Nighttime at a forest clearing. A Mistral airship can be seen landing. The doors open, revealing its occupant as Neopolitan, who drops her disguise and is revealed to be wearing a new outfit. She looks to see someone step out of the forest, revealed to be Cinder Fall also sporting some new clothes: a cape which conceals her Grimm-ified left arm as well as an eyepatch that covers the left half of her scarred face. She stops to inspect the airship.
Cinder: It should get us to Solitas. After that, you might want to try materializing yourself some snow boots. (continues walking)
Neo rolls her eyes at Cinder's remark. She steps out of the airship and holds her hand out, and Cinder stops walking and has an irritated look on her face. Neo then places her hand on the airship and uses her Semblance to transform it into an Atlesian Manta aircraft. Cinder smiles at this. She then retracts the disguise and snaps her fingers with a smirk on her face.
The two of them board the airship.
Cinder: And I'm happy to say I still do.
The two smile evilly as the airship's door closes.
Back in Argus, multiple Manta aircraft engage in dogfights against Manticores and Sphinxs above the ocean. The Leviathan itself slowly trudges through the water approaching the city. Some aircraft fly by for a gun run on the towering Grimm. The Leviathan, however, simply dives below the ocean and swims.
Air Control: All units, be advised: Leviathan-class Grimm has submerged but is still on approach. Preparing hard-light shields, over!
Elsewhere, Ruby Rose and her friends overhear the radio chatter with looks of horror on their faces. Caroline Cordovin continues to struggle to get the Colossus' arm cannon out of the water with it being covered in ice and rock Dust.
Manta Two-Two: We're getting slammed by hostiles out here! Where is Cordovin?!
Cordovin: This is your fault! Do you hear me?!
Yang Xiao Long and Blake Belladonna can be seen running out of the forest to rejoin the group.
Ruby: Yang! Blake! Are you okay?
Yang and Blake notice the disabled mech.
Blake: What happened?
The group then hears the Leviathan roaring.
Yang: Was that a giant Grimm?
Weiss: Yes... and we just ruined the only thing capable of stopping it...
The group wastes no time boarding the aircraft. It begins to fly away. Ruby watches with pity as Cordovin continues to struggle to move the mech. Cordovin herself yells out in anger.
Cordovin: This is your fault!! YOUR FAULT!!! This is... (gives up)
Soldier: (over radio) Ma'am, what's your status? We need an answer, over!
Cordovin: ... your fault... (looks down sadly)
Blake: I'm so sorry...
Yang: Don't be. This isn't on you.
Ruby: You're safe, that's all that matters.
Blake smiles at her leader and the two hug. Ruby looks to Yang and the two share a smile.
Maria: I suppose I have to be the bad guy and say it, getting the lamp to Atlas is still our top priority, and right now we have the perfect opportunity to head straight for it. We may not get another chance like this.
Yang: No way!
Weiss: We can't leave, not like this.
Blake: It's like you said, a Huntress is supposed to protect others to the bitter end.
Maria looks to Ruby, who just shrugs and smiles. Maria smiles back and continues to fly.
Ren: I think we can manage.
Jaune: Got a few ideas?
Ruby: I've got one.
Qrow: Eyes up, everybody. It's back.
The Leviathan swims for a bit before resurfacing above the water, letting out a terrifying roar.
Manta Three-Four: Argus Base, this is Manta 3-4! Leviathan has hit the shallows and resurfaced! We need those shields up now, over!
From the city, a large crowd gathers as they look out to the ocean with concern. Terra Cotta-Arc is seen making her way through the crowd, eventually reuniting with her wife Saphron and their son Adrian, before looking out to the ocean again in concern. As the Leviathan approaches Argus, a hard-light Dust barrier is erected, halting its progress.
Manta Two-One: Target stopped! Engaging, over!
A pair of Manta aircraft are seen firing shots at the Leviathan. Suddenly, the Leviathan unleashes an energy beam attack from its mouth. It shifts the beam over to one of the poles powering the hard-light Dust barrier, destroying it. The Leviathan roars.
Ruby and her friends watch in horror from their aircraft.
Oscar: It tore straight through...!
Air Control: All squadrons, fall back to evacuation procedures. Disengage Leviathan! I repeat, disengage! Over!
Ruby: No, wait!
Ruby runs up to the radio.
Ruby: We can stop it!
Air Control: Who is this? Identify yourself!
Ruby: I'm a Huntress. My team and I are heading to the Leviathan and can weaken it for you to attack!
Everyone looks at Ruby in shock.
