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Excuse Me, Professor

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Day 1: Pyrrha

This wasn't at all what Pyrrha was expecting.

The warmth and greenery of Main Avenue, so foreign compared to the chilly walls of Sanctum U, bustled with activity as far as the eye could see. But unlike the rush of students flooding through campus, taking their first steps into academia, eyes bright and wide and full of hope, Pyrrha's toned figure and refined features were just a little older than this fresh-faced new crowd.

And in the crowd, she felt lost. This wasn't Sanctum.

But it was a new start. Here, she'd finally fulfill her dreams. She'd found her way at Sanctum. She could do it again here.

"Welcome to Beacon University," she murmured aloud, clutching her bag tighter at her side. This was home, now.

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Day 2: Ruby

"Aw, sis, but I don't want to make new friends!" she insisted. Why couldn't Yang see? She was perfectly content in her little corner, she didn't need to become friends with the other student teachers, and she was going to learn how to be the cool teacher that she always wanted to be- alone!

"Oh Ruby, but meeting people will help you! Y'know, expanding your horizons and all that," Yang insisted cheerfully. "Now let's get you dressed up. We can unpack later!"

"Why do you get to wear comfy-"

Yang saluted brightly in her athletic shorts and sweater. "Shoulda been a gym teacher too, then, Ruby!" And that was that.

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Day 3: Nora

"Ren, I can't believe we both got accepted! Like, who would've thought we'd be together for so long? I mean, we're not like, together-together or anything, but you totally know what I mean. Either way, I'm still super sad we won't be in the same sections. Why did you have to choose Home Ec? I mean, you're going to be the most amazing Home Ec teacher, yes, but I wanna do PE with you, and-"

"Nora?"

She finally paused, pale blue eyes wide as she took in the image of Ren watching her blankly. "Yes Ren?"

"…School starts tomorrow. Let's relax today."

She giggled. "Okay, Ren."

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Day 4: Blake

She thought that this orientation day was going to be useless.

As the dean of the program continued his speech, she gripped her arms tighter around herself. Here, she was just another face in the crowd, another student teacher sitting in the rows of candidates. She wasn’t special. No one was going to find her here.

She just needed to lay low, and everything would be okay.

“We do not tolerate any sort of discrimination in this institution,” the man announced at the podium, explaining their practices surrounding discriminatory behaviour.

She smiled, listening to his stance. Maybe this year wouldn’t be so bad, after all.

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Day 5: Jaune

“No, I, uh- I definitely have… always wanted to be a teacher!” he gulped, flashing nervous smiles to his peers. They traded curious glances, raised brows, lips quirked in judgemental smiles.

How in the world had he ended up here? This program hadn’t been his first choice- hell, it hadn’t been his fifth choice- and yet, here he was. He could still hear his grandfather chuckling proudly, since, “Jauney-boy has finally decided to follow in my footsteps!”

But, memorizing the plot of every historical drama, novel, and video game may have somehow gotten him a degree, but it sure as hell didn’t qualify him to teach.

Let’s… just not fail, I guess?

He gulped again. If that was where the bar sat, he was in for a rough year.

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Day 6: Ren

It wasn’t even the early afternoon yet, and he was already on his fourth cup of tea. …Maybe I wasn’t ready for such long days after all.

Once a day, his breaks lined up with Nora’s. The orange-haired girl made her thoughts very clear.

“They’re monsters, the lot of them! How could they think having this many classes a day is healthy?!”

“Nora, it’s not that bad,” Nora’s classmate, a redhead with a quiet energy that Ren felt at home next to, laughed lightly.

“Wait, if we break their legs, we won’t have class-“

He sighed. “Nora.” She giggled remorselessly, and he sighed again. Time to get cup five.

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Day 7: Weiss

"So, students," Professor Glynda Goodwitch concluded curtly, "does anyone have any questions?"

Weiss raised her hand confidently. "When will we find out where we're doing our practicum? I'm sure I'm not the only one who'd-"

"As I said earlier," the blonde muttered through grit teeth and a feigned smile, "you will all find out only right before the actual experience begins."

The pale girl crossed her arms, unimpressed. "So you're saying we'll have absolutely no way of knowing? That's ridiculous!"

"That's how this program works, Miss Schnee. Get used to it."

Utterly disgruntled, Weiss remained in her seat, mouth agape, long after the others left the hall.

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Day 8: Yang

It was completely out of character for her, she knew it- yet, Yang couldn't muster up the energy to care, stumbling back into her living room with all the enthusiasm of a corpse.

"Woah, sis, what happened to you?" Ruby muttered, poking her older sister's prone body on the couch.

Yang mumbled into a cushion, "I… what have we signed up for, Ruby?"

"I dunno, I'm having a good time with the Tech-bros. What did you do in class today?"

"Good for you, little sis," Yang muttered. "Glad you don't have to do two-hour icebreakers…"

Ruby gasped. "How do you have a two-hour-"

"I know-"

"But that's impossible-"

"Welcome to my world!"

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Day 9: Pyrrha

By the time the first weekend of the year came around, everyone ran to it like an oasis in the desert. They willingly pushed aside their work for just a few moments of respite, recuperating from strict deadlines and even stricter class expectations.

Pyrrha wasn’t like that.

Instead, she found herself seated in a coffee shop bright and early Saturday morning for no other reason than to see the clumsy blond who was always stumbling late into each of her history pedagogy classes. They had been partnered up to do a presentation. While they still had lots of time, he kept waving shyly to her over the counter as she worked, and that was enough to melt her heart.

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Day 10: Ruby

“Ruby,” Yang chuckled, “don’t you have work to do?”

The younger shrugged, brushing some flour off her cheeks. “I’ve got plenty of time, Yang. Let me make my cookies.”

Raising an unimpressed brow, Yang crossed her arms, leaning against the doorframe. “You should really get your homework done first, Ruby-“

“Ugh, Yang, you sound like Dad,” the brunette huffed, rolling her eyes overdramatically.

“…you know that it’s already 5PM, right?”

At that, however, all of Ruby’s ease vanished. “Wait- I thought it was still only 2-“

“Don’t you have an assignment due at 7?” As Ruby bolted past her wordlessly, though, the blonde simply cackled in amusement and went to do her own work.

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Day 11: Jaune

“This line isn’t going anywhere, is it?” the blond mourned, taking yet another utterly feeble step forward. “I’m stuck here. This is how I die.” He let out another pained groan, seeing the hundreds of people woven through the lineup ahead of him.

The one book in his hand sat heavy, a constant reminder that he couldn’t just ditch the crowd and leave the store. He had readings to do for the next morning. Maybe I should start reading that while I’m waiting, since I’ll be here forever anyways…

“Jaune?” Pyrrha’s light voice broke him out of his stupor almost an hour into his wait. She had just entered the store, a quizzical expression on her face. “You… know that book’s for free online, right?”

dammit.

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Day 12: Weiss

“That binder is not necessary.”

She huffed, crossing her arms defensively, chin raised. “I will have you know that this binder is very necessary, and I, unlike the rest of you, have already gotten a hang of this program.”

Sage chuckled, putting away his chemistry pedagogy manual. “Really now?” he asked, biting back a bigger smile. “You’ve really figured it all out already?”

Russel crowed from the corner, “She keeps everything all in one place since she doesn’t know what class we’re in anymore. Don’t pretend, Schnee!”

“Hey! That- that’s not-“ But in the end, she simply pouted, hugging her giant binder to her chest. He wasn’t wrong.

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Day 13: Ren

While he understood that it made sense to have mixed cohorts for a class on student development- psychology didn’t change whether you were helping children with mathematics over sewing, after all- he certainly wasn’t expecting this.

From the moment he walked in having kicked open the door, shoulders slouched, enough stubble and salt in his expression to make weaker students crumble, Professor Qrow Branwen was not here to play games. “Alright, kids,” he growled, voice thick with smoke and liquor and world-weariness, “it’s time to talk.”

Looking back on his notes for that class, Ren had never seen more confusing, nonsensical content in his notebooks in his life. He wasn’t surprised.

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Day 14: Pyrrha

“I’m ready.”

Pyrrha nodded sagely, then shifted to face Jaune. “Are you okay?”

Jaune shrugged weakly, face still planted firmly on the tabletop. “Nora, right? Why do you want to see this, anyway?” he mumbled.

Nora wiggled excitedly in her chair. “’Cause, PE and drama kids are free right now, and I want to see this prof!”

The words had barely left her mouth when the door swung open and a body zipped through the room, practically stirring wind in his wake. “Class! Are we ready! To take on more pedagogy!” He sipped on his espresso shot, practically bouncing off the walls.

Pyrrha sighed wearily, but Nora couldn’t stop her giggles. “History profs are fun.”

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Day 15: Yang

While the Education Faculty’s library was indeed wonderful, no one could deny that there was one major flaw with the building design.

