those of the officers and they froze, shivering, crying, sobbing. Fear crept into their every fibre of their being. When her semblance deactivated, the officers shook their heads trying to clear their heads as best as possible. But when they looked up again, the cat faunus stood proudly in front of them, a black cape blowing in the wind behind her, a shield in one hand and a weird, curved blade in the other. "I'll advise you to back down.", Blaire called. It didn't appear to faze the policemen much. Another shot rang through the market and a high pitched "ding" as the bullet deflected from Blaire's shield. Quite quickly, the crowd disbanded and hurried into cover or into any building they could.
Blaire grinned widely, her sharp fangs very visible and then she rushed in. A hail of bullets simply ricocheted off her shield held in front of her. Arriving at the first policeman, she slammed the shield into him, whirling around with a backstroke, she sliced apart the gun of the second officer before, in the same motion, she destroyed the gun of the officer on the ground as well. "And stay down! I don't want to have to kill you." Swiftly, to not even get the chance to try and fight her, she ran, through the streets of the city towards where she thought, the faunus quarter was.
She went by the desolation. The closer she came to the faunus part of the city, the more ruined and destroyed the city looked, the closer she felt she was to her destination. And then she saw it. A huge fence right in front of her and at the end of the street, guard posts, like a ghetto. This wasn't fun. This wasn't going to be fun at all. Just from watching the guard post, she could spot at least six guards. At that number, she couldn't really try and not injure them or she might die herself.
She hadn't expected this, a full lockdown, it appeared, as if they were imprisoning the faunus, keeping them as far away from the regular citizens as possible and keeping them trapped in this... prison city. She had to expect patrols in the complex and a lot more guards at the gate than those six she could currently see. Blaire sighed. She never wanted to do this, but... it seemed this was the time for her... to do things she didn't like to do.
Her weapon clicked softly and snapped into musket form. Silently, she sneaked closer to the guard post... and fired. With a dying scream, a guard on one of the towers toppled over, dead. Blaire breathed, then rushed in, her khopesh in her hand again, the shield in the other, blocking the first shots with it.
When her first slice cut down one, the smell of blood flicked a switch in her. She danced around blades and flames, left, right, ducking, jumping. Not soon after, all the guards lie dead.
Blaire kneeled and bowed her head. This was not how it was supposed to go, not at all. She got up and darted into the compound, the noise of the battle already attracting additional guards, but also some obviously very ragged looking faunus, who tenatively peeked out of windows and open doors.
Another guard keeled over, hit by a shot from her musket. "I have come to rescue the faunus of this city. I will not allow anybody to oppose me! If you don't want to end like your colleagues, you should stand down and drop your weapons!", Blaire threatened loudly. Lots of clanging later, she saw several braver faunus who collected in front of her. Calls of "Who are you?" "Have you really come to get us out?" A soft smile played on Blaire's face. A smile of relief. "I'm Blaire Dawn. It is my task to rescue you all. Where I am from, our people are free. And where I plan to bring you is a whole continent just for us. Menagerie. But if you don't like it there, you can move to any of the kingdoms! You will be free, you can do any job you want, you don't have to work like this anymore! Now gather up everyone, nobody will get left behind. We will meet at the beach. My ship will pick you up."
Content, Blaire watched as the faunus, barely believing their luck scurried around, gathering their things, their relatives and friends. Meanwhile Blaire led the remaining guards out of the compound and returned to lead the exodus. About two hundred faunus were following her to the beach. Most of them looked horrible. Dishevelled, dirty, weak. But now, they seemed to look happy.
Reaching the beach, the faunus were talking excitedly amongst themselves when they saw the ship anchored in such a way that it allowed the loading of passengers through the dinghies lining the beach.
For a group of people who never boarded a boat, the loading of the dinghies went very smoothly and Blaire smiled at the progress. Almost everybody who wasn't already on the ship, was not in a boat getting ready to deploy, when she heard a loud yell from the land side. "Where are you going with my workers?!" The voice of a man cried. It belonged to somebody who looked so out of place in this city that it was almost comical. Decked out in fine coats with makeup on his face the leader of the city appeared in front of her.
Blaire huffed. "I thought we faunus were at fault for ruining your precious city? I am just solving your problem for you, good sir.", she quipped grinning. Even though the "king", or whatever he called himself, came with an army of at least 50 heavily armoured guards, Blaire was not afraid in the least. She motioned for the sailors to quickly take off from the beach.
"They were cheap labour. You are animals and animals live to serve humans." Blaire's smile dropped. "I cannot change the mind of the deluded. But I can at least purge them...", she muttered loudly. "Deluded? What are you talking about? You are an animal. And animals belong to humans. Animals don't have the right of free choice. Animals don't invent. Animals don't think. Animals don't..."
With a surprised gurgle, the "king" looked down as he was shut up by something sticking in his throat. A curved blade went right though him, the owner, Blaire, glaring into his fading eyes. "You were right to be afraid of us. Because, when we get treated like shit, we fight back..."
With that, she pulled her blade out of the dead body of the "king", sprinted to the ocean and dove beneath the waves before the guards could react and she disappeared, leaving behind a city that would now crumble even faster.
It was the worst thing she had ever had to do, but also the most satisfying thing she ever did and being greeted as a hero by over 200 former forced labourers wasn't bad either...
It turned out as she had thought that joining a school in the middle of the school year was probably not the best idea that could have been made. Cliques had long been formed, people knew each other. Not that Blaire thought she'd particularly care. At least not before she had experienced it first hand for the first time. She had never been in a school for her entire life and so, such... communality had escaped her.
Blaire frowned as she observed the students that arrived in the practice field. A lot of them were... very... well, silly, to put it mildly. Tacklehugging, hugging and prancing around without wearing any pants...
Somehow, right now, she was kind of happy that she didn't know any of them. She decided to postpone the "getting to know your classmates" part until later. Or never, she had nothing against that.
So, Blaire unsheathed her khopesh and turned slightly away from the rabble to practice some swings. With a blade like that, one had to use a different technique to a "regular" sword and that took time to perfect, naturally. Even now, she wouldn't allow herself to be called "the best khopesh huntress or future huntress", since she had no idea who else used such an exotic weapon as her.
Yes, Blaire knew she should have introduced herself to her new classmates, make friends. Some of them would sooner or later be her teammates, as far as she had heard. But right now, she couldn't be bothered to go out of her way to do so. No, she wasn't "scared" of contact with others. In her mind she huffed at that thought, having been called that by her guardian once.
Her cat ears twitched happily at the sound of her curved blade whooshing through the air in front of her.