The airship landed, the blonde boy running to a trash can on the dock and continuing to vomit. The group stepped out on the dock looking at the towering, castle-like building before them. “Beacon Academy,” Ivor stood in awe, “we finally made it.”

The group was ecstatic that they made it to the place that would teach them about the thing they would do for the rest of their lives. All except for Vulcan. Beneath the wrappings, he grimaced. Another school, another chance to be harassed, he thought. Vulcan had a hard time making friends, Turkis, Ivor, and Laurel, were low key the only friends he had outside of his family. Frowning, he thought back to an incident from his childhood. He was in fourth grade at the time.

“Do you have any idea what that demon did to those boys?” The headmaster screeched. Vulcan sat in a chair outside of the headmaster’s office, at that point he didn’t wear wrappings, showing his condition to everyone. He was naive back then, expecting to be accepted despite his deformity. Alas, it wasn’t meant to be, he was ruthlessly bullied by several boys, and the girls shied away from him in terror.

“The only demons here are the boys tormenting him! You and the teachers don’t even do anything to stop it, he has told you repeatedly that he was being bullied, but you do nothing to stop it!” Vulcan’s mother retorted. Vulcan didn’t know why he was in trouble, he was only defending himself. The screaming continued.

“Well maybe if your child was normal-“ The headmaster was cut off mid sentence.

“Normal? Normal!? Do you think he wanted to be born like that?! Do you think it is his fault he is the way he is?!” Vulcan’s mother screeched at the headmaster. Mrs. Salamandra was one of the lucky few that could fit multiple punctuation marks into a single sentence.

“You have to understand that he’s just a child, he doesn’t know what he’s doing.” His father spoke.

“I don’t care! I want the boy out of here!”

Vulcan shook his head to rid himself of the memory. This is a new start, I don’t want to blow it already. “Hey Vulc, you coming?” Laurel said as the rest of the group walked towards the academy.

“You guys go on ahead, I’ll catch up with you.” Vulcan replied. He wanted to have a look around, to get an idea of the academy’s layout.

“Okay then, see you later.” Turkis said, and the group departed. Vulcan started looking around the courtyard, mapping the entrance’s layout. He was caught off guard by a loud bang. Looking in the direction of the disturbance. Ruby was covered in ash, standing next to a white haired girl with a matching dress. He recognized the girl immediately, Weiss Schnee, heiress to the Schnee Dust Company. He wanted to find out what was going on, but he was intimidated by the heiress’ presence. A girl with black hair, a bow, and a black dress walked forward and said something to Weiss, causing the heiress to storm off in anger.

“I wonder what that was all about.” Vulcan murmured to himself. He spent a bit longer looking around before heading into the academy.

He found the rest of his group standing near the back of the crowd of students filling the room. “Find anything interesting?” Ivor questioned.

“A gum packet, 2 lien, and Weiss Schnee, so no, not really.”

Before the rest of the group could ask what he meant by that, Ms. Goodwitch readied the microphone, a grey haired man wearing glasses stood next to her. Professor Ozpin, Laurel thought. Ozpin walked up to the microphone. “I'll... keep this brief. You have traveled here today in search of knowledge, to hone your craft and acquire new skills, and when you have finished, you plan to dedicate your life to the protection of the people. But I look amongst you, and all I see is wasted energy, in need of purpose, direction. You assume knowledge will free you of this, but your time at this school will prove that knowledge can only carry you so far. It is up to you to take the first step.” Ozpin spoke in a voice that seemed to command everyone. Ozpin walked away from the microphone and left.

Glynda walked up to the microphone and spoke. “You will gather in the ballroom tonight; tomorrow, your initiation begins. Be ready. You are dismissed.”

“That was… weird.” Ivor spoke, confusion evident in his voice.

“Yeah, it was like he was there, but a million miles away.” Turkis replied. Why do I feel like he’s hiding something, Vulcan pondered.

“I guess we should head to the ballroom.” Laurel interjected, hoping to change the subject.

“Yeah, sure” Vulcan agreed.

“So that girl in black said something that made Weiss go ballistic.” Turkis spoke as Vulcan was retelling his escapade in the courtyard.

“From what I could tell, yes.” Vulcan replied. Laurel looked deep in thought. “What is it Laurel?”

“Did that girl have a book?” She questioned, Vulcan looked at her with a puzzled expression.

“Well I saw her holding something, but it was too far away to tell.” Vulcan responded.

“I think I talked to her on the airship, tried to get to know her. She only told me that her name was Blake Belladonna.” Laurel said. Ivor laughed in response.

“What could she have said to make her meltdown?” Ivor said through his laughs.

“Beats me, but I’m going to bed, it’s pretty late.” Vulcan said as he climbed into his sleeping bag.

The cloaked figures reacted in various ways to the news. “Finally, that old fool will be ours!” A figure with the voice of a young girl chuckled.

“Yes Cagnazzo, we will butcher that lizard alive!” A figure with a deep voice replied.

“Calm down Ciriatto, we need to go about this calmly.” A figure with a young man’s voice spoke.

“Oh, you’re the one to talk, Libicocco. You’re first reaction to seeing an enemy is, kill, kill, kill!” Farfarello responded with particular distaste at his comrade’s behavior.

“Well excuse me, Mr. Teacher’s pet! I didn’t ask for your opinion.” Libicocco retorted, mocking his comrade’s status. Insults between the two were shot back and forth, before roping most of the group into the argument as well.

Calcabrina let out a sigh as chaos erupted around her. “I’m surrounded by idiots.”

“SILENCE!” The final figure roared and the other 8 figures retreated back in fear. “Just because we’ve finally got Draghignazzo back on the radar after 17 years does not mean the rest of you can act like animals fighting each other for food! You are the Malebranche, commanders of Grimm, not some newborn beowolf pup.”

“Yes Scarmiglione, it won’t happen again sir.” Farfarello apologized.

“Farfarello, as my second in command I expected more from you,” Scarmiglione said, at this, Libicocco gave a smirk in the direction of Farfarello, “and Libicocco, you need to learn to control your temper.” Libicocco’s smirk vanished as fast as it appeared.

“Now that we know the location of our old friend, one of us needs to go terminate him.” Scarmiglione continued. “All who wish to kill that scum, raise your hand.” Not a single hand was raised. “Oh for gods' sakes, Libicocco!” The Malebranche in question sat up. “You are one of our most competent fighters, go to Beacon Academy, the initiation will begin tomorrow, find and kill Draghignazzo, and if possible, the students as well.”

“Yes sir, I will not let you down.” Libicocco faded into the shadows and vanished.

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