As the clicks of students typing at their keyboards filled the quiet space, Yang found her eye rapidly twitching in frustration. Out of the corner of her vision, she could see Ruby’s amused, pacifying grin, but it meant nothing to her. The other two girls at their table- one working on an English literature lesson plan, the other planning some chemistry experiment- only watched her warily.

I hate this.

“It’s so damn dark in here! I can’t take it anymore!” she finally screeched, gathering everyone’s startled attention.

The librarians didn’t even look up when they shushed her in the windowless building.

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Day 16: Blake

“…you do know there are serviceable tables inside, right?”

Ruby shrugged brightly. “But Blake, it’s sunny!”

Much to her chagrin, Yang slung an arm around her shoulders, dragging her head down slightly under the weight. “C’mon, Blake, join us! It’s fall- it won’t be sunny forever.” With a snicker, the blonde added, “Even Weiss is joining, and she’s gonna burn so fast-“

“Hey!” the pale girl protested, shouldering her bag haughtily.

Blake rolled her eyes, but a smile still found its way to her face. As ridiculous as her groupmates for this term-long research project was, she had to admit- they had good ideas once in a while. It was a good day to have a picnic.

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Day 17: Nora

“This is going to be so much fun!” Nora cheered, stepping into the open patio of the bar. Thankfully there was more than enough seating for a huge portion of their general cohort available, so she quickly found a table with Pyrrha, that silly blond boy she liked so much, and of course, Ren.

And then, it happened.

“I’ll buy drinks for whoever can beat me in an arm-wrestling match!”

Immediately, the orange-haired girl perked up. Arm-wrestling? Free drinks?

The speaker was Yang, and another blond boy- Sun, if she remembered correctly- was cheering her on.

“Nora?” Pyrrha asked when she lurched to her feet.

“Nora…” Ren’s voice was plaintiff.

She rolled up her sleeve. “Let’s do this.”

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Day 18: Jaune

“You know that she’s super into you, right?” Neptune chuckled, slinging an arm around Jaune’s shoulders comfortably.

The blond grimaced as the other boy winked at a few female passersby. “Why in the world would Pyrrha be into me?!” he protested in hushed tones, biting back the flush in his cheeks.

Thank goodness the PE students have that mandatory class right now so she can’t hear this…

The coy boy shrugged, but the knowing smirk on his face gave away his stance. “I dunno man, I’ve seen the way you two talk in our student development class-“

“Nope. Nuh-uh. No way.” As they entered their next class, though, the possibilities wouldn’t leave his mind. Neither would the redhead’s smile.

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Day 19: Ruby

“But that’s not the point of the assignment!Ruby shrieked.

Rather than acknowledging her words, her classmates simply chuckled condescendingly. “Aw, is the little girl confused?” mocked the slate-haired man sitting across from her. “Do you need us to call your big sis to look after you?”

Instantly, Ruby’s eye twitched. It was nearly the end of the third week of classes, and yet, the others in the Technical Education crew still wouldn’t accept her. So what if she was the only girl?

Mercury smiled innocently at the professor as he walked by, and Ruby felt her blood boil.

I don’t need Yang to protect me. I’ll show you.

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Day 20: Ren

"Nora, isn't anyone going to notice? Your cohort is really small, after all-"

Yet, the orange-haired girl still confidently grabbed him by the arm despite his protests and dragged him into the center of her next classroom.

Why did I tell her Home Ec has a break right now?

He couldn't even find a seat before the doors burst open in a flurry of activity. Bodies flooded the room- amongst them was Pyrrha, the redhead waving delightedly upon seeing him, and Yang, the blonde's eyes lighting up dangerously when she saw Nora.

"Rematch-"

"Nora-"

"Let's go!" Nora shrieked ecstatically.

…I really shouldn't have told her my schedule.

He could already hear the sound of another destroyed table coming in the distance

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Day 21: Yang

“Sun, you know you’re going down, right?” She grinned wolfishly, tossing the volleyball up and down.

The boy in question shrugged. “Oh yeah? You think you can take me?” As he spoke, Neptune, Sage and Scarlet all joined his side in solidarity (although Scarlet was protesting about a watercolour-painting lesson plan being due).

Blake frowned as she joined the blonde on the grass in the center of the quad. “You… you all know we only have half an hour before class starts again, right?”

Yang nodded, nonchalant. “We’ll just have to make this quick!”

The game was decidedly not quick, and Professor Goodwitch was not pleased when they all arrived late and grass-stained.

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Day 22: Pyrrha

“Um… Ruby… isn’t that your-“

The younger girl covered her face in her hands, flushing from head to toe. “I can’t believe he’d do that, that’s so embarrassing,” Ruby groaned, muffled.

Pyrrha patted her gently on the back, looking back up wordlessly at the projected image of Ruby and Yang’s father- Professor Xiao Long, a friendly face in the main Teaching Office- onscreen in the huge lecture hall, his dating profile up for all students to see.

“And this,” Professor Branwen smirked into the microphone, “is why you, as teachers, likely should avoiding dating profiles. It’s very easy for students to find. Keep that in mind, folks- professionalism.”

Thank goodness I didn’t make one when Nora offered to help me…

From the back of the room, Tai Xiao Long squawked in outrage.

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Day 23: Weiss

Is… is that really how much work we have to do?

It had taken nearly all of Saturday morning, but Weiss had finally managed to organize what was due when for the rest of the term. The resulting study schedule, however, was terrifying.

Weiss adored this kind of intense content, but even she had her limits.

Taking a deep breath, she suddenly heard her phone vibrate against the tabletop. Opening up her messages, she couldn’t contain the snort which bubbled past her lips. Ruby from Tech was spamming her with memes of Professor Port, their History of Education professor.

‘Don’t you have homework to do?’

After a few moments, she got her response. ‘Meme now, work later.’

She didn’t respond, starting on her own readings- heart lighter than before.  

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Day 24: Blake

“…Ilia?”

The shorter woman blinked at her owlishly, eyes wide and shocked as they stared at one another across the check-out line. “Blake?”

What is she doing here? I moved away to leave it all behind, what’s going on, why would anyone be-

And yet, before she knew it, a tiny body had thrown itself up clumsily over the counter to wrap her in a tight hug. “Blake! Oh my god, you’re here!” Ilia gushed, absolutely beaming.

Blake stared at her, slack-jawed, as the shorter released her at last. “I… I didn’t know you were working here, now.”

“Me? What are you doing here?”

Blankly, Blake gestured towards her groceries. “Figured I should buy these- you can only survive on self-hatred and coffee for so long.”

Her childhood friend chuckled. “Let’s get you some food, then.”

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Day 25: Ren

“Ren, you drink coffee?”

Without even looking up, Ren shook his head. “I’m getting tea. Nora wants coffee for after her class ends.”

Jaune hummed in acknowledgement, and Ren could see the blond shove his hands in his pockets, waiting for Ren to look at him.

He didn’t.

“…Whatcha reading?”

“The paper for my next class.”

Jaune snorted. “Why would you do your readings in line in a coffee shop-“

“Because there is no other time,” Ren sighed, feeling the crushing weight of reality settling on his shoulders.

“…so… you don’t wanna talk right now?”

“Jaune, just go.” And back to his readings on his tiny phone screen, Ren went.

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Day 26: Yang

Yang strutted into the large auditorium, ready for the large seminar they were going to sit through. Oddly enough, it felt like there were far too many people in the room. However, the moment she took a look around, she instantly regretted having to be there that day.

A friendly hand on her shoulder pulled her attention away from the mess in front of her eyes for a moment. “What’s going on?” Nora asked, voice chipper, bouncing lightly in her shorts and running shoes. The PE candidates were going to the local trails afterwards, so the orange-haired girl was ready.

“The Elementary teachers are here.”

Immediately, Nora deflated. “’Kay. Let’s go find Ren and Pyrrha and Jaune.”

“’Kay.” Defeated, they shuffled along to find their friends.

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Day 27: Pyrrha

“Wow, Pyrrha,” Velvet murmured, running her fingers along the edge of the redhead’s notebook, “it looks lovely! I bet you’re able to keep track of everything in here.”

Jaune leaned across the table, almost proud. “Of course Pyrrha’s got it taken care of. You should see how neat all our presentations are thanks to her!”

Pyrrha chuckled wryly, fighting down the blush in her cheeks. “I… just like making things look nice.”

However, Velvet met her gaze, the brunette understanding and empathetic. She knew.

It was true- all of her notes were detailed and beautiful, her organization of her classes impeccable. Did that mean her assignments were ever done early? Nope. But maybe if Pyrrha kept her notes looking organized enough, she’d somehow manage to be better at keeping on top of everything the way everyone thought she was…

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Day 28: Weiss

“That’s Fox, isn’t it?” Weiss murmured aloud, staring at the boy working quietly behind the barista counter.

