Solitas turned out to be the worst place ever .
Weiss had warned them as much as they were traveling to Argus - Yang had heard of the rather..strict lifestyle the military imposes on the citizens of Mantle, since most of the population were Faunus. Still, she didn’t expect the overwhelming presence of Atlesian soldiers.
Armed guards were on every corner, in every building, parked in every street of the slums. People worked for nearly twelve hours a day. A curfew had been imposed after the fall of Beacon, the military claimed it was for safety, so no scheming could go on like it had in Vale - but what little leisure the people of Mantel could enjoy was getting smaller by the day.
Blake was on edge, Yang didn’t have to know her to see it. They all were - Ironwood was being stubborn, Qrow had basically camped out in his office to try to get him to listen. The General’s patience was running thin enough that the rest of the team decided to get out of his hair - and experience the dread of everyday life in the city below Atlas’s floating Elysium. Days of being basically locked in their small safehouse was taking a toll.
“There’s got to be something we can do.” Yang sighed, peeking out the blinds for the millionth time to see the empty nighttime street.
“It’s curfew.” Weiss repeated, crossing her legs. “And you don’t want to get shot.”
Yang blew out a breath, leaning against the window frame. Ruby let out a sigh in time with her, standing to get attention.
“I know it’s terrible sitting around.” There was a resounding groan. “We can try again with Ironwood in a few days, and maybe he’ll be more willing. The people who live here do this every day, I think we can handle a little boredom.”
Yang was about to sigh and turn back to the window, when Blake shrugged a shoulder. “Actually,” all eyes swerved to her. “I did see something interesting a few days ago, when we came to the city.”
Nora threw out a hand. “And you were waiting for the right moment, or..?”
“I thought we should stay out of trouble.” Blake looked to Yang. A silent question, if she should even keep going. Yang trusted Blake’s judgement, she nodded. “It might be nothing, but I noticed a mark outside a warehouse. Not a White Fang symbol, but it’s got a similar meaning. A place where Faunus can come and be safe. Not to rally, but to relax. Have an actual life.”
There was silence across the room. Jaune scratched the back of his neck, sharing a look with Ren. Weiss seemed to stiffen. Nora met eyes with Ruby, grins already growing. Yang just raised a brow. “Should we- I mean, would that be-”
“I’ve never been to one.” Blake admitted with a shrug. “But with the population so dense here..Faunus and humans living so close - they’re all tired. They all want to escape. I’d bet the faunus running that club probably want the business more than they want the satisfaction. And the risk of having someone rat them out.”
Another lull fell over their group. Yang turned to Ruby - the idea of leaving the house excited her enough, let alone going to a club , Gods how long it’s been. But she was their leader, and it was a risk. “Well,” she grabbed her arm, scratching as she thought. “We have to be careful, and we don’t want to risk anyone getting in trouble, but-”
Nora stood, yanking up Ren as their hands were still intertwined. “We’re partying!”
What they thought would be a rumour turned out to be a full fledged rave. They had to go down a few subfloors of a shady looking warehouse, but it was there.
Blake was in awe of the thumping speakers, blasting music with club lights and filled to the brim with Faunus and human alike - all dancing like nothing else mattered.
“Well,” she turned to Yang as they stood at the front of the club, getting a grin that made her ears flick.
“C’mon,” Yang laughed, pulling her into the crowd. The tight grip of her hand made Blake’s heart pound, in time with the stereo overwhelming them from above.
“Yang,” she flicked her head back to the rest of their team, still taking in the scene. She saw Weiss throw her arms out in silent anger at being left. “The others-”
“Can wait a few songs. We’re all in the same place.”
Blake felt Yang tighten her grip on her hand, her hair brushing over her shoulder as she looked back to grin at her, and Blake smiled.
They pushed through the crowd, any trace of Solitas’s cold quickly chased away by warm bodies - music quickly aligned with her heartbeat, she felt the pulse in her boots, spreading to her bones. A laugh bubbled up from her belly, Blake didn’t even know why. She felt Yang’s hand around her’s, soon both hands on her shoulders as they found a place to stand, and moved without grace to the rhythm - she just felt like laughing.
“There you go,” Yang laughed with her, moving her to the rhythm that pulsed around them. The rest of the team hadn’t followed them, probably going off to where they were most comfortable within the club. She had to admit, it was nice to be just the two of them. Besides their altercation in Argus, they’ve been surrounded by their team.
Which wasn’t a bad thing. Blake loved them, she had missed them dearly and would fight to the ends of the world for them. In a way, they already have - but Blake also still valued her solitude. To reflect, and be herself, and be comfortable. Over a year ago, a club pounding with music and crowded with people wouldn’t be considered a valuable place. But with Yang holding her and their fears behind them - it didn’t matter where they were for her to be at peace.
Yang took her hand, making Blake spin under her arm - over and over again. To get her laughing, or dizzy enough so Blake fell into Yang, Blake wasn’t sure. “Sorry, sorry.” She giggled, getting her feet under again to realize Yang’s arms were the thing holding her up. Blake placed her hands on Yang’s shoulders, frozen in place when she met her eyes. The lilac she’s stared into so many times, used to be so worried she’d never see again. They were filled with happiness, laughter, teasing, fun, safety, everything Blake found comfort in - and now they carried something else. It made her feel like her heart was bursting out her chest. “Yang, I-”
With the music still pulsing around them, Yang might as well have whispered, but Blake heard her clearly. Others still moved around them, dancing as if they weren’t caught in a trance. Blake let out a shaky laugh, Yang mimicked her. Blake felt her breath on her lips, about to try and say something when Yang pressed her lips against her’s. The music seemed to halt as Blake felt Yang against her, her soft pressure that spread warmth from her lips to her blood - she felt herself relax against Yang’s hold. Blake trailed her hands up to cup Yang’s cheeks, thumb stroking down her cheek. She felt Yang’s hands lightly on her neck.
The crowd dancing beside them shifted in a wave, jerking Blake and Yang out of their trance. Blake shuffled back to keep her balance, laughs coming out in bursts.
Yang mirrored her, Blake saw the deep blush on her cheeks. “Blake,”
“Hey,” she stroked her cheek, leaning in to kiss her again. Yang hummed against her lips.
Some bumped around them, sometimes into them, Blake let them, wrapped up in Yang, and Yang wrapped up in her, in something that’s been a long time coming.