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Fanfic / A More Flawed Gem

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Pyrrha after learning you dip cookies in ketchup.​

All Beacon proved to be for Pyrrha Nikos was training for her shiny new career in the illustrious field of idiot wrangling. When life forces her to lead a team of anti-social weirdos, morally deplorable thieves, and manic depressive losers, she’s got to balance her increasingly fragile sanity against a team hell-bent on becoming the clear and present danger to the future of Remnant through their own sheer incompetence. With the White Fang and Grimm both smarter, tougher, and better lead than ever, it’s starting to dawn on her that some divine being has it specifically out for her. Yay.

Welcome to team PINA, Pyrrha. The first drink’s free.

A More Flawed Gem is what happens when two writers decide to get together and take on the dark, Grimm world of RWBY OC fanfics with nothing but humor, action, and the occasional attempt at serious storytelling.

A More Flawed Gem begins at the start of RWBY Volume 1, and mostly told from the point of view of three OC characters—Cielo Noel, Indigo Jack, Cards Adler—and Pyrrha Nikos. Starting off as more or less a retelling of the original story from the perspectives of three new characters (and Pyrrha), it very quickly spiraled off the rails ever since the Emerald Forest arc and has since become its own story.

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A More Flawed Gem contains examples of:

  • Abusive Parents: Referenced by both Cielo and Cards. The former supposedly having a physically abusive and alcoholic grandfather, where the latter is implied to be something of a disappointment to her mother—who isn't shy about letting her know that.
  • A-Cup Angst: At one point Cards is mentioned to have told Blake that they were both card-carrying members of the Itty Bitty Titty Committee.
  • Adaptational Badass:
    • Downplayed in Jaune's case, who is not only more assertive than his canon counterpart but is also much more informed on basic Huntsmen-related terminology (like Aura). He is, however, still much less skilled than his classmates.
    • The Grimm are also hit with this. Their presence of Remnant is much more emphasized and they're shown to be much more crafty in combat. The Grimm shown in the Emerald Forest arc were strong enough to force Beacon faculty and staff to intervene during the initiation.
    • Vale's military, if only by virtue of getting greater focus.
  • Adaptational Early Appearance: The Nuckelavee—which hadn't even been mentioned until volume fourmakes its first appearance during the Emerald Forest arc.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Adam Taurus of all people is hit with this in spades. While still presented as an antagonist, not only is he much more focused on righting the wrongs against the Faunus, but his obsession with Blake is almost completely removed.
  • Ambiguously Bi: Cards. After she and Cielo escape a horde of beowolves (and nearly burn down the forest) she takes her time to "appreciate" his physique while also reminiscing about a “cute” female bear faunus named Smokey.
  • Amoral Afrikaner: Chloe is implied to be a fantasy Afrikaner and, in her own words, "My morals and tongue are both very flexible in the service of the greater good."
  • Anti-Hero: Cielo and Jack are this to a degree, both having shady backgrounds and rude dispositions. While they’re generally willing to do the right thing on occasion, Jack seems to do it mostly to keep out of trouble, whereas with Cielo it seems to be more out of a need to prove his own strength as opposed to any real altruism. Chloe Weaver is also this to a lesser extent.
  • Anti-Villain: Adam Taurus was written to be this, according to the Word of God.
  • Badass Army: Deconstructed. The army of Vale is noted to be very small, but very elite, insular and vicious.
  • Badass Teacher: As per canon. Once the Grimm in the Emerald Forest prove to be too dangerous for the students to take on, the professors are forced to intervene.
  • Blanket Fort: "Fort Kickassia: Your Authority Not Recognized" is built from blankets and bookshelves to protect a nascent team RWBY
  • Blow You Away: Cielo's Semblance subversion of sorts. While it appears to give him some degree of control over the wind, it's actually just him projecting a powerful force that also happens to displace the air around him.
  • Butt-Monkey: Jaune, of course, but Cards takes this role and runs with it to the point that even the authors mock her. One chapter even has her being hurled through the air as a weapon until she vomits and passes out. Pyrrha may also become this if the fic's summary is any indication.
  • Canon Welding: While technically RWBY: Grimm Eclipse is canon, it is never once mentioned in RWBY. A More Flawed Gem has started welding them together into a single, unique narrative. So this both is and isn't an example of the trope in action.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Cielo and Chloe are probably the biggest examples in the story, whose bizarre antics and thought processes drive their partners up and over the wall and into a snake pit.