Coco leaned over to check as she thumbed through her French grammar lesson plan for her next class. “Yeah,” she confirmed, tossing her hair out of her face gracefully. “He needs to pay for textbooks somehow.”

Weiss frowned, trading glances with Blake and Sage, who were all sitting at their table in the Teaching Office’s café. “Um… they do know he’s blind, right? How does he know where everything is?”

Coco grinned wickedly. “We’re seeing how long it takes for his manager to realize it. Apparently the guy’s not the brightest.”

Weiss massaged her temple wearily. “Is that why he handed me the wrong tea?”

“No, that’s probably because you were mean to Yatsu when you first met.”

“It was an accident!”

Her classmates laughed at her anyways.

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Day 29: Nora

Inhale, tense. “I bet he can’t actually get women.” Exhale.

Grunt of exertion. “I bet he doesn’t actually have a degree. Dean Oz probably just let him in on a failed bet.” Sigh, relax.

Groan, stretch. “You do know that guy’s my uncle, right?”

“So? Dude’s weird!” Sun protested, collapsing down onto the weight bench. At this time of day, the student gym was completely empty.

Nora rolled her eyes, putting her weights back onto the rack. “He’s not weird, he’s just drunk!” she announced confidently.

Immediately, Yang held up her hands in defense. “No, he’s not. He’s just… eccentric.”

Nora shared a look with Sun, wiping sweat off her brow. “Drunk,” she agreed simultaneously with the boy.

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Day 30: Blake

How they had managed to fit almost twenty people into her hovel of an apartment, Blake didn’t know.

However, the scent of food everyone had brought for their impromptu potluck hung thick in the air, her mouth watered, and the company wasn’t the worst she could’ve asked for.

So, why weren’t they eating?!

“Guys, can you show me how to access the communal readings?”

“I don’t know where to find my assignments!”

“Don’t ask me, the portal isn’t even working for me, and IT is ignoring me…”

Ruby piped up quietly, “Guys, can we eat-“

“After!” four people cried out simultaneously, hunched over their computers and phones.

It’s Saturday night, Blake thought wearily. I just want dinner. And you all to leave. Soon. Please.

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Day 31: Jaune

Yatsuhashi: we’re gonna need to finish the ppt soon

Pyrrha: We’ll get it done, don’t worry! I’ve shared the slides with you all

Jaune: nice

Jaune: have any of you finished the readings

Pyrrha: Not quite, but when I do I’ll let you know!

Yatsuhashi: I’ll put the chapter breakdown on the first slide

Yatsuhashi: Go choose one to read

Jaune: no has anyone done the readings for port

Pyrrha: Um Jaune…didn’t we have to finish that yesterday? For the online discussion portion? It was due last night

Jaune: FUCKKK

Yatsuhashi: smooth

Dropping his phone onto the table, Jaune slumped back in his chair, whimpering lightly. I hate this.

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Day 32: Ruby

“Alright, Ruby,” she murmured under her breath, “you’ve got this. You’re going to be just fine.” Taking a deep breath in, she felt her entire body relax as she exhaled, long and slow. The quaking in her knees finally stopped.

She grinned. “Normal knees.”

Sis was right. I’m going to ace this presentation.

Finally, Dr. Polendina grinned from his seat at the back of the classroom, gesturing for her to begin. “Alright, Miss Rose. Whenever you’re ready.”

Ignoring the leering, yet mildly curious looks from her classmates, she straightened up and clicked open her presentation. “Hello everyone! Are we ready to learn?”

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Day 33: Pyrrha

Maybe it was the fact that she had been running around earlier in one of her classes with the PE candidates- but now that she was sitting still in this history pedagogy class, Pyrrha was freezing.

“Pyrrha, are you okay?” Jaune asked, confused.

She tried to smile weakly at him, but the tremors in her shoulders were hard to mask. “Is it… a little cold in here?”

With a heavy sigh, Yatsuhashi groaned, “They turn off the heating after six o’clock.”

“But… our class ends at 9PM, though…” Jaune muttered, straightening up suddenly as if he was only realizing the chill now. “What about us?

She sighed, wrapping her arms around herself, clinging onto whatever warmth she could. It was going to be a long night.

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Day 34: Ruby

Ruby puffed out her chest proudly as the man looked over her lesson plan. “With this activity, they’ll be able to put into practice all the technical skills in the curricular competencies in Tech Ed for this grade, and they’ll also get to work in different groups and help each other!”

“Wow, Ruby!” Penny cried, clapping her hands together excitedly. “That sounds like a wonderful lesson! I’d love to try it out in class!”

The short brunette giggled sheepishly. “D’aw, it was nothing…”

Dr. Polendina sighed, rubbing his temples wearily. “Um… Miss Rose, this is a lovely attempt to make a cohesive final assignment for your students, but… you know these are schematics for a weapon, right?”

Ruby pouted. “…so that’s a no?”

“That’s a no.”

Under her breath, she muttered sadly, “It would’ve been so rad though…”

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Day 35: Weiss

Her eyes opened slowly, naturally- blinking languidly, she squinted against the light streaming into her window. How long had it been since she had been able to enjoy a slow morning?

Is it the weekend? Was class cancelled?

Oh, who cares?

Contenting herself to snuggling into her pillow further, Weiss rolled over, smiling despite herself. It felt wonderful just lying there.

Suddenly, her eyes shot open. Class is at 6pm today.

…She had time, right?

Now frowning, she burrowed determinedly under her duvet once more.

…I haven’t done the readings, have I? Oh my god, we have a reflection due, too-

She got out of bed bitterly. There would be other days to rest. Today was not that day.

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Day 36: Jaune

He couldn’t deny that warmth blossomed across his chest when he saw Pyrrha’s face slowly light up, surprise melding into understanding and then, amusement. The redhead covered her mouth to stifle her giggles, eyes creased into half-moons as she stumbled out, “Jaune, Professor Branwen is going to tease you for that, you know?”

Jaune shrugged, wrapping the blanket around himself even tighter. “Well, if Beacon decides to turn up the heating, then maybe I wouldn’t need to bring a blanket!” After a moment, however, he paused, dropping his gaze to his desk sheepishly. “Did… did you wanna share?”

She blushed.

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Day 37: Nora

“It’s okay, Ren, I know we’ll get there at some point! I’m sure we just took a wrong turn somewhere-“

Ren groaned. “Nora, let’s just ask-“

“Nope!” She held up her hand in a tight fist, peering around the corner of the stacks as if she were hiding from someone.

From behind her, Ren murmured, “Nora, why are we doing this?”

She twirled on her heel lightly. “’Cause just looking for the book is dull, silly! This way, we’ll explore the whole thing while trying to find the novel!”

He pointed in the opposite direction. “But we know where it is, it’s right-“

Adventure ahoy!” she interjected, revelling in his groan of weary acceptance. She knew he wasn’t really mad. She was just happy to have some time with him- having separate classes was harder than she had expected.

Thanks, Ren.

She’d save those words for another day, though. For now, she had a game to finish.

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Day 38: Blake

The liquid poured down her throat smooth, filling her with a sense of ease as the warmth settled into her belly, the scent rejuvenating her from the inside out.

Coffee just had that effect on her.

I can do this.

Briefly, her eyes flashed over her phone. There were over one hundred unread messages. She knew who the sender would be.

For a moment, she opened up her laptop. Ignore him, Blake. It’s time to work.

It took merely two minutes of skimming through her readings for the girl to slam her computer shut again. She tossed her phone across the room as it buzzed for the umpteenth time.

Whatever.

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Day 39: Yang

“Are you sure?” her friends asked, confused, surprised.

Yang flashed them all a bright smile, her anxiety instantly dissipating when she saw all of her friends’ smiles emerge onscreen.

“Heck yeah I am!” she grinned. “Why wouldn’t I be? It’s been forever since we’ve gone out!”

“Well,” one worried man murmured on their large conference call, “it’s been so long since you’ve been free. We don’t want to bother you…”

Yang shook her head, brushing golden bangs out of her eyes. “C’mon, gang- it’s been over a month since I’ve seen you all! What’s wrong with just one night on the town?”

“You sure you don’t have homework to do, Ms. Xiao Long?” one of her friends teased.

She rolled her eyes. She had missed her friends.

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Day 40: Ren

“You have how much work?”

Coco sighed. “Well, I mean… we’re not only teaching a class, we’re teaching language, so you can imagine that it gets a little wild.”

Ren blinked, quietly putting away the one lesson plan he had been asked to turn in all month. “That… makes sense.”

“Don’t even,” Fox groaned, sprawling across the coffee shop’s counter as the milk for the latest order frothed properly. “I have to ‘prove my proficiency in piano’ next week. I’ve never even studied piano…”

Velvet raised her hand over her heart solemnly. “We’ll miss you, Fox.”