Jaune: We can?
Ruby: I can.
Maria: Ruby, when I said "trial by fire"--
Ruby: I did it at Beacon and at the farm.
Weiss: You really think you can do it now?
Ruby: I don't have a choice.
Air Control: Manta 5-1, your ship is currently flagged as hostile. You will receive no support, over.
Ruby: (picking up radio) Fine, we'll do it alone if we have to.
From her mech, Cordovin overhears Ruby's radio chatter.
Ruby: We can hit it while it's stopped at the next barrier. Ren, you're up!
Ren and Jaune proceed to combine their Semblances, masking the airship as it weaves between the air battles between Grimm and Atlas forces. The Leviathan makes its way to the next barrier and charges its energy breath again.
Qrow: We're too late! Pull up!
The Manta aircraft pulls up out of the way as the Leviathan fires its breath, destroying the next barrier and toppling a cupola off one of the buildings in Argus. Ren and Jaune collapse as their Auras are drained.
Jaune: Damn it...!
Ren: That's all I've got!
Blake: It's on the move again! We need to stop it!
Yang: What do we do?
Ruby thinks for a moment, before to looking to Weiss.
The Leviathan continues to approach Argus, but suddenly, the aircraft carrying Ruby's group opens up its hatch doors.
Nora: Eyes on us, ugly!
Blake: Is it working?
Maria: Unfortunately, yes! Hang on!
Blake runs over to Weiss, who is maintaining a Glyph she activated.
Ruby is seen riding on the back of Weiss' Queen Lancer summoning.
Ruby: (to herself) Okay, okay, you can do this... You have to do this!
Eventually, Ruby stops in front of the Leviathan. She closes her eyes and begins to concentrate, the noises all around her slowly muting out.
Yang: Ruby? Ruby, hurry, something--
Ruby takes out her earpiece and tosses it into the water below. She closes her eyes again to concentrate. As she concentrates, Ruby thinks back on various memories:
She thinks of her father and sister, when Zwei first arrived at Team RWBY's dorm room, when she and her team are about to start a food fight, and when they get noodles after their victory in the tournament.
Suddenly, Ruby starts to frown as bad memories start to flood her mind: the night when Jaune trained alone with a recording of Pyrrha, when she saw her friends wounded as Beacon was being evacuated, when Yang sank into depression over the loss of her arm.
Ruby whimpers upon remembering the deaths of both Pyrrha and Penny...
Suddenly, Ruby opens her eyes again and notices the Leviathan standing face to face with her.
Yang: Why'd it turn away?!
Ruby then remembers she has the Relic of Knowledge on her belt, which caused the Leviathan to have its attention on her.
Ruby: No, no, no, no!!
Suddenly, the Leviathan opens its maw and lunges toward Ruby...
Ruby: (reeling back) J--JINN!!!
Suddenly, time stops. Everything slows down and freezes, even Yang who calls out her sister's name.
Ruby then breathes a sigh of relief as she hears the rattling chains of Jinn.
Ruby: I'm sorry... I don't have a question for you. I just... I just needed a little more time...
Ruby looks to Jinn, who has a stern look on her face.
Jinn: I know... and while you don't seek knowledge, just this once, I shall give it freely. I will not allow you to use me without a question again... (smiling) Even if this was clever.
Ruby nods at Jinn. She then turns to face the Leviathan again and closes her eyes to concentrate once more. Time slowly starts to go back to normal.
She thinks back to when Team RWBY decorated their dorm room, when Weiss gave her coffee, when Blake cheered for Weiss in Professor Port's class, when Yang was training her before leaving for Beacon, when Team RWBY celebrated their victory after saving Vale.
And finally, Ruby thinks back to her mother, her white cloak blowing in the wind as she overlooks a cliff watching a sunset. She then turns around, offering a warm smile. Her own Silver Eyes reflect back to her daughter's...
Ruby's own eyes then shine bright, the brightest it has ever been. A massive white light engulfs the area, turning the Leviathan to stone. The citizens of Argus and the Atlas military cheer as the Grimm threat has been nullified. Ruby's friends give proud smiles and Maria breathes a sigh of relief.
The light retracts back into Ruby's eyes, and she turns around to look at the city of Argus still standing. Suddenly, Ruby hears a stone crackling behind her. The Leviathan's head manages to move and tries to aim at Ruby.
Cordovin: I'll take it from here!!
Suddenly, Cordovin shows up in the Colossus, its arm cannon now detached. Everyone looks in shock. Without the weight of the cannon, the Colossus begins to run toward the semi-petrified Leviathan.