  • Comedic Sociopath: Jack and Cielo—but especially Jack, who is introduced kidnapping a kitten strictly on a whim.
  • Cool Big Sis:
    • Same as canon, Yang is this to Ruby. When talking with Cards and Cielo, she gushes about how proud of Ruby she is for making friends.
    • Indigo Arc also falls under this and Hard-Drinking Party Girl. The latter is bit more evident and her mention of a couple parties, influencers, and the time she got so drunk she kissed her little brother, Jaune, on the mouth. She's trying really hard to be the cool big sister, although she goes on record saying she is purposely trying to embarrass him. At the end of the day, she does genuinely love her brother even if she can be a little bit vulgar about it.
      “Fuck you, you stupid asshole,” Indigo said, tears in her eyes. “I hate the armor. I can’t strangle the godsdamned life out of you! Mom is so worried. How the dicksauce did you ever get accepted into Beacon? I’m gonna murder you!”
  • Corrupt Politician: Le Chance, although it isn't directly stated, it's all but it's spelled out when you understand that Jack got into the school on a criminal corrupt scholarship, And it is later revealed that this is a man who sponsored him.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Three of the OC protagonists are hinted to have this to an extent. Cielo being an apparent orphan from a broken home, a life of violence, and a connection to the Branwen tribe. Jack having grown up on the streets of a rough part of Vale and also having lived a life of crime. And Cards' severe lack of self-confidence seeming to stem from an overly strict, demanding mother.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Pretty much every character has a snarky line or two. That includes characters like Ruby and Pyrrha
  • Death by a Thousand Cuts: Adam Taurus promises to do this to Cinder, carving the names of the White Fang member's she killed as penance. He even promises to carve Blake's name, should she end up dead as a result of Cinder's plans.
  • Deuteragonist: The team consisting of Jaune, Chloe, Ruby, and Weiss seem to be this. Cielo even refers to them as the “B-Team” at one point.
  • Dirty Commies: Downplayed. Union Labor it stated to have some good ideas, but dangerous leadership, and so the conservatives are planning to slowly cooperate their positions over time to defang them.
  • Disappeared Dad: While Jack speaks of it at some length, Cielo is a little more flippantly quiet about his orphan status, although he does make a joke about being a dumpster baby and states how there are definitely benefits to having no parents in a place like Beacon.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Despite being an extremist and major member of a terrorist organization, Adam Taurus is extremely unnerved by Cinder's plan to attack Beacon—finding it to be unnecessarily cruel considering Beacon is one of the few institutions to offer Faunus relatively equal cohabitation. He's also incredibly creeped out by Dr. Merlot.
  • Everybody Smokes: Roman uses this line. As does Jack when Pyrrha expressed disgust at his habit.
    "This is Vale. Everyone smokes here."
  • Expy: Indigo Jack is a very clear—albeit much less evil—expy of Worm's very own Jack Slash.
  • Fantastic Racism: The story promises to place more emphasis on Faunus discrimination. In addition to that, we also get a bit good ol' human-on-human racism, such as Jack claiming he can't pronounce "Pyrrha" because it's a "weird Mistrali name," or Cielo condemning Northern Mistrali cuisine as "inferior" to Heartland's food.
  • Fantastic Slur: Two that stand out are "house pet" and "'nimal."
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Same as in canon, but emphasized to a greater degree. Mistral is notably separated in two, Greece and East Asia respectively. Cielo is from the Heartland (or rather, the frontier surrounding it), the more Asian-inspired part of Mistral, whereas Pyrrha is Northern Mistrali, who appear to be Greek. Chloe, a native of Vacuo, is also noted to have come from a kraal, thus making her Remnant's equivalent of an Afrikaner.
  • From Camouflage to Criminal: Jack speaks at length of former Huntsman who went criminal, and claims that half of all serious violent crime is caused by former Huntsman.
  • Get A Hold Of Your Self Man: Ren gets this from Jaune of all people when he comes across the Grimm that killed his parents and destroyed his hometown.
  • I Call It "Vera": Being RWBY, this is only natural. Special props go to Cards’ “Here to Help!” taser-baton and Jack’s pair of balisongs each named “A Subtle Knife.”