Fox groaned, and Ren blinked, blank. I guess Home Ec isn’t that bad…

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Day 41: Ruby

“Ruby,” Qrow groaned, crossing his arms as he leaned against the doorframe, “Dr. Polendina wants you to have your materials for that lesson plan done by next week.”

“Uh-huh.” She leaned over to the right, furiously mashing buttons on the controller in her hand.

The man sighed, running weary fingers through grey-streaked hair. “You’re killin’ me, kiddo. And Yang, what even- you know you gotta get the stuff done-“

The blonde scoffed loudly, eyes affixed to the screen. “Uncle Qrow, if you came to visit just to bum us out, then-“

“Yeah, Qrow, stop ruining our flow-“

“We’re almost done this boss fight-“

“C’mon, sis, we got this-“

The man rolled his eyes and walked back to the kitchen. His nieces were still kids, huh?

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Day 42: Weiss

“I’ve already finished this week’s work,” Ciel murmured flatly, checking her watch. “This is the last project I need to do this week. I have… 20 minutes before my bus arrives. We need to finish this in 15, and then I shall depart.”

Weiss groaned, throwing her hands up in the air. “Look, I’d like to finish my portion soon, but I have two more presentations to finish up this week-“

Neptune whistled softly. “Damn, Weiss. Does that mean you’ve already finished the other workshop prep for psych on Friday?”

The pale girl froze. “Wait- was that workshop for Professor Branwen due this week?”

He nodded wryly, and she practically screeched.

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Day 43: Jaune

Clicking through the nth webpage, he sighed, eyes flicking back and forth between numerous resources onscreen. "Ruby, how in the world did you finish your cohort's lesson plans?"

The younger woman shrugged, eyes affixed to her phone as she played a racing game. "I dunno. I just thought of activities on my own."

The blond pushed himself away from his desk, the wheels of his office chair creaking. "Cool, but like…how? I have one due tomorrow, and I just can't-"

Ruby waved an impatient hand at him. "Look, Jaune- just look it up online."

He pointed at his screen. "I can't find anything appropriate to put into an hour-long lesson!"

"Look harder!"

He almost tipped his rolling chair back in frustration.

Chapter Text

Day 44: Pyrrha

She coughed. Immediately, Sun turned to look at her, concern in his eyes. "You feelin' okay?"

Pyrrha smiled wanly, but as she swallowed, her throat stung, swollen. "I'm fine," she lied, blinking through the spots appearing before her eyes.

Sun raised a brow, doubtful. "You should take a day off if you're getting sick, y'know."

She shrugged. "I'll be fine."

"Pyrrha'll make it," Jaune muttered absently as he worked on an upcoming assignment on his phone.

Sun frowned, squeezing Pyrrha's shoulder as he got up. "Look, I've got to go to work," the Modern Languages candidate muttered, "but let me know if you need anything, ok?"

She beamed. "And you catch me up on Blake-"

He groaned, and she giggled into another cough. Maybe she was getting sick.

Chapter Text

Day 45: Blake

Sun groaned, collapsing onto the pile of comics he had painstakingly collected. "And tell me again why these books don't work?"

"Because," Blake muttered testily as her eyes flew through the catalogue for the umpteenth time, "none of these books will help me with my lesson plans."

The blond through his hands up in the air, frustrated. "Well, what would work, then? I already took out everything I could find in the library!"

She sighed. "Look. I have strict criteria I have to follow. And anyways, I'm not asking you to help me find books. Go do your own lesson plans, or whatever." The whole time, her eyes never left her computer screen, still searching for books.

Out of the corner of her eyes, she saw Sun's face fall, and a part of her heart fell as well.

Chapter Text

Day 46: Yang

"Miss Xiao Long!"

Instantly, the blonde jolted upright, feeling herself jerk up from where she had been laying upon the grass. With a groan, she ran a hand across her sweater- it was completely soaked.

"So," her professor asked, one eyebrow raised skeptically, "would you be able to tell me what strategies we could use in this situation?"

Yang blinked at him. After a few moments of pure, tense silence, she yawned, her eyes landing upon Pyrrha and Nora, who were seated across from her in their circle upon the grass. The two young women were trying to pantomime something.

She squinted at their actions, but soon enough, the blonde just muttered, "I dunno. Give 'em laps." And as her professor spluttered indignantly, she went back to sleep on the damp grass.

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Day 47: Nora

Pyrrha raised a curious brow, but the glint in her eyes was clear- the redhead was proud of her for scribbling so intently.

That very thought warmed Nora up to the core. While sitting next to the other woman had been a risky gambit during their first full day of class, she couldn't imagine having someone else as her PE partner during this rigorous program. After all, who else would validate her silliness other than Pyrrha and Ren?!

Suddenly, she felt eyes peering over her shoulder. Instinctively, she curled in upon herself, hiding her notebook. After all, her page was filled not with notes, but with scribbles.

The professor chuckled. "Doodling is actually an excellent tool for learning, Ms. Valkyrie," he announced. "Let's unpack this."

well… that worked out!

Pyrrha wasn't as proud of her, though. Nora giggled.

Chapter Text

Day 48: Ren

Why was he even doing this?

Carrying the trays was such hard work. There were hundreds- no, thousands- of people crossing his path as he strode across campus that day. Why the Home Ec students had classes in a different building across the campus, he didn't know (that was a lie, he did know- there weren't any ovens in the Education building, after all, and they needed to prep somehow) but the walk was more than a 'small' hassle.

When he entered the student lounge with a tray of cookies at precisely 12:04, however, it was all worth it immediately. He'd never get tired of seeing Nora's face light up like that.

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Day 49: Ruby

“But…” she murmured, looking dolefully at her email’s Sent folder, “…I definitely did send that assignment, though.”

“Miss Rose,” Professor Ironwood, their strictest professor of them all, muttered, “while that’s all well and good, I didn’t receive it. Now, you know how important timely assignments are in this program. You cannot be late returning your students’ work, now can you?”

“…yessir,” she mumbled at last, shuffling away. I did send it in though! I sent it a week before the due date!

But when Professor Ironwood approached her after class, explaining how it had ended up in his Spam folder instead, the damage had already been done, and she went home glum and weary.

Chapter Text

Day 50: Jaune

"Oh- darnit- where the heck is this building?!" Two months, and he still hadn't figured out how to make heads or tails of Beacon's campus.

Finally, he managed to stumble his way into the appropriate lecture building. Why in the world did they stick Education seminars in the Physics building? he groaned internally, shaking his hair, dispelling droplets of water through the air. And of course it's raining.

Shrugging off his raincoat, he scurried to the appropriate lecture hall. Much to his chagrin, the hinges squeaked intensely as he slipped in.

"Ah, Mr. Arc," Dean Ozpin called from the stage. "Thanks for joining us for our lecture on professionalism."

He winced as the whole hall turned to look at him. Of all things to be late for…

Chapter Text

Day 51: Pyrrha

Despite being wrapped up in Jaune's blanket and Nora's hugs, with Ren's thermos of tea in hand and Sun's hand on her shoulder in support, Pyrrha was still freezing in the chilly library. Her head spun, and every muscle in her body ached. What class was she even in again?

Softly, Sun murmured in her ear, "Pyrrha, this is just a study session. Go home."

"No," she croaked, putting on a brave smile despite the pounding in her head. "I'm fine! We just-" she coughed, the sound wretched and pained, "-just need to finish this lesson plan, right?"

Nora tapped her on the nose. "You're going to bed, silly."

And, as if it were a magic spell, she drifted off in her blanket cocoon, feeling warm for the first time in days.

Chapter Text

Day 52: Weiss

The sun was shining for the first time in days, Winter had sent her a care package with her favourite teas in the mail, and she was practically alone in the Sciences wing of the Education Department’s main building. She was going to be so productive that day, she just knew it-

-at least, until she walked into the student lounge on the second floor.

A student she’d never seen before was crying silently on the couch. Immediately, the pale girl froze. If she backtracked exactly the way she came-

-and, of course, her foot bumped against a chair, sending a ringing echo through the lounge.

Dangit.

The crying girl looked up, green eyes wide and watery as she forced a smile. “S-salutations!” she mumbled.

Weiss groaned. There went her study plans.

Chapter Text

Day 53: Nora

Nora grinned wolfishly, tugging baby-pink rubber boots onto her feet.

Ren crossed his arms, leaning against the wall of their apartment. “You sure you want to go out in that? I mean, we don’t have school today because of the wind warning.”

 “Of course I do, silly! Pyrrha doesn’t have roommates! Who’s gonna take care of her?”

Rolling his eyes, he disappeared into the kitchen for a few minutes. Finally, he reappeared, a small backpack in hand. “Put on your raincoat, and take this with you.” To her confused look, he explained, “Tea and soup. She’ll need it.”

She beamed. Before she left, however, she took a moment to salute a bent, broken umbrella which matched her pink boots tucked into the corner. “I’ll do you proud.” And with that, she was off.