Cordovin: (smiling) After all, I was sworn to protect the people!
The Colossus' left hand then transforms into a giant drill. Cordovin uses the drill to destroy the Leviathan, causing it to dissipate. The people of Argus cheer while the Arc family looks on with stupefied expressions.
The Colossus then walks over to Ruby. Its cockpit opens up revealing Cordovin herself standing in a stern military manner.
Ruby: Thank you. And... I'm sorry.
Cordovin: The Atlas military can handle the stragglers.
Ruby: What, uh... What are you saying?
Cordovin: (smiling) I'm saying I don't think anyone would notice if one more ship went missing in my lengthy report.
Ruby smiles back at Cordovin, who then turns the mech around and runs off to join her men in taking down the remaining Grimm.
The airship Ruby and her friends are in flies through the night sky.
Maria: We should have just enough fuel to make it.
Ruby: Thanks, Miss Calavera.
Qrow: Hey, Ruby. You did great out there today, kid. Just don't go giving me heart attacks like that again.
Qrow is about to take a drink from his flask, but ultimately decides not to. Ruby hugs her uncle.
Ruby: I love you, too.
Qrow smiles at his niece as she walks away to join her friends.
Maria: You weren't half bad yourself today, Qrow.
Qrow: (smiles before sighing) I feel like they did all the heavy lifting.
Maria: But you were there to help when they asked for it, and you were there to catch them when they fell. Literally, if I recall.
Qrow: Thanks. You know, it was pretty incredible getting to see the Grimm Reaper in action.
Maria: Ha, you should have seen me when I was your age!
Qrow smiles as the two of them look out the cockpit's window to the night sky.
In the back of the aircraft, Weiss, Blake and Yang sit together.
Weiss: I'm sorry you went through that nightmare. But, I'm glad Yang was there for you in time.
Blake and Yang smile before the latter takes the cat Faunus' hand.
Yang: We were there for each other.
Nora: Took the words right out of my mouth.
Everyone then looks to Ruby.
Ruby: Hey, stop it!
Ren: You petrified a Leviathan... after diving down the barrel of a cannon!
Ruby: (laughs) Don't act like you all haven't done crazy stuff before! I mean, Oscar made a successful crash landing! He's a fourteen-year-old farm hand!
Jaune: That was seriously impressive.
Blake: We'd have been stranded without you.
Oscar: I... thanks, but... I've been meaning to tell you guys... I didn't land the ship on my own.
Oscar thinks back to when the airship was about to crash land.
Oscar: We're gonna crash! We're gonna CRASH!!
Ozpin: Stay calm, it's going to be okay.
Nora: Ozpin took control?!
Oscar: No, he guided me... And then he was gone again...
Yang: Does that mean he's been watching us this whole time?
Oscar: I don't know, but... it at least means he was looking out for us.
Everyone ponders this revelation before Qrow speaks up.
Qrow: Hey, if you've never seen Atlas in person before, you don't wanna miss this.
Ruby and her friends walk up to the cockpit window.
Ruby: Is it weird that I'm sorta nervous?
Yang: No, I'll believe we've made it to Atlas when I see it.
Weiss: Well... believe it.
The airship comes out of the clouds, and the floating city of Atlas is seen coming into view.
Maria: You know, you make the trip up to Atlas over and over, but you never get used to that view. (her prosthetic eyes start to act up again) Oh, come on!
Weiss leans forward and has a nervous look on her face. Ruby notices this.
Ruby: Weiss, what is it?
Everyone looks up, and notice above the city of Atlas many Atlas Airships.
Weiss: The Atlas air fleet... I knew all of our ships were called back, but...
Qrow: They're set up like they're expecting an attack...
Suddenly, the radio turns on.
Atlas Air Control: Manta 5-1, welcome home...
Emerald: Mercury, I wanted to...
Suddenly, she notices Mercury's face has an expression of horror as he looks out the window. Emerald looks to where he's looking.
Emerald: What is she doing?
A Beringel is seen crawling out of one of the black, tar-like pits, with Salem herself standing close by. She then uses her magic as Nevermore wings suddenly sprout from the back of the Beringel. The Beringel gets used to its new appendages, before flying up to join many other Beringels also grafted with wings. Emerald and Mercury continue to watch in horror.
Hazel: There's an old saying.
The two notice Hazel Rainart enter the room and stand next to them.
Hazel: If you want something done right... do it yourself.
Salem looks up to the army of Grimm she has gathered, before turning around and using her magic on the black pools again, engulfing the entire scene...