  • In Series Nick Name: As always, both Jack and Cielo are responsible for giving characters these, with Jack referring to Pyrrha as "Nikki" and Cielo referring to Cards by a different type of card game every time he speaks to her. Actually, Cielo is much worse since he constantly makes up nicknames for people whose names he can't be bothered to remember.
  • Invented Linguistic Distinction: The fic makes constant and clever use of made up vernacular using Remnant's history.
  • Kill It with Fire: Cards and Cielo are able to ward off a horde of pursuing Grimm (as well as start a small forest fire) with a well-aimed bullet and capsule of Fire Dust.
  • Lovable Rogue: Jack fits the trope to a T. Snarky and always has at least one line of playful banter at the ready. Cielo and Chloe also fulfill the role to a certain extent.
  • Mix-and-Match Weapon: It's a RWBY fic, so this is a given.
  • No Name Given:
    • Jack's patron god is explicitly known as the "Nameless Thirteenth God." She's said to be the "mother of whores, thieves, and lost children," and is popular among the poor and downtrodden.
    • Ozpin later justifies this after seeing Jack's religious necklace. The religion of the Nameless 13th is explicitly outlawed in Vale, because it's a cult that indirectly worships Salem as a protective mother goddess.
  • Out Grown Such Silly Superstitions: When bringing up religion, it's noted the Kingdom of Atlas as an official government policy of state atheism. As opposed to Vale, which merely suppresses faiths it doesn't like
  • Self-Deprecation: Cielo doesn't seem to think twice about taking potshots at anyone, himself included.
  • Shout-Out: A plenty.
    • The first volume is titled If You Like PIÑA Coladas.
    • One of Jack's first lines is a reference to Roots.
    • The district of Catchfire is a nod to the Gentleman Bastard series of books.
    • Both Jack and Cielo reference a drug called tetrameth.
    • Indigo Jack is a walking, talking reference to Jack Slash.
    • Chapters 1, 2, 4 are Panic! At the Disco references. "I’m the Narrator and This is just the Prologue", "There’s A Good Reason These Tables Are Numbered, Honey, You Just Haven’t Thought of It Yet", "The Only Difference Between Martyrdom and Suicide is Press Coverage"
  • Illegal Religion:
    • Atlas outlaws religion. Meanwhile, Vale appears to have a sanctioned state religion, and actively suppresses cults and gods it doesn't like, like the Nameless Thirteenth. Vale is noted to specifically deny "freedom of religion."
    • Adam implies there is something similar going on in Mistral with the white fang, whose local leader is known as "Sister Taidamo, the Prophet of Tekitomura."
  • One-Steve Limit: Indigo Arc and Indigo Jack. Jaune discusses this, initially thinking that Jack has a woman's name.
  • Spider-Sense: a side ability of people with an act of aura is seen when you can sense Grimm in the area. Described as a kind of cold black spot in their soul. This fails unexpectedly for Pyrrha when her aura fails to suss out a skinwalker, whereas the more streetwise Jack intuits something is wrong by himself.
  • Survival Mantra: Cards seems to fall back on her family’s mantra of “Doubt and die” when she needs to psych herself up.
  • The Mole: It is implied that Jack is this. Possibly employed by Roman Torchwick, no less. Even Ozpin has some suspicions that this is the case, even how Jack is only at Beacon on a government contract. Jack states that one of his jobs is to report on what Ozpin is doing, but doesn't elaborate.
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized: Noted by Ozpin as a background event that there was a "communitarian" uprising after the end of the Great War among the poor of Vale. which resulted in lots of the poorer strata of the country not fully adopting the idea that they even won the war, and rejecting lots of the cultural impacts of it, such as colored naming. There's also mention of the civilian government being afraid of another "military coup", and so the highest rank they allow in the army is Colonel.
  • The Scottish Trope: Indigo Arc remarks how Vale's army isn't even something to talk about because it's so ghoulish.
  • Unreliable Narrator: A cornerstone of the story and often its comedy. Every POV character is unreliable in their own unique ways, highly depending on who the character is and what they're focused on. Combined with the writing generally including the POV character's opinions on things, and you have an unreliable yet highly entertaining stew.
  • "Well Done, Son" Guy: Implied with Cards. Some of her narration implies she simply wants her mother’s approval.
  • Wham Line:
    • Considering it comes much earlier than in canon.
      “Yes, Harold,” Ozpin said in a firm voice, “it’s true. Beacon’s been compromised. We’re at war.”
    • Another one from Weiss when she snaps at Ruby for being more concerned about Crecent Rose than the dead archeologists.:
      People are dead, Ruby!
  • Wrong-Name Outburst: Inverted. Cielo accidentally refers to Cards by her actual name once they start fighting the Handyman. She doesn’t fail rub it in his face after she notices this.