 

Chapter Text

Day 54: Yang

She was unstoppable today.

Strutting down Main Avenue with all the confidence in the world, Yang breathed in deep. Fresh, crisp, post-storm air rushed into her lungs, the light breeze tugging her long, golden hair in a cascading stream behind her. Wandering eyes followed her path, her heeled boots drawing attention with each stride.

Ruby rolled her eyes. “Got a date planned, sis?”

Weiss shook her head wearily. “Don’t you have like, sports to do or something?”

Blake just shrugged. “What’s the occasion?”

Yang flashed her teeth. “Fave band just released a new song. I dunno, I’m just really feelin’ it.”

No one was surprised.

Chapter Text

Day 55: Blake

She liked hanging out with Velvet and, although she’d never admit it, Sun.

There was a kinship there. They didn’t ever expect anything of her. The first time she’d met Velvet, there was something in her eyes that felt familiar, something that the two young women refused to address. And Sun… well, Sun was determined to worm his way into her life no matter what, but he never did it in a way that hurt her.

It was nice.

So, that was why when she brought a small packet of chocolate cookies for the group while prepping for their presentation in their student development class, the other two merely smiled, without any of the theatrics of the other girls. Blake appreciated it.

Chapter Text

Day 56: Ren

It had only taken nearly two months, but finally, Ren’s schedule was made.

The refrigerator had a beautiful chart taped onto the freezer door outlining everything he needed. The necessary materials were listed on the fridge proper. The rotation was made clear so that Nora wouldn’t ask him any questions, and enough containers had finally been procured so as to store and transport everything.

Nora found him later that day lying blankly on the couch. “You okay, Ren?” she murmured worriedly.

He gave her a thumbs-up. “Meal prep for the month is finally done.”

She blinked. “You mean the week-“

Month.”

She blinked again, before flashing him a brilliant smile. “Neat!”

Chapter Text

Day 57: Weiss

“Weiss!”

Ruby instantly perked up at the voice calling the pale-haired girl. “Oh my god, Weiss, I didn’t know you knew Penny!” As she spoke, the orange-haired girl saw Ruby, diverted her course, and launched herself into a tackling hug towards the shorter.

Weiss rolled her eyes, walking away. Yes, she did indeed know Penny. She knew far too much about Penny, and her dad Dr. Polendina, and how Professor Ironwood was practically her uncle, and every other random inane detail the orange-haired Tech student had managed to unload onto Weiss that weekend in the study lounge.

She still didn’t get why Penny had been crying.

Oh well. She felt her heart soften as she saw how enthusiastically Penny and Ruby were speaking. Let the children relax, I suppose.

Chapter Text

Day 58: Blake

“You sure you don’t wanna hang?” the voice on the phone implored. “It’s Saturday! We can relax!”

“No, Sun,” she breathed, voice shaky. Her eyes were locked to her computer screen, where a message chat with Ilia was opened up. The most recent message from her old friend was nothing but a photograph. The lines were a little blurry from movement, the photo likely having been taken in secret, but she could recognize that burning red hair and puffy scar from a mile away.

He was standing in the line of a campus coffee shop.

He actually came to campus.

All the safety she’d built up for weeks disappeared in an instant.

Chapter Text

Day 59: Pyrrha

“And she just won’t hang out with me, man!” Sun cried, throwing his hands up in the air angrily. “I don’t know what to do!”

Pyrrha chuckled. This wasn’t the first time Sun had been upset about Blake, and it likely wouldn’t be the last. “I’m sure she has her reasons,” she soothed diplomatically. “Blake’s a bit of a mystery after all.”

He crossed his arms against his chest, pouting in a way that was becoming all-too familiar to the redhead. “I guess…” Before she could continue the conversation, though, the boy’s eyes lit up. “But enough about me! What about you and,” he leaned over to whisper in her ear, “Vomit-Boy?”

Pyrrha groaned. “He got food poisoning, Sun-“

“Still counts!”

She blushed, lowering her voice. They were in the middle of Jaune’s workplace, after all. “…Things are… good.”

He beamed. “Good.”

Chapter Text

Day 60: Nora

She sighed, dropping her head heavily against her computer keyboard. The keys clacked, and out of the corner of her eye, she could see the long string of ‘m’s that began to fill the screen as her nose held it down.

A gentle hand on her back, followed by a lightly scolding voice, filled her with warmth. “Nora, c’mon,” Pyrrha teased, “we’ve gotta get this done soon.”

Nora blew her bangs out of her eyes as she sat up. “But writing papers are so boring! Especially when they’re-“

“Based on even more boring papers, I know,” the redhead chuckled, turning back to her own laptop. “But we’ve got this. We’ll get dinner after?”

She pouted, but she knew Pyrrha would keep her word. “’Kay.”

Chapter Text

Day 61: Jaune

He cursed under his breath as he shuffled back to his seat. How had he managed to mess up his presentation that badly?!

He knew. One look at Pyrrha, who was watching him with worried empathy after that train wreck of a presentation, and the memory came rushing back.

Pyrrha had come to the café to study that weekend, just like she always did. He had been finding it harder and harder lately to just look at her as a good friend- how could he, when she was always going out of her way for him?

But this time, she had brought Sun. Sun was a cool guy, yeah, but… since when had they been friends?

It worried him.

Chapter Text

Day 62: Ren

Why he was back in the Drama cohort’s lounge, he didn’t know- but Nora was clearly having a good time, so it couldn’t be that bad.

“Your eyelashes grow like that naturally? That can’t be possible,” the orange-haired girl was shrieking delightedly.

The object of her inquiry, Roman Torchwick, was clearly not pleased by the sudden invasion of non-Theatre-related individuals. “Don’t you have any of your own work to do, Thunder Thighs?”

It was Ruby who took offense on her behalf, but before the girl could do anything, Weiss dragged her away by her hood.

Roman waved goodbye as she left, pretending to be teary-eyed. “See ya, Red!”

Ren sighed, massaging his temples. Where did they all get this kind of energy?

Chapter Text

Day 63: Ruby

“Ms. Rose.”

“Yes?” She held her hands anxiously behind her back, fiddling with the hem of her skirt. She knew she shouldn’t- Yang was always telling her to stop messing with it- but she just couldn’t help it. Did it work?

Professor Ironwood stood up slowly, regarding her with a stern gaze. However, that expression quickly melted into one of warm approval. “That presentation was excellent.

She beamed instinctively. “Thanks, Professor!”

Her heart swelled with pride and joy as she saw Mercury’s expression fall in disbelief. No one had managed to impress James Ironwood yet.

See? I do belong here.

Chapter Text

Day 64: Yang

“Hot damn, look at that! It’s a party in here!” Yang cheered, high-fiving Sun as she entered the long line-up behind him.

“Ay,” Sun cheered, gesturing with his thumb towards the swamped liquor store working frantically checking IDs at the door. “Get your IDs out, apparently we’ve got some babies trying to sneak in!” Suddenly, the blond’s eyes mischievously flashed. Yang immediately grinned, giving him the go-ahead for whatever he was plotting.

The man winked, then leaned out of line. “Mercury Black,” he called, voice ringing clear above every customer’s head, “you’re not 21 yet! Get your fake ID outta here!”

A strangled growl from the front of the line elicited cackles from Yang. That’s what you get for picking on my little sister, punk.

Chapter Text

Day 65: Ren

“Ren,” Nora grumbled, hair falling into her eyes as she looked down at his prone figure while she sat the edge of his bed, “let’s go hang out with everyone.”

He grunted, eyes fixated onto the screen of the laptop propped-up onto his lap.

She poked his cheek. “I’m hungry. We should get Pyrrha and Jaune and go to brunch!”

He continued to stare at his screen, scrolling down occasionally.

Groaning, she leaned down and looked at what he was doing. Instantly, she recoiled. “Why in the world are you doing our psych readings at 9AM on a Saturday?!”

He didn’t respond. He had reflections to do.

Chapter Text

Day 66: Blake

“So… why is he here again?” Ilia asked, glancing side-eyed at Sun.

Blake rolled her eyes. “Ignore him, Ilia. I just ran into him on the way.”

“Hiya!” Sun chirped, sliding into the third seat of their brunch table. “Heard this place makes great eggs benny. Gotta try it myself, y’know?”

“…Right.” Leaning forward, the shorter woman blocked her mouth from Sun’s view and whispered, “Does… does he realize why we’re meeting up?”

Blake’s lip twitched. No, Sun didn’t know. She didn’t want him to know.

But what was she supposed to say?

All she could do was lean forward and murmur, “You’re sure it’s him?”

Ilia nodded, and Blake’s heart broke yet again.

Chapter Text

Day 67: Yang

She awkwardly stepped into the room, glancing around. While normally, she was so confident, she felt a little less sure of herself in this situation. She had missed so many meetings of this Education-oriented club, after all, in order to do group assignments (and, if she was being honest, in order to run back and pick up her running shoes from her apartment before their active classes).

To her surprise, however, there were only a few people in the room. The main coordinator- a prof for the Elementary students- lit up, her eyes growing warm. “Welcome! We’ve been losing so many people as the term gets busier. Come in, come in!”

Suddenly, she didn’t feel as guilty about it all.

Chapter Text

Day 68: Jaune

As he dried yet another cup, he couldn’t help the sigh that slipped past his lips. He was exhausted, but what was he expecting? Working a job while doing a Master’s wasn’t exactly easy.

His sole comfort was seeing the exhausted faces of everyone around him. The entire café was full of people who were far too weary to function. Even Pyrrha, normally nothing but smiles and light, was nodding off as she finished her readings off in the corner of the room.

His heart grew warm as he looked at her. She didn’t need to come visit him at work. She always did anyways.

It had taken him a while, but he noticed it.

Chapter Text

Day 69: Weiss

“Damn, Weiss,” Neptune commented, eyes appraising, “I didn’t think you even owned black. What’s the occasion?”

The pale girl glowered, but didn’t respond. She didn’t want to wear black leggings, but she had no choice today. Instead of saying that, however, she merely ducked her head, waiting for the next lecture to begin.

Her mood only lightened once Ruby pushed a small bowl of soup and some painkillers her way. “Cramps?” she whispered.

A small smirk tugged Weiss’ lips upwards. “So you do have a use,” she teased.

Ruby took no offense. Weiss was Weiss, after all. It was the closest she’d get to a ‘thank you’, and that was okay.

Chapter Text

Day 70: Nora

“Look,” Nora groaned, crossing her arms grumpily, “I’m just saying- this much work is excessive.”

Pyrrha chuckled dryly, patting her friend on the back. “We’ll figure it out somehow.”

Nora slammed her fist on the table, startling Jaune as he sipped on a bowl of butternut squash soup. “No!” she insisted. “It’s not okay! Seriously, who stuck a pole up Ironwood’s-“

“Nora,” Ren warned, voice low but firm.

She sighed, slumping over in her chair. “There’s so much work. Why do we have four assignments due on the same day?”

Yang slid into the library seat next to her, grinning cheekily. “What’s wrong?”

Pyrrha murmured, “Nora’s upset about Professor Ironwood’s-“

Ugh,” Yang immediately cried, “who shoved a pole up his-“

“Thank you!” Nora cried, throwing her hands up in the air.

Chapter Text

Day 71: Pyrrha

“Pyrrha, hey-“ Jaune called, but the redhead ignored him. Whatever it was, it would have to wait.

She could hear the boy fall into step behind her. “Pyrrha, what’s going on? Where are you going?”

She didn’t respond.

In her mind, she knew she should say something- her silence was always more-than-a-little alarming for the blond. However, today, she just didn’t have the energy to care.

It was Sun who got Jaune off her back. “She’ll be fine, dude. Just let her get what she needs.”

“Get wha-?”

As she entered the campus bar, she heard Jaune splutter in disbelief. She didn’t care what it looked like to him. She had had a tough week, and for once, she was going to let herself unwind.

Chapter Text

Day 72: Ruby

While she could feel the intensity of Penny’s gaze on her, she couldn’t bring herself to care.

“Ruby,” the other girl murmured, worry and concern evident in her tone, “maybe you should slow down?”

“Penny,” she slurred as she pulled her lips off her straw, “I didn’t turn 21 for nothing. I deserve to have drinks if I want…”

Her friend sighed, pushing her box of fries towards her. “Eat more, then. You shouldn’t drink on an empty stomach, you know. Professor Ironwood always says-“

Ruby groaned, rolling her eyes. “Who cares what he says, he’s the worst!”

Penny sighed, patting Ruby on the back. “He’s not that-“

Ruby cut her off by sipping on her cider even more noisily.

Chapter Text

Day 73: Pyrrha

She yawned, brushing red bangs out of her eyes. Despite the autumn chill, she had been waiting outside the front door of the student center for at least twenty minutes.

When the doors finally opened, she was pleasantly surprised to see Velvet standing within. The quiet girl murmured, “Oh, Pyrrha! I didn’t think anyone would be here so early- you should’ve let us know, we would’ve let you in!”

Pyrrha waved off the concern, although the clear chill in her bones let her teeth chattering as she replied, “It’s okay! I just thought that the school referendum would be busier.”

Velvet snorted. “Oh, Pyrrha. You definitely didn’t go here in your undergrad.”

The redhead blushed, and Velvet ushered her inside. Was it that weird to participate in the school’s votes?

Chapter Text

Day 74: Jaune

His fingers itched to reach towards his phone.

She won’t come. Don’t bother.

Still, he couldn’t help but glance longingly at his cell phone. He only had 10% left in his battery. Of all times to not have an external charger…

But no matter how many candles he lit in his small, dingy dorm room, the darkness continued to be oppressive.

It was supposed to be a day off after the storm’s aftermath, the city-wide power outage even affecting Beacon. He was supposed to be having a good time relaxing in the wake of cancelled classes.

Should I call her?

He wanted to see Pyrrha.

He didn’t call.

Chapter Text

Day 75: Blake

She gasped as she watched the children staring intently at the whiteboard at the front of the classroom.

Blake bit her lip, brows furrowed as she realized in horror what was happening in the lesson she had been given the chance to observe. The teacher was nothing short of apathetic towards the adolescents under their care. Blake’s heart broke, watching how confused and frustrated the students grew.

She had spent so long focusing on running away that she had forgotten why she had wanted to teach in the first place. The children deserved to have teachers who cared. She would care. She had to.

Chapter Text

Day 76: Nora

“Miss Valkyrie? Do you have anything to add?”

Professor Branwen gestured haphazardly her way when she didn’t respond, eyebrows raised expectantly. “Do you want to share the discussion response you wrote for today’s readings?” When she continued to stare blankly at him, the man rolled his eyes. “I’m saying it was well-done, Nora. C’mon. Work with me.”

He’s asking me something. I have to answer. She glanced at Ren. He was waiting for her to say something. So was Pyrrha. Everyone was waiting. 300 people were waiting.

“Nora, what was your response?”

“…No thank you.”

The class howled, Professor Branwen sighed, and Nora went back to more important things- figuring out how to convince Ruby to bring her corgi to class.

Chapter Text

Day 77: Ren

He felt bad, he really did.

Sun wasn’t a bad guy. Neither was Neptune. And their presentation on the history of education in Vale wasn’t boring by any means- but no matter what he did, Ren just couldn’t care less about what they were talking about.

“Alright, everyone,” the energetic blond announced, clapping his hands together, “who’s excited to play a game? Pull out your phones!”

Ren groaned as he felt Neptune’s hand land upon his shoulder. “Ren,” the suave presenter said loudly, drawing everyone’s attention to the quiet man, “aren’t you excited?”

“Woo,” he intoned blankly. He was too tired to care. He needed to sleep.

Chapter Text

Day 78: Weiss

“The teacher in this situation,” Weiss read blandly, not even bothering to look up from the presenter’s notes on her computer screen, “was able to use the response taken from their students to figure out how best to utilize these methods, the results of which are found… on this graph.” Mechanically, she pointed at the chart which popped up onto the large screen.

Later, her friends checked in with her. “Are you okay?” Ruby murmured, eyes wide with concern. “That wasn’t like you at all.”

Weiss shrugged, sighing. Once upon a time, she would’ve been embarrassed by such a lackluster presentation, but today, she was just relieved it was done. She had other work to do.

Chapter Text

Day 79: Yang

Her thoughts drifted back to the pile of homework waiting for her, sat neatly in a stack on her bedside table. She should’ve been at home, getting started on it, making sure Ruby was staying on track as well.

However, before her thoughts could settle on her work, she shook her head quickly to get rid of those thoughts. She dug her toes in the sand- it was freezing in mid-autumn, but she didn’t mind. The wind whipping past her cheeks stung, but the scent of the sea was invigorating.

Yes, she had work to do. She didn’t regret calling her friends down to watch the sunset with her on the beach that evening, though.

Chapter Text

Day 80: Ruby

“Ugh, it’s just- it’s- it’s-“

“Ruby,” Yang attempted to soothe the younger, “it’s going to be okay, you’ll see-“

“You’re saying that ‘cause you’re with Blake!” Ruby’s normally pale skin was flushed and frantic, worry filling her from head to toe. “Jaune gets to hang out with Pyrrha and Sun, and Weiss gets Neptune and Sage, and Penny’s going to Mantle for it! Ren and Nora get to stay together!” She crossed her arms, tears filling her eyes. “So why do I have to do my practicum with Roman Torchwick and Mercury Black?!”

Yang wanted to support her, but there was nothing she could say to make her little sister feel better.

Chapter Text

Day 81: Pyrrha

“I’m going to be… what?”

Professor Goodwitch sighed. The woman handed her the necessary paperwork. “You’re going to be teaching in Professor Branwen and Professor Xiao Long’s classrooms for your practicums,” the blond repeated. Her eyes shone with pity and weary acceptance. “They’re both excellent teachers, hence why we also have them working with us in Beacon’s faculty. You’re going to learn a lot.”

“That… sounds swell.”

She should’ve seen it coming- she knew that both Qrow Branwen and Tai Xiao Long also taught at Signal High, where she had been assigned. They taught History and PE between the two of them. And she had yet to get used to their teaching styles in the university.

She was in for a long, long set of classroom assignments.

Chapter Text

Day 82: Ruby

“Oh,” Tai soothed, “you’re going to do great, Ruby! Just you wait. Caroline Cordovin is a phenomenal Tech teacher. With her as your sponsor, you’re going to be amazing!”

Ruby beamed. Had she really managed to luck out with her placement?

Suddenly, her father’s smile faltered. “She’s… a very particular person…” He perked up again. “But she’s lovely.” His brows furrowed together. “She’s… a little bit stubborn…” He smiled wide once more. “But you’re going to learn so much!”

As the man continued to waffle back and forth between positive and negative traits, Ruby felt her enthusiasm waning. God, what kind of a person am I gonna be stuck with?!

There was only one way to find out, and she wasn’t looking forward to it.

Chapter Text

Day 83: Ren

Yatsuhashi had nodded sagely, and Pyrrha had smiled. “You’ve got this,” she had murmured, giving him a thumbs up. So, with that encouragement in mind, Ren had proceeded to explain the main activity for their presentation.

He hadn’t expected this.

Velvet and Coco stood up, crossing their arms and belting derogatory comments.

Sun slammed his fist on the table, crying heresy.

Ren watched the arguments fly back-and-forth, with Professor Ironwood sighing behind it all. It was just supposed to have been a light roleplay discussion about racist historical views which have effected the education system, not a full on make-believe debate. No one in the class meant any of the things they were saying, but wow, he had not been emotionally prepared for this that morning. I need more tea after this.

Chapter Text

Day 84: Jaune

He smiled, but they both knew he was just faking it. Clumsily, he commented, “Y’know, you’re really going to learn a ton from them. They’re really good teachers.”

It was true. Tai Xiao Long had a magnetic presence in class that made every single student feel supported, motivated, and energized. It was going to be amazing having him as an advisor. And Qrow Branwen- while he didn’t present himself the best way in their late-night evening psychology lectures with him, Jaune had gotten a chance to see him teaching his high school students during one of their visitation days. He had been incredible with the kids.

Still, his heart ached when Pyrrha’s lips curved into the weakest, most half-hearted smile. She wasn’t ready to go on her practicum. Neither was he.

But at least she would be there with him. For that, he was eternally grateful.

Chapter Text

Day 85: Nora

“I can’t believe it’s already time,” Nora breathed. Her belly was full, heart contented as she gazed around the large pub table. Everyone in their class seemed to be there- Ruby and Yang were sharing nachos, Blake was reading, and Weiss was chatting animatedly to Neptune. Sun and Pyrrha were teasing Jaune, while Coco, Yatsuhashi and Velvet were goading Fox to keep complaining about his café manager. Penny was swinging her feet happily at the other end of the table next to Ciel, the latter eating her salad methodically. There were even more people seated at the next table, eating and chatting and clinking glasses.

“We’ll only be separated for a few weeks for now,” Ren commented dryly.

“Yeah. But I’ll miss everyone, still.”

“Yeah.”

She snuggled into the crook of his neck. “I’m glad you’ll be with me still.”

She felt him smile.

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Day 86: Weiss

Weiss jumped, startled when she felt breath on her ear. “Weiss?” a familiar, high-pitched voice whispered.

The pale girl clutched her chest, groaning in frustration once Ruby’s wide eyes finally appeared in her line of sight. “Ruby, don’t sneak up on me like that!” she scolded.

Normally, Ruby would pout, or maybe tease her- today, thankfully, she sensed Weiss’ tension, her fear. “Weiss, what’re you doing?”

Weiss cleared her throat, turning her laptop screen towards the younger. “I’m just figuring out the best way to get to my school,” she explained haughtily. “I need to figure out whether the bus or the train will be more efficient, and-“ She froze, feeling Ruby’s small hand squeeze her arm.

“You’re going to do great,” Ruby soothed.

She let out a long, deep breath, a little bit of her anxiety easing away. “…Yeah.”

 

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Day 87: Yang

Yang tugged on the blouse, turning this way and that in front of the mirror. Her mouth was set into an angry line as she scrutinized her reflection, mental arithmetic driving her mad.

Coco nodded approvingly. “Looks good. Turn. Pose.”

Yang complied, tucking her hands into the pockets of her dress pants. While she hated dressing like this, she had to admit- wearing a blazer, which was so unusual for her, certainly made her feel powerful in a different way than normal.

Coco snapped a photo on her phone. “Next.”

As she tugged off her blouse, reaching for the next one draped over her chair, Ruby poked her head in. “Sis, why are you trying on workplace outfits? Don’t you just need, like, loose track pants and stuff?”

Yang groaned. She hadn’t really thought of that.

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Day 88: Blake

First day. It was just the first day.

So how was this happening already?!

Heart in her throat, she scurried around the back of the school. It was her first time here, so she didn’t know what to expect. Sanus High was far from Beacon’s campus. She should’ve been safe.

And yet, a car that looked suspiciously like Fennec Albain’s was parked in the front lot.

He doesn’t work in education. There’s no reason for it to actually be him.

But if it was… she’d have to ask to change schools. After all, if Fennec knew, then it was only a matter of time before Adam Taurus knew. And if Adam knew… everything would’ve been for naught.

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Day 89: Blake

The next morning, Blake was waiting outside of the secretary’s office as the administration walked in. “Miss Belladonna,” her principal boomed, the older woman nodding at her approvingly. “I like seeing people who are early birds. That’s a good quality to have in a teacher.”

“Thank you, ma’am,” Blake smiled, all cordial airs and politeness.

As her principal let her into the secretary’s office to sign in, the girl finally released a deep sigh. Fennec’s car wasn’t in the parking lot that day, and so if she was able to hide in her sponsor’s classroom, she’d be safe.

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Day 90: Pyrrha

She glanced up from her notepad where she had been taking notes for future lesson plans as the door burst open, a long, low growl echoing into it. Climbing to her feet, she straightened her back primly, watching with increasing concern as Qrow Branwen wandered in, hands tucked into his pockets, slouched over. “Professor, you’re here-“

“It’s Qrow, Pyrrha,” he grumbled, tossing his bag onto his messy desk.

Pyrrha nodded, shifting uncomfortably. “Um, how are you feeling? You’ve been gone for two days, so-“

“You’ve been with Tai, right?”

She nodded.

He sighed, running his hands wearily through his hair. “Go back to him today.”

“But the History units-“

“Later, kid. Calm down.”

She sighed, packing up her belongings. Time for day 3 of watching Tai Xiao Long clumsily lead gym classes.

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Day 91: Nora

“Oh, Ren, it’s so romantic!” Nora cried, clapping her hands enthusiastically. “Look at them all dancing! What if they find their high school sweetheart here?!” She swooned, watching with loving affection as the fourteen-year-olds danced under strobe lights to the latest pop songs.

She glanced over when the man didn’t respond, barely stifling the giggle which emerged from her throat. Ren was not pleased, and she couldn’t blame him- she had volunteered him to chaperone the school dance with her, after all.

Finally, he sighed, massaging his temple as the bass reverberated through giant speakers at the front of the gymnasium. “As long as they leave enough room between them, I don’t care.”

She laughed, bouncing on her heels. He’s just sad he can’t dance, too.

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Day 92: Yang

“Damn,” the cashier murmured, raising an appraising brow at Yang’s collection. “You’re throwing a party tonight, or what?”

“Probably,” Blake murmured, crossing her arms as she leaned on the wall. “Why am I here again?”

When Yang didn’t answer, simply pulling out her credit card and paying for her multiple packs of beer, the cashier pressed, “So, how many people?”

“Just one.”

That caught Blake’s attention. “Hey, Yang, actually, are you okay?”

Yang shrugged. She knew why Blake was confused- every weekend, Yang would party with her friends. But after this week, where she’d been running around for hours with the most hyperactive kids imaginable, all she wanted was to sit down and have some drinks in. Absolute. Silence.

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Day 93: Jaune

“I can’t believe that you’re still working throughout this,” Pyrrha murmured, worry and warmth in her gaze. “Are you okay?”

Jaune shrugged, pulling on a weak smile. “You saw my sponsor. Cool dude. I’ll be okay.”

Of course, it was a giant lie- having to work evening shifts throughout the week after each day spent at his school were torturous. Yet, what choice did he have? He needed the shifts.

Seeing her concern, however, sent a flush across his cheeks. “But same with you. You didn’t need to come hang out if you’re tired-“

She shook her head. “How could I turn down free cake?” she laughed, gesturing to the platters of cake the café was giving away that day. “Anyways, everyone seemed really excited about it.”

His heart sank. Everyone?

He didn’t mind seeing Nora and Ren walk in, but when Sun did…

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Day 94: Weiss

"Oh, you dolt, why are you here, too?"

Ruby shrugged in that infuriatingly dense way of hers. "Groceries?"

Penny poked her head around from behind Ruby. "Groceries!" she chimed in. "Hello again, Weiss!"

Weiss groaned quietly, rolling her eyes. "Hey, Penny." She frowned, watching the orange-haired girl blinking owlishly at her. It felt a little unnerving to be near the other Tech girl, after seeing her break down so completely in the student lounge the other day.

Yet, there was no sign of distress on the girl's face, and she looked as cheery as could be. Maybe she's alright now, Weiss thought idly as the two other women began following her childishly as she finished up her groceries. After all, she still had no idea why Penny had been crying. Maybe.

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Day 95: Ruby

Ruby slipped into a seat next to her sponsor teacher, wincing as the tiny, bitter old woman crossed her arms angrily at her presence. "You're late," Ms. Caroline Cordovin- simply known as 'Cordovin' by certain staff members- spat, turning her nose up at Ruby with a disdainful glare.

With a worried smile, Ruby checked her watch. School had just ended, and the mandatory staff meeting hadn't started yet. "But… there's five minutes till-"

Cordovin cut in, "It's not about time, it's about those!" She pointed over Ruby's shoulder.

Confused, the girl swivelled in her chair, ignoring Mercury and Roman's curious, mocking glances as she finally honed in on the dwindling plate of cookies at the front of the room. "Um… cookies?"

"For staff meetings, you will arrive early and get me snacks," Cordovin declared.

Ruby bit back a groan. The woman wasn't a hard marker, and she actually was a fairly good teacher-mentor- but with things like this being commonplace, it was going to be a long, long year working with this woman.

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Day 96: Ren

"You're… leaving?"

His sponsor, a kind woman with large, rosy cheeks grinned. "Yup, to Mistral for two days! You'll be fine," Thumbelina Peach insisted, hanging her apron on the large hook by the main stovetop. "Just make sure that everyone turns off their units and that no one dies, and we should be good to go!"

Ren frowned, watching the woman shuffle around the classroom, the sounds of children rushing home through the halls after the final school bell echoing through the classroom. "But isn't that a liability issue?"

She waved off his concerns airily. "We'll have a substitute in here to supervise legally, but you'll be delivering content."

And before he could protest, the woman grabbed her belongings and strutted out of the door, leaving him crestfallen and confused in the Home Ec classroom.

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Day 97: Weiss

"I'd like to help out with the choir," Weiss announced confidently.

The Fine Arts teacher, in charge of the few drama, band, and choir classes offered by the school, looked at her warily. "You're a chemistry teacher though, correct?"

She shrugged. "Yes, but I've done hundreds of concerts as a soloist and in choir." Plus, this is easy extracurricular credit for me. I refuse to have a weak resume at the end of this program.

The man examined her stance before a wicked smile emerged onto his lips. "The name's Klein Sieben," he announced grandly, holding out a welcoming hand. "Let's test your range, and then I'm sure we'll find something for you to do."

She grinned, nodding back. The man's gaze was determined, but not judgemental- just challenging. She'd meet the challenge any day.

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Day 98: Yang

"Ms. Xiao Long," a voice called from the doorway.

Yang looked up, hand dropping from where it had been massaging her temples in vain. "Yeah, may I help you?" she replied, quickly climbing to her feet.

The vice principal, Leonardo Lionheart, waved sheepishly as he entered the door. "I'm just checking in on the student teachers," he said gently. "Only two more days left before you head back to Beacon. How has your experience here been thus far?"

Awful. I spent all morning screaming at eight graders, I can't feel my throat, my head is pounding, and the seniors started a water fight in the middle of class! I'm exhausted! "It's been amazing!" she gushed.

He bought it, a relieved smile on his face. "Y-you can do it!"

She grinned weakly. Two days left.

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Day 99: Ruby

"Oh my," Cordovin murmured, her face twisted into an odd sort of emotion.

"Did something happen?" Ruby asked, wiping her hands onto her shop apron.

Wordlessly, the older woman handed her a student's daily reflection folder.

At the end of each class, students had to document their progress on their personal projects that day. Over the last two weeks, Ruby had seen these folders mostly be used as a routine rather than a proper reflection, but she wasn't going to point that out.

Flipping open this folder, however, Ruby's cheeks tinted pink with gratitude and awe. Scrawled messily on Oscar Pine's senior year project log for that day was, 'Miss Rose helped me with my vehicle design. It was actually really helpful.'

Her heart melted. Oscar Pine was shy, and rarely spoke in class- but she had reached him!

I can do it, huh?

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Day 100: Pyrrha

Coco groaned, readjusting her sunglasses. "Thanks for checking on this, girl," she cooed, flipping her hair over her shoulder. "I can't believe he assigned lesson plans for Monday." She flashed a grateful smile towards Pyrrha. "It helps a ton to have ol' Qrow as your prof, huh? You know exactly what he's looking for."

Pyrrha bit back a weary remark. Yes, while the two weeks with Qrow and Tai had taught her how they wanted her to prepare for her classes at Beacon, and for during later practica at Signal High, it didn't change the fact that she was still absolutely baffled by what they had wanted her to do.

Jaune brought over their coffees, a shy smile on his face. Pyrrha's heart skipped a beat. At least Jaune had been there with her to commiserate during this adventure.

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Day 101: Nora

She smiled weakly as Pyrrha bustled around the small apartment, worry and care oozing from every pore. The redhead fussed with blankets and soup, ensuring that the shorter girl was nice and snug on the small couch in the living room.

“You don’t need to worry, Pyrrha,” Nora croaked.

Pyrrha shook her head, tucking Nora’s blanket under her chin. “Of course I worry!” she scolded. “You got sick after hanging out with the kids too much- why wouldn’t I worry?”

Nora sniffled, her head spinning. “Ren’ll be back soon-“

“And until then,” Pyrrha insisted firmly, “I’m here.”

“…Why?”

The redhead softened, her cheeks flushing. “You’re my best friend here, Nora,” she admitted. “Let me help.”

That phrase warmed Nora up better than any soup or tea.

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Day 102: Jaune

He stood, his gaze steely, brows drawn together.

The ceremony was done well, despite his unending unease at being present. The flowers were laid at the altar, the statue polished till it gleamed under the late-autumn light. The heroic figure of his great-grandfather stood proud upon the forefront of the statue, and rows upon rows of soldiers saluted his silhouette as the memorial ceremony wore on.

The Great War had ended many, many years ago. The fact that Jaune wasn’t a soldier like his forebears still dug at him, even though his freedom was what was fought for.

A hand reached down, warm, shy, gloved fingers covering his gently. “Jaune?”

He didn’t realized he’d been tearing up. He swiped at his cheeks, ears pink. Still, he smiled, and Pyrrha never judged him for it. She just squeezed his hand a little tighter, asking no questions.

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Day 103: Ren

“Mr. Ren!”

Ten seconds back into Thumbelina Peach’s classroom after over a week spent back at Beacon, Ren barely had time to steel himself when the barrage of shorter, beaming faces surrounded him.

“You’re back!” “We missed you!” “Are you staying here from now on?”

Ms. Peach chuckled, dusting flour off of her apron as the students swarmed around him. “They missed you,” she mouthed, a fond smile on her face.

Distantly, Ren cheered- she looked more than pleased with him. He hadn’t seen her since her random trip to the backwoods of Mistral with the senior students.

“It’s good to be back,” he mouthed back. She nodded approvingly, gesturing for him to speak to the students. And despite all of his earlier fatigue dealing with his students, and his frustration at her for leaving him to fend for himself… he had to admit, he had missed being with the kids.

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Day 104: Blake

“I cannot believe you won over everyone so fast!” Sun wheezed, nearly doubling over.

Blake grinned bleakly, wincing as Yang patted her on the shoulder. By her side, the blonde grinned, wrapping an arm around her. “Of course Blake won them over- who loves reading more than her?” Yang gushed, beaming at her friend. “You should’ve seen how her sponsor teacher marked her-“ and she stood, puffing out her chest to adopt a mocking affectation of the man in question, “-because she’s ‘a born natural, Miss Belladonna’.”

“It’s… it’s really nothing,” Blake insisted softly. She should’ve been proud to have come back with such good news, but she couldn’t find it in herself to care.

Not while she still hadn’t found out what Adam knew.